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Notice of the appointment of The Hon. Isaac Levy as Custos of St. Catherine

Galls News Letter

Saturday, May 18, 1878

Local News

The Hon. Isaac Levy is to be sworn in as Custos of St. Catherine, on Thursday next. We learn that the people of this parish are so overjoyed with the appointment, that the day will be observed as a public holiday. There is to be a grand gathering on that day in old St. Jago de la Vega, to do Homage to "The man whom the King delighteth to Honor." Spanish Town is to be illuminated, and the programme for the day is pretty long. Spanish Town always outshines Kingston in heartiness, and in way of doing things, when the conservative feeling of good old Jamaica there is our touched.

Gall's Newsletter

Saturday May 25, 1878

Inauguration of the New Custos of St. Catharine.

Thursday last was a great, day for St. Catherine -and it was a great day for Jamaica too. Such a day of unanimous and abounding rejoicing has not been our good fortune to see since we came to the island twenty-five years ago. The Rev. Mr. Radcliffe remarked that all the approaches to Spanish town reminded him of the Falls of Niagara, because one could see and hear nothing for miles and miles around the spot but Niagara! Niagara! Niagara! And most certainly in this part of the world nothing but Mr. Isaac Levy and so it was. When we remember what the country was twenty years ago in the vicinity of Kingston and Spanish Town, we cannot look with wonder and astonishment at three men, all worthy specimens of the sons of Jamaica, Mr. Isaac Levy, Mr. Louis Verley and Mr. Charles A. Robinson. In the Mother country the Englishman "chaffs" the Scotchman by asking, What Scotland would be without England? And the National pride of the Highlandman being touched retorts, and what would England be today, if it had'na been for the Scotland Man? So we may ask, what would St. Catherine and Kingston have been today if it had not been for these "dauntless three" who have, as Mr. Phillippo observed on Thursday, "made wilderness to blossom as the rose"!

We say it was a great day for Jamaica, because for a long time past the voice of the people here, although loyal to the Sovereign and obedient to the laws in which they have been permitted to have no hand in framing or even controlling, has never been respected or listened to by the government; appointments have been made without the public being consult at all, and men placed in positions to represent the community, by whom these men are not even respected. The consequence has been that the ancient pride of the country has been wounded; the spirit of the people blighted, unity has disappeared for the land, despair, disputes, malice and evil speaking has sickened the better disposed, while parochial influence has dried out. In the present case, Sir Anthony has adopted a new course, opened a new chapter of our Colonial History, and on the first page of it has been recorded, "the people ask me to appoint Mr. Isaac Levy, Custos of St. Catherine. I thought they were the best judges of what was best for themselves, and I disregarded the policy recently established of making Officials who are paid by the Crown, the mouthpieces of a free and independent people, that Mr. Levy may be untrammeled by the influence of the Treasury and I gave St, Catherine the gentleman they asked for"; and we say, Thursday was a glorious day for Jamaica, for the people of St Catherine wrote the second paragraph in the chapter-". And we rejoice as we never rejoiced before! "We sang, and we danced and we cheered, and we were loyal! Loyal to our Sovereign who remember us, to the government who comforted us and to the man who on that day cemented the hearts of St. Catherine and attached them to the portals of Kings House as by a magic wand." It was the first time for an age that the voice of the people was respected, and we rejoice almost to tears as we thought how happy Jamaica might be, from Negril Point to Port Morant. If the principle of Government was respected and the public voice was listened to by those who hold the reigns of Government. The entire country feels the compliment, and must appreciate the kindness of Sir Anthony Musgrave. Let us hope that the plant "Forget me not" will let us grow, and let us encourage the hand that plants for us, through our exercise of patience, and manifestation of true British loyalty, let us not be peevish, or discontented, or grasping, but "learn to labor and wait for "the good time coming"- when there will be many more "Forget me nots" and when Jamaica will be once more wear her Ancient greatness and again become what it has long failed to recognize that is, she is "the brightest gem in the British Diadem".The Decorations in Spanish Town

From an early hour in the morning - daybreak - Old St. Jago De La Vega was like a beehive. Flags were being posted in every direction and in a few hours every street has a "display of bunting". Over the line from the Railway to the Public Square we saw mottoes exhibiting - " England expects every man to do his duty"; at another corner, " Honor to whom honor is due". Still further on, "Heaven bless St. Jago Park". (The family residence of the new Custos.) Over a carpenter shop we saw, "Let bygones be bygones"- and over Lyon's Hotel we saw an arch of lanterns ready to be lighted up. At another we saw a large steering wheel of some huge steamer painted in white and gold, with the motto round its circle - "England expects every man to do his duty." On entering the public square the scene was grand. From every window there was a flag. Over a thousand people had congregated to take part in the proceedings of the day - a band of music was playing in spiritual time,

"Rule Britannia - Britannia rules the waves."

The Constabulary, in full dress, were drawn up in front of the courthouse, under inspector Crosbie. There were two Triumphal Arches (the handiwork of Mr. Feurtado) at one corner of the square, surmounted by wreaths of tropical flowers, drapery of evergreens and baskets of flowers, and magnificent tufts of mountain aloe. Everybody was in holiday attire, and all places of business were closed. for the day - the very carriages and vehicles were decorated, and all of St. Catherine was out for a day of common rejoicing.

The Court House

On entering the Court House we found the Magistracy, the Clergy, and a great army of Merchants and Officials in waiting. The Bench was decorated with vases filled with most beautiful flowers, the most prominent of which were the Pomegranate blossom, the double white Jasmine, the leaves of the Poinsettia, he Hibiscus, and the red and white Oleander. Other vases displayed variegated roses, evergreens, and honeysuckle. In a short time after arrival, and all were on the tip-toe of expectation, we heard the voice of thousands in the distance, which like a roar of thunder, came travelling along louder and louder, till it seemed to reach the Public Square, when the band struck up with great spirit, and in splendid time, the well known air, See the Conquering Hero Comes,

Then came the roll of the carriage wheels - and in the Public Square and all around the building, rang with deafening cheers. "Present Arms," shouted Inspector Crosbie, and the rattle of arms and accoutrements followed with the salute from the Constabulary bugle. "Clear the way, shouted a stentorian voice, and in walked the man of the people's choice, Isaac Levy, the Benefactor of St. Catherine. While the heaving multitude open up a passage to the platform, amidst cheers, which made us think of the days which are gone, and which now promises to return. The Band on the Green struck up" Auld Lang Syne," and a choir in excellent tune and unison, sang the Inauguration Hymn - composed for the occasion, by Mr. Bucknor;-

We are happy honored Sir, to know,

That thou this post hast one,

Then from our lips let honor flow,

Saying "Well' the King" has done.

CHORUS- We are happy honored Sir

We know among a people great,

Thy rule could ne'er give pain,

An as this day to us a treat,

We'll keep it not in vain.

CHORUS- We are happy honored Sir

Then come my lads for our Custos spend,

This mirth and frolic day,

In honor of him who ever doth lend,

His glorious hand to help.

CHORUS- We are happy honored Sir

The poor his acts have often seen.

And they his name doth bless,

His charity to men has been,

And none have known him less.

CHORUS- We are happy honored Sir

For Length of days we hope to be,

With wealth and honor crowned,

And many days of honor see,

To live on History's ground.

CHORUS- We are happy honored Sir

The Grand Commission was then read, and the oath administered to Mr. Levy, by the Magistrate appointed by the Governor, Mr. Thomas Whitter Jackson, Mr. Joseph Reid, of Ewing's Caymanas. Mr. Robert Russell, and Mr. Richard Carter. His Honour the newly appointed Custos then received several depurations, who presented addresses.

The first from the inhabitants of St. Catherine, which was read by the Rev. J. M. Phillippo, the senior Baptist Missionary, now in his eightieth year, who said he had been labouring in Spanish town for fifty three years during which he had known, respected and loved Mr. Levy for his exemplary life and many amiable qualities. To the Honorable Isaac Levy, Custos Rotulorum of the Parish of St. Catherine

Sir, We, the undersigned inhabitants of the parish of St. Catherine embrace the occasion of your inauguration as Custos of the parish, to tender to you our heart felt congratulations, on the honor which the esteemed Representative of our Most Gracious Sovereign has pleased to confer on you.

2. Possessing, as you naturally do, the main attributes for this high office; accessible as you have always been to all classes of the community; blessed, as you are, with the true nobility of man; knowing moreover, from long experience and daily association, the requirements of the people, and identified, as you are, with the material interests of the parish, we see in you an earnestness of purpose, well calculated to advance such interests and secure the peace, contentment and happiness of the people.

3. We express the genuine sentiments of ourselves, and we believe in so doing, we speak as one voice, the sentiments of the community.

4. We have now, only to add our earnest hope that you may be long spared to fill the office of the Chief Magistrate of St. Catherine, and to continue to discharge those social and moral duties which have rendered your name a household word among us.

5. Commend you and your esteemed wife and family to the protection of that Divine Providence, which has never failed you.

To which the Custos replied;-

Reverend Sirs and Gentlemen, I thank you sincerely for your congratulations expressed in your address which you have been good enough to present me on this occasion of my inauguration as Custos. I feel truly gratified at the high terms in which you have characterized me with the material interests and well being of the parish and its inhabitants. No honor can be more pleasing that my actions during a period of nearly fifty six years has met with the approbation of those who I have been so long associated, and with your continuing co-operation it will be my earnest endeavor to strength the bond of good feeling now happily existing, and promote the general welfare of this large and important parish by faithfully discharging the duties appertaining to the office of trust and honor which His Excellency the Governor has been pleased to confer upon me. I beg to thank you for you for your kind expressions of good feeling for those so dear to me as well as to myself, and trust that the blessings of Divine Providence may continue to you all.

A deputation of the Blue Cravat Association then presented an address in these words;-To the Honorable Isaac Levy, Custos Rotulorum of the Parish of St. Catherine

Sir,- We the undersigned members of the Blue Cravats Literary Association of Spanish Town, tender you our sincere congratulations in the honor which His Excellency the Governor has been pleased to confer upon you. Your long residence in Spanish Town, and the great experience you possess on local matters, combined with your well known charitable habits, and other good qualities render you in every respect deserving of the position you now hold and we now say without hesitation that" you are the right man in the right place." As Members of the only Literary .Society in Spanish Town, we trust that you will always extend to Literary entertainment your patronage and generous support, and that ere long that will be good enough to use your influence" in obtaining for your parishioners the present. College Theatre as a Town Hall, or place for amusement of the public, the want of which is very much felt. We also hope that, that sound judgment which characterized your life will enable you in the discharge of your important duties which devolve upon you to avoid party influences, and that you will always in view the general interests of the community. That the Almighty will continue to shower down his choicest blessings upon yourself, wife and family, and guide your deliberations, in all things that you may turn to Benefit the parish of which you are now the respected Custos, shall ever be the fervent prayer of your very faithful friends.

To which His Honor replied

Gentlemen,-- I thank you very much for the congratulations contained in the address you have presented me. It is a source of pleasure to find not withstanding the many difficulties that must have risen from time to time, yon have been able to keep together an Association which I trust may long; continue to foster pursuits of so commendable a character, and I appreciate the opportunity you have now afforded me of becoming better acquainted with your Society. It will always be a great pleasure to me to support your laudable efforts and I shall not lose sight obtaining for you, as for the parishioners, every advantage tending to promote social and intellectual intercourse. I feel grateful for your truly kind expressions of good feeling for my wife and family as well as for myself, and I pray you to accept our sincere best wishes for your continued welfare.

Another deputation was then presented from the ancient Order of Foresters, and the following address was read:

To the Honorable Isaac Levy, Custos Rotulorum of the Parish of St. Catherine

The humble address of the Ancient order of Foresters 'Friendly Society Court Jackson, No. 6419, in the town of St. Jago de la Vega, in the Parish of St. Catherine.

We the officers and brothers of this Court hail with the greatest satisfaction and pleasure your honor's accession to the head of the Magisterial Bench of this parish

As an old Parishioner and leading Merchant amongst us we do not matter you Honor that saying in our humble opinion that respected Representative of our most gracious Queen not have selected a better and a more enterprising man to fill the place of your Honor's late predecessor.

We welcome the advent of your Honor's promotion as auspicious of better days for our ancient town. And as indicating that liberal protection and justice will be honorably dealt without to rich and poor, young and old, and we feel assured that your honor will always maintain in your public capacity that hospitable and charitable state that has ever marked your private life.

We beg to introduce to your kind notice our Society composed of loyal citizens, and that we trust that your Honor will at all times, when legal, and in your power, give us aid and support.

We wish your Honor many long and happy days amongst us. Not only as a Custos but, as an old citizen of your town, and may your honor's family and yourself enjoy the fruits of good health and prosperity. This we assure your Honor is the earnest prayer of every true and accepted Forester of Court Jackson.

To which his Honor replied: --

Gentlemen. --I thank you sincerely for your con- congratulation on my inauguration as Chief ,Magistrate of .Saint Catherine. Always earnest in my endeavors to promote the interest and well being of the parish and its inhabitants with whom I have been so long connected. The general marks of appreciation I have had the honor of receiving from all classes of my fellow parishioners can only stimulate and strengthen me to retrain and increase your valued confidence.

I am especially grateful the high terms, which my name has been associated by your esteemed Society, and it will always be a source of great pleasure for me to aid and support so ancient and respected Order.

I thank you for your very kind expressions of good wishes to my family and myself, and I earnestly trust for a continuance of your welfare.

'The next deputation was from the St. Jago Chess Club, of which Dr. Wegg is the President, and he presented the following address; --To the Hon. Isaac Levy, Custos Rotulorum of the Parish of Saint Catherine.

We, the president and Members of the Saint Jago Chess Club, beg to be permitted to join in the' congratulations of all parishioners to you on the occasion of your elevation to the Chief Magistracy of St. Catherine, You have well earned this distinguished position; and the Governor in conferring the appointment upon you has manifested his appreciation of worth and benevolence.. We .are not desirous of exacting any promise from yon with regard to the administration of our municipal affairs, because we are conscious of your energies and abilities will be devoted to the best, interests of our community; but we wish, as a. Society, devoted to intellectual amusements to bring, under your notice the regrettable circumstances that Spanish Town is without a public room for literary or social entertainment. This evil could, we venture to suggest be removed by the restoration to us of that portion of the new buildings which was some time .ago converted into a lecture room for the Queen's Collage. That Collage has long since been abolished, but the fixtures and arrangements have been continued to the exclusion of the parishioners at whose cost (aided by Middlesex) from the other portions of the County of Middlesex, the building was erected. We do not wish to trench further on your time but we cannot abstain from expressing of gratitude to His Excellency for placing; one in whom the general community repose. Confidence, and for whom they all entertain the highest personal regard, at the head of our Municipal Institutions. In conclusion we desire to express our hope that you and your family will be blessed with long life and continued prosperity.

To which His Honor replied; --

Gentlemen,- I receive with much pleasure your sincere congratulations on the occasion of my elevation to the Chief Magistrate of .Saint Catherine. The deep interest which I have always manifested in local matters during my long residence among you will not, you may be assured, be less earnest, now that 1 am placed at head of our .Municipal Institutions ; and it will be my aim to further any project tending to promote the social, moral and intellectual advancement of the large body of inhabitants of this important Parish. Accepting cordial thanks for the good wishes expressed .by you towards my family and myself, and I earnestly hope that the like blessings may attend yourselves and your respective families.

The ceremony being over, Mr. Levy received the congratulations of his friends, and left the courthouse for St. Jago Park, amidst tremendous rejoicing.

The Luncheon AT ST. JAGO PARK.

Arriving at the residence of the new Custos "I found an immense table, literally covered with the good things of this life--even to roasted peacock. There was every variety of tropical fruit laid out in beds of tropical flowers, and every species of tropical preserve, until the table groaned with the ponderous collection of viands. Covers were laid for some three hundred guests, yet; there were more than could find seats. His Honor Custos sat at the head of the table. Col. Hacket, commander of the Forces, on his right; the Rev. James Phillippo, on his left. Amongst the many present we observed the Hon. D. P. Trench, the Hon. George Solomon, Mr. Joseph Reid, Mr. Robert Russell, Mr. Thomas Witter Jackson, the Rev. C. F. .Donet, Rev. John Radcliffe, and the Rev. Father Ryan Mr. Louis Verley, Mr. Charles A. Robinson, Mr. John Macphail. Mr. William Lee, Mr. Haim Barrow, Dr. James Phillippo Dr. Tompnett, Dr. F. Clarke, Dr. Moss, CB, Dr. Wegg, Dr. Cargill, Mr. J. Falconer, of Linstead, .Mr. George Abrahams, of Clarendon. Mr. Fonseca, Mr. Arthur Donet, .Mr. Manly Abraham, Mr. Phillip Levy. Mr. Eustace DeCordova, Col. Johnstone, Capt. .Shepherd, Major Prenderville", Mr. A. C. Sinclair, Mr. Justice Carter, Mr. Septimus Fenrtado, Mr. T. L. Young;, Mr. Isaac DaCosta, of Ewarton, Mr. W. B. Byles, Mr. Geo. Levy, M. E. B. Lynch,. Mr. W. T. Jamieson, Mr. French. L. Campbell. Mr. J. L.. Ashenheim, Mr. Laing Shaw, Mr. Gilbert Lyon, Mr. S. K. Magnus.

After Luncheon and the usual loyal toasts, the Custos proposed the health of His Excellency the Governor. The announcement was like an electric shock and was received with vociferous applause, and in a moment every gentleman was on his feet.. The Custos said it was not necessary for him so say more, but he was sure the men of .St. Catherine would join him in proposing the Health of the Governor, and that he might be long spared to promote the prosperity and happiness of the Isle of Springs. Some gentlemen about the middle of the room, then started, in the midst of the cheering which followed--"For He's a jolly good fellow,''

In excellent voice and well marked time, it was taken up with such enthusiasm by the entire audience that we were actually carried away with the belief that we were only listening to others, when we were positively singing with .all our might and as heartily us the rest. The music was not discordant, however, as these songs often are, but it had all the harmony of a powerful chorus. We thought we had come to the end of the verse, when somebody at the foot of the table struck up again to the same tune, and off they went again, With a hip-hip-hip hurrah,

With a hip-hip-hip hurrah, etc. And then when this was complete, the other end of the table responded with still more enthusiasm. For--He's a jolly good follow, etc,

and they sang like Trojans till we thought they would never end. After three choruses given, three times three for the Governor.

The Rev.. J. M. Phillippo proposed the health of the new Custos, Mr. Isaac Levy, which was received: with prolong cheering. . He said he was over eighty years of age, and of that period, fifty- three years had been spent in Jamaica, in the parish of .St. Catherine. He had in all those years known Mr. Levy, and had never heard anything: of him, but what was good and honorable (Hear, Hear.) In fact Mr. Levy had been 'the benefactor of his parish (Cheers.) He remembered when large districts fell into decay, and how Spanish Town was surrounded with nothing but bush, but the hand Isaac Levy had with unwearied enterprise made the wilderness to blossom the rose (renewed cheering.) Mr. Levy had profited by his Industry; he was the maker of his own fortune, for he was now a wealthy man, but with all his wealth, he had made others happy (prolonged applause). No one perhaps had traveled more in the parish than he (.Mr. Phillippo) said and every where he went the name of Isaac Levy was known, respected and blessed (Cheers). The poor and the sick, and those who were without friends, all spoke of Mr. Levy's generosity. Young men in business, and who had risen, blessed his name (vociferous applause) and the very cattle shouted aloud with joy as they grazed; upon his luxuriant magnificent pastures (cheers) The health of the new Custos was then drank with honors, and the scene at the drinking of the Governor' health was renewed.

Mr. Isaac Levy in returning thanks for the very handsome manner in which Mr. Phillippo had proposed his health, and the hearty way in which the guests had drank it, said he would say little; but trusted they would accept the will for the deed. He threw himself on their good feeling, for he was not gifted for speeches. He trusted, however, God would bless and all those present as he had prospered him. Prosperity was not easily earned, as some people thought--it had to be worked for. There was the same future for the young men of. Jamaica if they would only put their shoulders to the wheel and trust more in themselves than in the help of others. (Hear, Hear, and prolonged cheering)

Mr. Isaac Levy then proposed the health of the Magistrates of St. Catherine and said he hoped what ever difference might have existed In the parish either from parochial misunderstandings or otherwise the parish would become united, and that the people of St. Catharine would remain united people. (Cheers). He would do all he could to promote the good feeling, and if this desire was general, St. Catherine might proudly look upon old. St. Jago de la Vega. (Renewed Chorus.)

Mr. Joseph Reid, of Ewing's Caymanas responded, and said that he was sure that now they had a Custos of the people's choice, things would go on in St. Catherine as merrily as Marriage Bells. (Applause.)

Dr. Phillippo, on rising, and-- Something has been said about absentee magistrates. (Laughter.) I am one (Renewed laughter.) but is it because a man who has in. his time done his duty in the parish, that he is to be cast off because he lives in an adjoining parish ? (Hear, hear, and applause.) No sir. I am ready to do duty at any time when his Honor says he needs me. (Prolonged cheering.) We have got the right man in the right place, and I hope he may live long to continue a blessing to this parish. He has made it what it is, and if it had 'not been for Isaac Levy, St Jago Park would be growing in bush today. "Let us make our protest against subsidized Custos. (Prolonged cheering.) We want no more washed out old women at 600 Pounds a year. (Renewed cheering) and (a voice--the Rev. Mr. Radcliffe to Dr. Phillippo-you are too bad upon my old friend, Mr. Kemble) not a bit of it. (hear, hear.) let us have men of the people's choice, then we will have men who will be respected; men who the people will listen to, men who the people will do honor to, and will render obedience to, and who the magistrates will work with. no more paid Custos's.(cheering and renewed cheering.)

Mr. Isaac Levy then proposed the army and navy, the bulwarks and the pride of England he need say no more.

The Hon. Colonel Hacket, in command of the forces, replied, and in the course of his remarks he said he would not talk politics. He had heard a great deal about crown governments since he arrived in the island, and he thought a good Governor a very desirable object, .still it was a difficult matter for a Governor to please every body here, in. Jamaica, the Government allowed water to come in free, and taxed brandy heavily. he hoped that there were none present or absent who would like him to reverse this condition of things, and let in the brandy free, while he imposed a heavy tax upon fresh water. (Loud laughter and prolonged cheering.)

The Custos then proposed the health of the ministers of religion in Jamaica remarking that but for them we might not always get wise council, and in proposing this toast he would associate the names of the rector (.Mr. Donet) and the Rev. Radcliffe).

The Rev. Mr. Douet, in a few words responded, and. said the unity he had observed on this occasion was to him and every other person most gratifying; had hoped that his honor the Custos would live many years to enjoy the office to which he had just, been elevated, to the delight of St. Catherine, for they had now got the right man in the right place."

The Rev John Radcliffe. then rose and was received with loud applause. he said that in coming into Spanish Town, he felt that it was something like approaching the falls of Niagara for which ever way he went there, he heard nothing but, about Niagara. it was Niagara everywhere ; men therefore became what might be termed Niagraized (laughter) and here, in Spanish town, on that day, men had become; absolutely Levyized (renewed laughter.) well it was a good thing- Spanish town had every reason to be proud of her son-and the hoped Mr. levy might be long spared to St. Catherine and the country to occupy the position of chief magistrate. There was only one' honor more that he would liked to have conferred upon the new Custos on this occasion against him, but some how or another circumstances were against him, or he might have managed it- he had been able to confer upon two recent Custos's - and what now do you think that honor would be? Putting his two hands upon the table and looking at the new Custos through his gold spectacles, (observed - a pause) to make you an elder of the Kirk of Scotland!(laughter and prolonged applause)

The Custos Then proposed the health of a body of gentlemen in Jamaica when the country could not afford to want, for without the him very little would be known what was going on in the press of Jamaica - and with this toast he would associate the name of an old friend Mr. George Levy. (Applause)

Mr. George Levy said he felt honored on being called on to respond for the press. The press occupies an important place in every country, and in Jamaica it was in no way behind - when it wielded its pen for the public it was powerful for good. It was true, men did not view all public questions in the same light, because there were many stand points, but he believed what ever the press did was consequently done. (applause) The task was beset with difficulty, for its members were very often called on to express views very distasteful and objectionable to many, still it was the public duty, and the public expected the press to be at least honest, even if they happened to be roundly abused for their candor. It was necessary, however, that the press, if it was to be honored and respected should have the courage of its convictions. He hoped the time would come, when the press of Jamaica would be better understood than it is now. - (Applause)

Mr. Galt, on being called on to respond, said he was taken by surprise, he did not expect to be called on, when he saw gentlemen on his left and on his right, who were his. Seniors in the profession- Mr. Charles Campbell and Mr. George levy in the profession. he could only express the satisfaction he felt in beholding that day, such a unity of public feeling in Spanish Town. Some people had gone so far as to say there was no public opinion in Jamaica, and that there was no press. (Laughter) but anyone holding that opinion happened to be near St. Catherine on that day, they would have a change of their minds, for they had before them an instance where public opinion was not only very unanimous, but very decided and very loud (Applause)

The most gratifying feature was that it was a voice, which, at last, had been listened to by the government, for on that day the prayer of the people of St. Catherine has been answered and they had got a Custos, who was of the peoples choice and the right man in the right place. (cheers) It had been the misfortune of the country, under the present system of government., that the voice of the people had not been respected or even listened to, no matter how respectful that prayer had been, the people of Jamaica had been practically told they had no right or an opinion, and Sir William Grey had told .Mr. Westmoreland, in the council, that it was sufficient for the governor to ask, it was for the people to comply, (hear) and thank god, it looked now as if the people were to have a change as if a new chapter in the history of the colony 'had been opened by .Sir Anthony .Musgrave and that the voice of the people of Jamaica was to be respected in the future. hither to men were made Custoses and .members of .municipal hoards were the salaried official of the administration-very often men who had no sympathy with the people and for whom the people positively had no respect whatever --and what had been the consequences! Animosities, bitter animosities' discontent - grumbling - hatred of imported officials-and every possible mischief opposition and obstructions to the administration. (Prolonged cheering.) But what a lesson has been taught that day; .Mr. Gall said, rejoice to think that the administration sees the effect of listening to the public voice.- (renewed cheering) look; at .St. Catherine to-day :-(hear, hear.) yes, here is a specimen of the happiness and good feeling, which the whole country might be blessed with; only the public wish was more consulted than it has been. If Mr. Levy had made the wilderness of St. Catherine to blossom as the rose, how might not government of Jamaica stimulate other parishes to ' give them a little more of their own way, in putting the right men in the right place."-(Loud cheers) yes, .Sir Anthony has touched the hearts of the people of St. Catherine, and all our sister parishes must thank the people of Spanish Town for the manner in which they have pointed out how other parishes might be made glad and to similarly rejoice- (a voice-no more subsidized Custoses.). Dr. Phillippo has expressed a very general opinion, which; Jamaica will endorse, that we want no more old washed-out Custoses,. subsidized with 600 pounds per year. The press is undoubtedly the mouth piece of public sentiment; it is not always correct, either in judgement or in tone, but no man claims to be always right, and has never admitted to a mistake - the press is like all of mankind - fallible.(laughter) he (Mr. gall) believes however, whatever the press expressed what was done from an honest conviction, as Mr. levy had observed, the press has very often to deal firmly, to use strong, and sometimes unpleasant language towards men, for when the members of the press had the highest and most profound respect (Prolonged cheers and cries for Mr. Campbell)

Mr. Charles L. Campbell said, it was gratifying to know that the press had been useful even in few matters: it was not so much that they had dealt with so many questions, as that in a certain few they had succeeded in being of use. The press had often troubles, and duties not infrequently encompassed with difficulties, for it often happened with an editor, that the time he was being most soundly abused for the stand he look in some public matter e was convinced in his own mind hat he was only doing his duty (cheers). It was hard under many circumstances to feel that. the conviction of one's inward feelings exposed him to this, but it was nevertheless a duty. it .was not always that the press were agreed, they very often disagreed, still he was convinced that although each might disapprove of the way another dealt with a question, nevertheless he was convinced each was in earnest for the public weal and thoroughly honest in his convictions that the course pursued was the right one.- (hear hear and cheers) he rejoiced to see such good feelings as was being exhibited that day. he rejoiced that the governor had seen the justice of yielding to the Popular wish.-(cheers.)-St. Catherine had got the right man in the right place, and he hoped Mr. Levy would live to enjoy the good wishes of a community in which he was so dearly loved Mr. Levy was a son of Jamaica, and there were others present no less distinguished- Mr. Verley and .Mr. Robinson-(loud cheer)- they had shown what industry and perseverance could do, and they had been the benefactors. as they were the examples of their country-(renewed cheering.) Mr. Campbell referred to the son of the Custos who was on his right and hoped that when the present Custos was gathered to his fathers. the son might succeed to the seat his father would leave vacant, and all St. Catherine should say, where is the worthy son of a worthy father. (Prolonged applause)

Mr. Emanuel levy (son of the Custos) then rose, but as we were called, by the lateness of the hour, and the departing train for Kingston, to leave, we are therefore unable to report more.

At seven o'clock in the evening the town was again stirred, and thousands of people were assembling in front of Lyon's restaurant to listen to the enlivening music of the band, as well as see the illumination. Banquets were given by the two lending clubs of the town. the Blue Cravats association and chess club, to each of which. the Custos was invited. They were both well attended, and some very able toasts were given by the members in drinking, the; heaths of her .Majesty the Queen and the Royal Family, His. Excellency the Governor, the Custos of the parish, and the press of Jamaica. The proceedings of the day were brought to a close at 12 o'clock, with satisfaction to all.

Obituary of Isaac Levy

Galls News Letter


With profound grief have we in common with all Jamaica watched the fatal illness of the hon. Isaac Levy deepen into certainty. The universal expressions of sympathy which came from all classes but partially represented the hold he had upon the affections of the people of Jamaica, today the poor realize that they have lost a large hearted, philanthropic and constant friend; and the higher classes feel that in their ranks there is a vacant place which it will be difficult to fill. The whole colony have in various ways expressed their high appreciation of his character and work.

Jamaica looks upon him with a degree of pleasure because his life, is a most single example of improvement; of a man overcoming obstacles and making progress under disadvantages. he was born in Spanish Town and rose by his own exertions to one of the most desirable positions in fame and fortune in the colony and as god prospered him, he showed his gratitude by enquiring; for what end prosperity is given, and how it may best accomplish the end of the giver. he sent a refining, purifying influence through every department of life, and no favorite of fortune could have repaired to a palace, where the rays of royal favor were to be centred on him, with a more eager spirit and quicker step than the late Isaac Levy hastened to the abodes of want to alleviate the misery and pain of the helpless. His strong love for the poor was not a wild enthusiasm. It was founded on a clear deliberate perception of their immortal destination. it. was his love for the poor which gave to his labours efficacy and which gave perpetuity to the all affection and reverence by which his name will ever be remembered.

He married a sister of Mr. Hiam Barrow of St. Thomas in the Vale and for many years he was one of the most active business men in the parish of St. Catherine, being the head of the long established firm of Messrs. Isaac Levy & Co.. He gradually invested the profits of his business in landed property in and around the parish, which he stocked and cultivated and by so doing he created labor and circulated large sums of money among those in his employment, who might otherwise have been pressed hard for a livelihood. The late Mr. Phillippo, the oldest missionary of the colony, said of him on the day of his being sworn in as Custos of St. Catherine, everything he touched turned into gold and the desert places of St. Catherine and St. Mary he has made to blossom as the rose." In business he was respected for his honesty and liberality; he never failed to carry out his promise and his word was his bond. As a Custos his work is seen on every hand--market, burial ground, race course, a theatre, water work, and his last public enterprise was a public square. When Lord Scott visited Jamaica with the two sons of the prince of Wales, he accepted an invitation with the young princes, to St. Jago park--the only private invitation which they accepted in Jamaica.

His last official act was to call the public meeting which was arranged to be held yesterday, to memorialize the secretary of state for an extended term of office to Sir Anthony Musgrave, so that the commercial status of our colony may be made secure notwithstanding his severe and protracted illness, death found him at work, for his life shows he was born to action.

Cum moriar medium solvar et inter opus

'When death shall come, he me will doubtless find

Doing something that I had designed'

St. Catherine has lost a wise councilor and guide for whom she may well mourn, and not only her, but the whole colony. His is a name which gives Jamaica something of real worth , and the most graceful act, by which St. Catherine's grief may be assuaged, would be the appointment of Mr. E.G. Levy to the chair so honorably filled by his lamented father. Mr. E.G. Levy is a young man of great promise and tact, and to him the people look for the same characteristics which so nobly distinguished his father. During his father's illness he performed the duties of Custoship with a dignified grace and comprehensiveness of the obligations and duties of the office.

Around the grave of the late Mr. Isaac Levy we bow our heads in unison with his family and the people of St. Catherine, and from it we turn to see the promise and potency of his lifework exemplified in the work which we hope to see his son called upon to fulfil

(Other additions)

The public meeting, which was called by the late Hon. Isaac Levy, was held in the municipal boardroom yesterday. On the motion of Mr. Jus. Sam Facey the Revd. Mr. McCalla was called to the chair. The meeting was adjourned on the motion of Mr. Justice Facey as a mark of respect to the late Custos Levy. Mr. Campbell, railway contractor, in moving a vote of thanks to the chairman expressed his sympathy with the purpose for which the meeting was called and it was left with the chairman to appoint another day and to call a meeting accordingly.

(The Funeral Tuesday, 8th August, 1882 - written and posted on Wednesday, 9th August, 1882)

The late Hon. Isaac Levy, of St. Jago Park, Custos of St. Catherine, was buried yesterday between 5 and 6 o'clock, p.m. a special train left Kingston at 3:45, for the convenience of those gentlemen in the city, who desired to be present at the funeral. At 4:30 there were over 100 carriages on the lawn before Mr. Levy's residence and about 5 o'clock, the long procession of carriages, with an average of three persons in each carriage, moved quietly along the road to the English German Israelitish Burial ground. The Cathedral bell of Spanish Town and the bells of the churches in Old Harbour and Linstead, tolled while the remains were being moved to their last resting place. The Government and Legislative Council were represented by the Lieutenant Governor and the Honorables Noel Walker and George Solomon. Every trade and profession was represented, and the oldest people in Spanish Town affirm that never was so large a funeral in the parish before. The roads from the house to the burial ground, were lined on each side by hundreds of men, women and children, and all the windows of the houses along the route taken by the cortege were crowded with eager faces to see the last of this kind and good man. The funeral services were performed by the Rev. Fred Landor of the English German Synagogue in this city, and he delivered a very impressive oration over the grave before the coffin was lowered, which he eulogized the deceased's goodness of heart and clearness of intellect. In the crowds congregated on the road were to be heard numbers of poor people recalling individual acts of kindness which that had received at the hands of him, whose departure they now deplored. This event of yesterday will stamp the day in remembrance of every resident of Spanish Town.

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