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ft. in. Old Dock.... 198 by 85 .. Its gates 33 0 wide, by 25 3 deep. Salthouse Dock213 by 102..
25 0 George's Dock 246 by 100..
26 2 King's Dock.. 272 by 95 ..
26 0 Queen's Dock 280 by 120..
Such are the sizes of the Liverpool docks, which, when compared with those of London, will appear relatively small.
The principal bason of the WEST-INDIA Dock, which was opened August 30th, 1802, measures 2600 feet, by 510, and 29 deep. Contiguous to this is another bason, or dock, of the same length and depth, by about 400 feet wide. The first, of about thirty acres, will contain between two hundred, and three hundred sail of West-Indiamen, and is appropriated for unlading the vessels. The latter, for loading outwards, contains about twentyfour acres.
These are accommodated with immense warehouses, basons at each end, and surrounded with a high wall, and deep ditch.
The LONDON Dock for unlading is 1262 feet long, by 699 feet wide, and contains 20 acres.
The EAST INDIA Dock, for unlading, is 1410 feet long, by 560 feet wide, and contains 18% acres; and for loading, is 780 feet long, by 520 feet wide, and contains 9 acres.
These immense works have been nearly completed since the commencement of the year 1800, and thus demonstratively prove to the astonished country, and to the world, the unlimited powers of English energy, skill, and riches, when properly stimulated and rightly directed.
Of the Liverpool Docks, it may be necessary to be more circumstantial. The uncertainty of the tides, and flatness of the shore at this port, first suggested the necessity of some artificial accommodation for the merchant's vessels, and, as early as 1561, a scheme was planned for constructing a sort of dock, as a shelter from storms, &c.; but it was not till 1710, that an act was obtained to construct a regular dock. Since that time the docks
have increased in number, with the increase and population of the town, and are now augmented to thirteen * :--Five wet docks, five graviug docks, and three dry docks, (independent of the duke of Bridgewater's dock); occupying a space of about three miles in circumference; the whole constructed, formed, and built upon the bed of the river. It is to be observed that George's, the Old, and Salthouse docks, communicate; so that ships can pass from one to the other, and into the graving docks, without going into the river, where their being unmanned or unrigged, might expose them to injury from the wind and tide. The King and Queen's docks communicate together in the same manner, and with their own graving docks. There are perfeet communications under ground between all the wet docks, by large tunnels, for the purpose of one dock cleaning or washing another; so that when a dock is to be cleaned, which is generally done once a year, it is left dry at low water, by keeping the gates unclosed; the sluices are opened into it by different directions, and a great number of men enter, who, with spades, shovel the mud into the currents made by the sluices, till the dock becomes sufficiently cleared, which is usually done in ten or fourteen days. The dry docks are cleared from mud in the same inanner, by sluices opened from their respective wet docks. This ready and effectual mode of cleaning the docks by sluices, is rather of late invention and adoption; as it was originally done by means of flat-bottomed boats, a method tedious and imperfect. Each wet dock has a dockmaster, with an annual salary of 1051. whose office is to regulate the internal decorum of the dock, by allotting the positions of the ships in their loading and unloading; to direct the management of the flood gates, and to attend to the docking and undocking of the ships at the times of the tide; as, without such a regulator, who is obliged to act with impartiality, according to existing circumstances, confusion and consequent injury would ensue. The docks
* An act of parliament has been obtained for constructing two more wet
have watch, scavengers, and lamps, distinct from those of the town. Fires are not suffered; and even candles are not permitted to be lighted on board the ships, except secured in lanthorns ; nor tobacco smoked, under a penalty of 40s.; nor any combustible matters left on the decks, or on the adjoining quays, in the night, under a fine of 10l. By these precautions, strictly attended to, an accident from fire (so much to be dreaded) has only happened once; yet scarcely a day passes without fines being incurred for these practices. The penalty for having gunpowder in the docks is 40s. Large ships, when loaded, cannot pass the dock gates at neaptides, for want of sufficient depth of water there; so that, when a ship of that description, in the dock, is ready for sea during the spring tides, and the wind unfair, it is conveyed into the river, and there remains at anchor, to take the advantage of a favourable wind. If a large ship arrives from sea during neap tides, it continues in the same situation till the next spring tide rise high enough to float it into the dock.
The following table exhibits the progressive increase of the Dock Duties, which are levied upon ships, according to a certain rate per ton. It shows the number of ships that have been assessed in each year, with the aggregate sum paid to the Dock companies. Years. Ships. S. d. Years. Ships.
d. 1760 1245 2330 67 1780 2261 3528 7 9 1765 1930 3455 8 4 1785 3429 8411 5 3 1770 2073 4142 17 2 1790 4223 10037 6 2 1775 2291 5384
1795 3948 9368 16 4
In 1724, the dock duty amounted to only 8101. 11s. 6d.
The aggregate current expenditure on account of the docks, (which we may suppose has increased in a similar proportion to the duties received), appears to have amounted, in the year 1805, to 27,8801. in which year, by the preceding statement, the duties received were 33,3641. 13s. Id *.
The view of the duties, as exhibited in the foregoing table, clearly shows the amazing increase of the annual receipts; yet, although this revenue appears so great, the Dock Proprietors are still considerably in arrears: for by a statement in the small volume already referred to, it appears, that “the original and present constructions of the docks and piers have incurred a debt of 106,7361. 185. 7d. by money borrowed upon them under different Acts of Parliament.
Connected with these docks are wide and commodious quays, with large warehouses, calculated to store up all such goods as are not immediately delivered to the retail dealers, &c.
Besides the five docks already mentioned, here is a smaller one, called the Duke of BRIDGEWATER's Dock, which is devoted to the flats and barges, belonging to the canals that communicate to Runcorn, Manchester, and the manufacturing towns in this part of the country.
The direction and government of the docks are vested in the Corporation, as trustees; whose accounts are annually examined and settled by seven commissioners, who are appointed for that purpose.
The following table displays the quantity and qualities of various articles of merchandize, that were imported into the town, for five successive years.
* See Picture of Liverpool, 1805,
Imports of Produce into the Port of Literpool in the following Years.
BRITISH PLANTATION SUGAR.
1802 1803 1804 1805 ! 806
Hhds. Tes. Bls. Casks. Chts, Tcs. Bls. Bags.
Cks. 38043 4701 | 2357
9869 7797 1220 9869 146 35781 8973 | 3871 380 8734 || 10730 198 1284 | 239 31149 13185 | 1713 | 16058 10125 10615 5669 | 16005 166 40322 357 1765 860 7529 11840 1660 1276 || 840 43573 5618 2176 1066 3791 12721 | 2335 | 22867 160
Bags. || Casks.
Bags. 1573 1289 7048 1465 3997
7093 7053 4420 6634 6496
Hhds. 135 60 65 194
TEETH . ASHES.
Years.. Tons. Tons. Tons.
Logs. Planks. 1802 1488
258\ || 3073 600
11288 14308 6444 5708 7628
Hhds. 6082 5023 6082 6838 8302
Cases. 543 430 506 889 1492
Bls. 14709 14986 21300 47079 26734
Bls. 28398 30497 24353 57622 30575