The Journal of Prison Discipline and Philanthropy (New Series, No. 46, January 1907)
The following figures were gathered by the MoralInstructor, the Rev. Joseph Welsh, in his interviews with theprisoners admitted during the year:10
|Total number received during the year||431|
|Number who attended Sunday School||286|
|Number who attended Church||232|
|Number who were members of Church||157|
|Number who were abstainers from use of liquor||63|
|Number who were moderate users of liquor||159|
|Number who were intemperate users of liquor||170|
|Number who were users of tobacco||356|
|Number who gambled with cards||29|
|Number who gambled on horse races||11|
|Number who visited immoral women||158|
|Number who kept mistresses||2|
THE PHILADELPHIA COUNTY PRISON
This Prison still keeps up its record as a well managedinstitution. Unfortunately, the Convict Department at Holmesburgis somewhat overcrowded, and it is to be regretted thatfunds have not yet been provided by the City Councils for additionalcorridors, so that each man could be separately confinedas the law provides. It is admitted by the advocatesboth of the separate and of the congregate system, that thoseawaiting trial should be strictly separated. To place a first,and especially a young offender, with a hardened criminal,simply means the production of another criminal, and placesthe State itself in the position of committing a wrong againstone of its own citizens.
Frederick J. Pooley, one of the Secretaries of the Societyand Agent at the County Prison, is more untiringthan ever in his efforts for the betterment of those incarceratedin Moyamensing, at Tenth and Reed Streets, and in the NewCounty Jail (Convict Department), at Holmesburg. He visitsboth institutions during five days in the week, seeks to aidmen temporally and morally, is instrumental in having casesbrought to speedy trial, and in some cases even looks afterthe destitute families of prisoners. At Moyamensing, womenmembers of the Acting Committee also visit in the Women’sDepartment.
During the year 1906 there were received at the CountyPrison, Tenth and Reed Streets:
|Total committed, 1906||23,376|
|Total discharged, 1906||23,452|
After trial many were sent to Holmesburg.11
THE ASSOCIATED COMMITTEE OF WOMEN ON POLICE MATRONS
The Associated Committee of Women on Police Matronsin Station Houses meets monthly with three representativesfrom each of a number of the charitable associations of Philadelphia.On this Committee, the Pennsylvania Prison Societyis represented by Mrs. P. W. Lawrence, Dr. Emily J. Ingramand Mary S. Wetherell. The following is the report of theCommittee for the past year:
The Committee on Police Matrons held ten regular andone special meeting during the year ending December 31,1906.
The membership of this Committee is now twenty-onewomen who represent seven societies, namely, the PennsylvaniaPrison Society, Women’s Christian Temperance Union,Civic Club, New Century Club, Young Women’s ChristianAssociation, Christian League, and Mothers’ Club. The usualattendance is from eight to twelve members. Reports arereceived from all the Matrons at each meeting. There aretwenty-two. The fourteenth district (Germantown) wassupplied with a Matron in March, 1906. The effort is madethat each Matron shall receive at least one visit a month. Themeeting of the Conference of Charities in Philadelphia inMay last brought us unusual interest in the work of PoliceMatrons elsewhere, and we formed a permanent committeeto secure knowledge of it in other cities, and comparison ofmethods with them. At several meetings of this year, fourMatrons at a time were invited to meet with the Committee,and offer suggestions and state experiences requiring helpand study. The Needle Work Guild coöperates with the Committeefor supplying clothing to the Matrons for their usewith needy women and children under their care. Mrs.Fletcher, our Senior Matron, completed her twentieth yearof service, and was given a reception by the Committee, atwhich the Directors and other officials were present. In thistime she has had 9,000 women and 2,900 children under hercare. The Director of Public Safety, Robert McKenty, hasbeen especially interested in an effort to give personal help toerring women and girls, and extends every facility for our communicationwith such, by directing the Lieutenants to coöperatewith our efforts to redeem them from disgrace and despair.The numbers given in our reports are, of course, from twenty-twodistricts only. There are fourteen others without Matrons,where many women and children are received. We have been12assured that a Matron will be appointed in West Philadelphiavery soon, and there is also a prospect of more effective systematicwork in coöperation and supervision of this branch ofpolice administration.
(Except as to totals and conditions when received, statistics cannotbe made absolutely accurate, especially as to “Nationality and Disposal.”)
|Women under care from January, 1906, to January, 1907||9,295|
|Lost or seeking shelter||379|
|Discharged with and without fines||2,074|
|Sent to Reformatories||672|
|House of Correction||923|
|Children under care from January, 1906, to January, 1907||6,839|
|Lost or ran away||2,846|
|Brought with parents||468|
|S. P. C. C. and Aid Society||387|
|Charities and Reformatories||449|
|House of Detention and Juvenile Court||572|
CHESTER COUNTY PRISON
William Scattergood, President of the Board of Inspectors,makes weekly visits to this prison, and reports itin good condition. It is considered a model prison. DeborahC. Leeds, a member of the Acting Committee, has also visitedit during the year.
COUNTY PRISON AT MEDIA
Deborah C. Leeds has visited this prison several timesduring the year, and reports it a well conducted institution.13
Mrs. E. W. Gormley, Superintendent of the Prison andJail Department of the W. C. T. U., is also a member of theActing Committee of the Pennsylvania Prison Society, and assuch an official visitor to the penitentiaries, county jails andreformatories of the Commonwealth. We are highly favoredin having a member who is doing efficient work in the westernpart of the State.
DOOR OF BLESSING
This institution for discharged female prisoners was establishedand is under the supervision of Mrs. Horace Fassett,who is an official visitor at the Eastern Penitentiary and theCounty Prison. She writes: “The Door of Blessing goessteadily on in its good work under its noble matron, GertrudeBrown. Since January, 1906, fifty women and four babieswere sent there from our County Prison, the House ofCorrection, and the Eastern Penitentiary. All of these wereplaced in situations in the country, mostly on farms. Some havereturned to go to better positions, some have remained, and veryfew have gone back to their old life. The Door of Blessingis a home for these dear children in every sense of the word—ahaven of rest and peace. All love it and look forward totheir afternoons out, that they may go there and have supperwith the matron and tell her of their joys and sorrows, to whichshe listens with loving sympathy. Six women were sent to theirhomes, their families being willing to receive them after a shortstay at the Door of Blessing.”
HOME OF INDUSTRY
This institution extends help to men discharged from theEastern Penitentiary and the County Prison. It provides boardand shelter for these, gives them employment in broom-making,for which they receive compensation, and seeks to bring all whoenter it under the saving power of the Gospel. The efficientSuperintendent is Frank H. Starr, who makes every effortto place men in situations when they leave the Home.
This is under the care of the Protestant Episcopal Church.A large number of men from the Penitentiary and CountyPrison have been sent there for meals and lodgings, sometimesonly for a few days, and at other times for a week or two untilthey could obtain work.14
HOPE HALL, NEW YORK. UNDER THE CARE OF MRS. BALLINGTONBOOTH
During the year a number of men have been sent to thisplace from the Eastern Penitentiary. Mrs. Booth always receivessuch with a warm welcome, and often obtains goodsituations for them.
In the early part of October, 1906, the Committee onPrison Sunday sent out a circular letter, urging the observanceof October 21st as Prison Sunday, to thirty-three hundredministers of the Methodist Episcopal, the Presbyterian, theBaptist, the Lutheran, the Protestant Episcopal, and the ReformedChurches in Pennsylvania, and to six hundred dailyand weekly newspapers.
From the Minutes
MEMORIALS OF DECEASED MEMBERS
George W. Hall
George W. Hall, former member of the State Legislature and of CityCouncils, a well-known financier, and President of the PennsylvaniaPrison Society, passed away on December 14, 1906, in the 77th year ofhis age. He was a member of the Franklin Institute, a director of theSchool of Design for Women, a director of the Home for FeebleMinded Children at Elwyn, a member of the St. Andrew’s Society, atrustee of the Second Presbyterian Church, and an inspector of thePhiladelphia County Prison.
It seems proper that there should be a minute of record of one whofor years has been an active member, besides being a life member of theSociety. He spent much time in looking after the welfare of the prisonersat the County Prison, Tenth and Reed Streets, and at Holmesburg,where he will be greatly missed.
May this minute be recorded and a copy sent to the surviving membersof his family.
Rev. James Roberts, D. D.
Rev. James Roberts, D. D., was born at Montrose, Scotland, December25, 1839.
He came to this