THE CHARITY ORGANISATION SOCIETY.
[TO THE EDITOR OP THE " SPECTATOR.")
cannot expect you to afford me the space in your- columns necessary to go into the details connected with Mr.. Solly's letter in the Spectator of April 7th, though quite prepared to do so, with all the necessary proofs in print. The writer of the article in the Charity Organisation Review has not, I think, been in a position to know many, if any, of the earlier members of the council, but few now remain, and consequently could
hardly have written his article from original sources. I have endeavoured to put in as few words as possible, what may be
considered the crux of the whole matter. When in your review of Mr. Solly's book, the words " which he founded, promoted,. or directed," were followed by " The Charity Organisation, Society," it appeared to me to imply that he was the originator-
of the Society or wished to be thought so. But any one reading- the prospectus now before me (for I do not trust to memory), of Mr. Solly's and the late Dr. Hawkesley's Society would be- more reminded of General Booth's Salvation Army than the- present Charity Organisation Society. However, in order to- make it quite clear for the future, I write this to say that I an quite willing to decline any further pretensions to be the- originator of the Society, if either Mr. Solly or the friends of the- late Dr. Hawkesley, or any one else, can show any proposal which. nearly resembles the outline of that now in daily use, written by me in December 1860. And by this I mean not only in idea, but as having been submitted for approval to any-
council or board. Mr. Solly states his meeting to have taken. place in 1868, whilst my paper (I have the original) is dated, 1860. When this can be replied to, I shall waive my claim of priority of the details of the present rough sketch, but not' till then.
The following is the outline of the scheme which I read to- Lord Lichfield, at his house in Portman Square, with whom. I may probably have left it, and as he was then chairman of the newly created Charity Organisation Society, he very likely took it there, I am quite sure I did not :-
(1.) Sub-division of London into Districts (now the Poor-law' Unions).
(2.) A General Board Meeting weekly (now the Council).
(3.) A Local Officer (now the Local District Committee).
(4.) An Investigating Officer (now called the Charity Agent). (5.) Relief after proper Investigation (now given by each Local District Committee).
(6.) Meetings of Local Officers (now takes place occasionally)...
[We cannot afford space for a discussion of this antiquarian question of origin.—En. Spectator.]