صور الصفحة
PDF
النشر الإلكتروني

so with this reservation for with. pected that parents should pay a out this it would be better even fair sum for their sons during the that the system should remain as at period of training. The sum represent. But if these training-ves- quired during the latter years of sels are merely to cruise-about the the existence of the old College was Isle of Wight, like those in which £100 per annum for all but the the second-class boys are exercised, sons of naval and military officers ; they will certainly not answer the but this would be too high an purposes required. The training- amount to fix for the future, for it ship should be a frigate—the old must be remembered that in forsix-and-twenties, like the Eury. mer days going through the College dice, would do capitally—and the was optional, so that those who cadets should go each summer for could not afford to pay so much for a cruise of three or four months at their sons--and the majority of least to the Mediterranean. They the parents of naval officers could would by this arrangement derive not-sent them straight to sea as a portion of the advantages which volunteers. It has been said by we have shown would result from some that the College ought to be the training taking place wholly in made self-supporting, and no doubt sea-going ships. It would not be it would be quite practicable to advisable to carry on the studies to devise a scheme whereby it would a great extent during this summer be so; but to make a fundamental cruise ; but at the same time there principle of this would, we think, are some subjects, such as naviga- be a fatal mistake. To start upon tion and marine surveying, which this assumption would be to cripseem to suggest themselves as being ple the whole plan ; for the result studied with greater facility in the would probably be, either that the course of a sea voyage to different sum required to be paid by the places. It would be better, accord- parents would be too large, or that ing to this scheme, that the train the establishment would be upon ing vessel should be a sailing-ship, a scale unworthy of the country. as it would be more roomy, and The popularity of the naval service steam could be studied better at the is such, that there would no doubt College, and on board the steamer always be found plenty of candiattached to it. The number of dates, were the expense of the educadets admitted into the service cation at the College as great even annually being about 170, it would as at Eton or Harrow; but in this of course be impossible to accommo- case those classes from whom some date all that would be at the Col- of our very best officers have been lege-three times that number-on drawn would be entirely denied acboard one ship. It would be ne cess to the Navy. It must not be cessary, therefore, to have several forgotten that Nelson was the son vessels; and perhaps the most ad- of a country clergyman, and that visable plan would be to have one many other officers of the highest for the cadets of each year, and for distinction have been, and are, sons each vessel to make two voyages, of naval and military men, whose taking half the annual number means are seldom such as to permit each time, which would be as many them to pay a high sum for their as a small frigate could properly children's education. That very accommodate in addition to her numerous body from whose ranks crew.

the Navy is largely recruited — Since the education which a boy country gentlemen of small fortune, would receive under either of the who have places to keep up and above schemes would be a very many other calls upon their income valuable one for any situation would also be unable to send their in after-life as well as the naval sons to sea, unless the expense of service, it would of course be ex- the College were moderate ; while

VOL. XCVI.-NO, DLXXXV.

the great body of the clergy would Pay of naval instructors, and chapbe still less able to pay a high sum. lains acting as such, £12,700 100 The course which it would be most

moot Pay of the educational

staff of Britannia, 2,062 0 0 worthy for this country to adopt

opt Pay of naval cadets, 3,830 19 0 would be, to devise a comprehensive scheme for a Naval College fully

Total, £18,593 9 0 equal to the wants of the service, According to either of the foregoing and upon a liberal footing; to fix schemes, naval instructors would upon such an annual sum for each be no more required on board ship, cadet as should place it within as the cadets would have received reach of all those who now send a thoroughly good education before their sons to the Navy ; and then, joining the Navy, and would then if it were found that this was in- be of an age to keep up their knowsufficient to cover the expenses of ledge without such assistance : the establishment, to charge the therefore the whole of the above balance to the State. Supposing sum would at once go towards the that the Naval College and training

expense of the College. Supposing, ships were to cost the country even also, that 100 cadets paid the full £100,000 a-year, that would be but

amount of £70 a-year each, and 50 a hundredth part of the ten millions paid at the rate of £40, leaving which the Navy swallows up an- the remaining 20 free, this would nually, and only one-third of the amount tocost of a single iron-cased ship like

100 Cadets at £70, £7000 0 0 the Minotaur. The regulations of 50 , at £40, 2000 0 0 the Britannia require the parents 20 , free, of each cadet to pay $40 for his maintenance during the year he is

Total, £9000 0 0 on board, and this annual sum is which, added to the former sum, necessary all the time the lad is a makes £27,593—an amount that midshipman ; so that for five or would go a considerable way towards six years £40 a-year has to be paid, covering the expenses of the Colbesides the cost of uniform, clothes, lege. But the matter is one of &c. But under the proposed sys- such vital importance to the Navy, tem, the midshipman, on joining that questions of economy ought the Navy from the College, being not to be permitted to stand in the a thoroughly-trained and competent way of a thoroughly satisfactory officer, should at once receive an scheme, upon whatever footing it amount of pay sufficient to main may be based. tain him in respectability, without It has been proposed that the further assistance from his parents Naval College should also be open being necessary. There would, to boys intended for the merchant therefore, be only the three years in , service; and no doubt this would the College or training-ship during be highly beneficial to the latter if which the parents would be called it could be carried out, and would upon to pay for their sons, and for tend to draw the two services closer this shorter period £60 or £70 together, which is much to be dea-year would not be too high a rate sired. But the College would be to establish. But there should be quite large enough without this ada certain number of cadetships dition to its numbers; and surely upon a reduced scale open to the in this great maritime country our sons of deserving naval and mili- mercantile navy is able to support tary officers of small means ; and an educational establishment of its a few, sons of deceased officers, own. We question very much, also, should be admitted annually free whether the parents of boys inof all expense.

tended for the merchant service The present system costs the would care to go to the expense of country as follows, according to an education such as is required the Navy Estimates :

for the Navy.

Since, according to the proposed should not be considered in the plan, there would be no naval same light as the non-commissioned cadets on board the ships of the officers of the Army, with whom fleet, and an officer would be only they rank, and who have come from three years in the rating of mid- the same class of society. These shipman, it follows that the num- men, in the Army, are frequently ber of junior officers would be sent in charge of detachments of much smaller than at present; and soldiers, to reside miles away it may be asked, therefore, Who is to from any of their officers. The do the various duties that are now ordinary duties of boat-service, performed by the youngsters? We therefore, such as landing officers will try, then, to give a satisfactory and answering signals, might be answer to this question. In the performed by the coxswains of the first place, it is considered by many boats, as is done in the French experienced officers that the num- navy; and it would only be requiber of warrant - officers might be site to send an officer upon special greatly increased, with advantage occasions, such as copying orders to the service, and that the duties of importance, and going on board of mates of decks could be advan- foreign men-of-war. No doubt, tageously performed by them. In just at first, some inconvenience the next place, every one who has would be experienced by the change been acquainted with the Navy for of system ; but this necessarily atthe last five-and-twenty years, must tends any alteration of long-estabbe aware that a great change has lished custom whatever; and we taken place in the habits and nature confidently believe that in a very of the seamen. They are no longer short time this arrangement would that careless, childlike, thoughtless prove of great benefit to the serset they were, whom it was impos- vice, in raising the position of sible to trust out of sight; and the petty officers, and making it who never expected, or wished, to of greater value in the eyes of the be so trusted. The majority of seamen. And it must not be forthe ships' companies now-or soon gotten that there are great disadwill consist of men who have vantages in the present system of grown up from their boyhood in schoolboy officers, by which the the service, who have been care discipline of the fleet suffers no fully trained and educated; and slight injury, as we have before the numerous measures which have pointed out. been adopted of late years to im- Turn we now to another branch prove the condition of the sailor- of our subject. Whether such a showing him that the country takes project as either of the above be an interest in his welfare, and that adopted, or whether the Admiralty be is looked upon as a valuable may decide only to carry out at the public servant - have not been College a partial system, such as that without their fruits in a very mark- now in practice in the Britannia, ed and decided iinprovement in the and keep up the plan of naval inconduct and disposition of the men, structors to continue the education The consequence is, that officers in on board ship afterwards, it is cercommand find that they can now tain that provision must be made, place their men in positions of as at present, for a higher course of trust and responsibility, which a study, at an after period, for comfew years back they would not have missioned officers. As we have bedreamt of; and the very fact of fore stated, it is difficult to overfinding himself in such a position, estimate the benefit which has reand being confided in, develops a sulted to the naval service, from the man's good qualities, and raises his studies pursued by officers of all tone of mind to a much higher level. ranks at the College in Portsmouth There can be no reason whatever Dockyard, during their intervals on why the petty officers in the Navy shore; although the benefit might have been even greater had the and not less than twenty-two years establishment been placed upon a of age. Now it is in the rank of different footing, as we shall see lieutenant that officers at the prepresently. Although it is advisable sent day remain longest, the comthat the Cadet College should not mander's commission being most be situated too near the seaport difficult of attainment. We would town, yet in every respect it is to propose, therefore, that after three be desired that the senior College years' sea-service in the rank of should be in the dockyard, and the lieutenant, officers should be perold building is quite well suited to mitted to join the College for a the purpose. It is not too much to course of study similar to that say that the advantages gained by which the mates formerly went officers studying there are multi- through ; and that a commander's plied tenfold by the circumstance commission should be given halfof their residing in the principal yearly to the individual passing the dockyard of the kingdom. Not a highest examination. By this plan day passes without there being all the benefits of the former syssomething novel and instructive to tem would be restored, and, as be seen in this immense establish- we think, with increased advanment; every class and description tage both to the service and to the of vessel may there be compared officers. together; the latest improvements The College should likewise be in steam machinery, the newest in- open, as at present, to half-pay ventions in artillery, the art of ship- officers who may wish to go there building, and every method of rig- to study scientific subjects; and ging—all may be seen and studied every encouragement ought to be there during the daily stroll round given to induce men of ability so the yard, which is the constant to employ their intervals of forced practice of the student officers. We idleness. According to the present therefore trust, that wherever it may system, there is no regular course of be determined to fix the situation of study prescribed, but each officer is, the junior College, the senior estab- as we have mentioned, allowed to lishment may remain where it is. follow the bent of his own inclina

We have seen how that the course tion, and to take up whatever subof study at the College for the lieu- ject he has a taste for. So far this tenant's commission has of late is a wise arrangement, for the naval years fallen to the ground. This profession embraces such a diversity is much to be regretted, for, as we of matters — standing as it does before showed, the system was an in close relationship with nearly excellent one for the service. It every department of science-that is, however, a question whether it it would be impossible for any peris altogether desirable that an officer son, except he were endowed with at the sub-lieutenant's age should an extraordinary intellect, to gain remain for such a long period on more than a slight acquaintance shore, for it is just at that time of with the higher branches of all the life that the most valuable experi- subjects bearing upon his calling. ence at sea is gained. We would He might, indeed, be “ Jack-of-allrather suggest a different plan, trades, but he certainly would be which we think would benefit the “master of none." It is therefore profession still more. It is a very more desirable that an officershould general opinion in the service that confine himself to one or two subofficers should remain for three years jects, and follow them up as far as on the sub- lieutenants' list, and he is able ; and since the various then be promoted as a matter of ramifications of science are intercourse, when they would have been, woven with, and to a great extent according to the scheme we have depend upon, each other, he could proposed, at least six years at sea, not fail, in gaining a thorough know

ledge of one, to acquire a certain There is an observatory belonginsight into others.

ing to the College, which, if it were To this end there should be every kept for the use of the students, facility afforded to enable the offi- would be of the greatest value to cers to carry out their studies pro- those who might be disposed to perly ; but, unfortunately, this is study astronomy; but this observanot the case at present; and no tory is used as a depôt for the one is more painfully aware of this Government chronometers and methan are the excellent Professor teorological instruments; and since and his colleagues, who have striven the rating of these chronometerscontinually, but without effect, to upon whose accuracy the safe nainduce the Admiralty to supply the vigation of our ships depends—is necessary means for that purpose, performed solely by means of the such as instruments, apparatus, and transit instrument in this observaother appliances. The only subject tory, it would never do to let it be which has been brought under a used as a hack instrument for the regular system is Steam, for which purpose of instruction. At present there is an established course to go it is quite impossible for any naval through, and an examination at the officer to become an astronomer, close of it with classed certificates unless he has access to some private of proficiency. And, fully alive to observatory, or unless he obtained the insatisfactoriness of the state permission to study at Greenwich, of matters, the Professor, in fram- which might probably not be coning the steam course, did all in his sidered convenient or advisable to power to remedy it, by including- grant. But if the College observaas well as practical instruction- tory were set apart exclusively, and sueh theoretical requirements as properly fitted up, for the use of rendered a certain amount of mathe- officers studying astronomy, this matical knowledge necessary; while very important science would be at the highest class of certificate re- once placed within the reach of all. quires, in addition, a considerable Every astronomer would testify to knowledge of mechanics and hydro- the great benefit which would accrue statics. But it is not compulsory to to science, were a certain number of go through even the steam course— intelligent naval officers, scattered although practically every one does over different parts of the world, 80—and that finished, which is gene- in a position to take reliable obrally in six months at most, there servations of the various celestial is no longer any regular system to phenomena, and to furnish intellifollow, nor any further certificate gible and trustworthy records of of study to be obtained. There- them. fore those officers who may have Another subject which is of the studied for three or four years at greatest value to a naval officer, the College, and acquired a high and for acquiring a knowledge amount of scientific knowledge, of which there are at present no have nothing to distinguish them facilities, is marine surveying. from such as may have merely There is not one officer in fifty, we passed through the steam course will venture to say, who has any with a third-class certificate. They practical acquaintance with this have neither experienced any en- duty-except those who have served couragement to persevere in their in surveying-ships-although there studies, nor have they any other is not a station in the world where reward to look to for the labour such a knowledge would not be they have bestowed upon them, useful ; for we are constantly openexcept that which is contained in ing up fresh regions to commerce, every well-regulated mind-a con- and our surveying expeditions cansciousness of having employed one's not keep pace with the demands time in a profitable manner.

upon their services. It will be in

« السابقةمتابعة »