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Edited and Published by tlie luinates. Entered at tlie Post Office at Stillwater Minn, as Second Class Mail Matter. Subscription Kates. THE PRISON MIUKOIt is issued every Wednes day morning at the following rates: One Year SI.OO tSix Months *»0 Three Monttis 35 Single Copies o Subscriptions must be paid invariably in ad vance. Advertising rates given upon application. Address. EDITOR PRISON MIRROR. Stillwater. Minn. THE PRISON MIRROR is a weekly paper pub lished in the Minnesota state prison. All matter ■published in its columns is contributed by the inmates, except that properly credited. Its sup port must come from the outside as every inmate is given a paper without cost. It is published in •the interest of the prison library and after paying ■for tbe printing outfit, contiibuted $l5O to the library tund the first year. Its objects are to en courage individual intellectual effort, provide a healthy journal for the inmates of this and other and, above all. to acquaint the outside •world with the needs oi the prison by reflect ng its inner life and thus aid :he cause of moral ad vancement and prison reform. THE MIRROR will be sent to any address on receipt of subscrip t on price: sl.ooper year, 00c. for six months. I.HPOIITAST LliCi I ELATION. The pies.-, ol the state vt-iy geheialiy con cedes that no question will come before the ‘next Legislature of Minnesota of greater importance than the “Prison Problem.” Not only is it important to the state that the inmates ot tlie prisons contribute to their maintenance as a matter of economy and for the prisoners health of mind and body, but there are other grave considera tions in tlie solution of the problem which demand tlie attention of the law-makers. The state board of Correction and Chari ties have looked farther into the intricacies of facts than the mere surface consideration of self evident truths and their recommen dations will no doubt receive due attention. Here are some of the recommendations: In reference to the state prison and St. Cloud reformatory— That an ad visory board of pardons be established, consisting of the attorney gen eral and four members, one person to be nomi nated by each district judge of the state, from which nominees the judges of the supreme court shall appoint the board—not more than three members to belong to the same political party. That an annual appropriation of $2,500 be made to the prisoners’aid society to be organ ized under sec. 19 of chap. 203 of the general laws of 1887; said appropriation to be used for paying •the sulary and expenses of the agent of the socie ty and for its office expenses. That the prison warden and the superintendent of the St. Cloud reformatory be authorized to pay the good conduct fund from receipts from the sale of manufactured articles or from receipts of c.on vict labor at an average of 10 cents a day to each man for each working day, the difference in rate to be based not upon the value of the work per formed but upon the good conduct and willing disposition of the convict. Tnat the parole system, with the system of grades and marks, be extended to prisoners serv ing their first sentence in the state prison. That a brison school be established at Stillwater; that the prison warden be authorized in his dis cretion to retain a port.on of any prisoner's good ■dime money on his discharge for not longer than .six months or to pay the sun. in installments. The board of pardons and parole system combined, will work a radical change in the prison system of the state. Under the new •order of things, should tlie Legislature recognize these most humane recommenda tions. the poorest man in the prison, re gardless of friends and influence, will re •ceive tlie same consideration, and his claims for pardon will he given as thorough attention as the most influential and wealthy. The board of pardons should be so thoroughly beyond influence as to place every applicant for clemency upon the merits of his case. It would be but just to all that application to them he restricted to the applicant himself, and the facts as they are learned upon investigation. Then will the prosecuting attorney, the judge and the prosecuting witnesses recognize that abso lute justice is a possibility, and they will no longer hold the liberty of every man in prison in their hands. Then will the crim inal law cease to be a collection agency and be made to serve its true purpose—the purification of society. Nd greater injus tice can be imagined to the im prisoned than to allow his enemies to dictate when lie shall be lib erated, and this the present system does. TO THK PI ULir. Prosecuting attorneys are men and prefer conviction to acquittal, for conviction adds another star to their crown of professional glory. Judges are but men, and while they, as a class are less susceptible to public clamour, they are not always deaf to it. Prosecuting witnesses, as a rule, glory in conviction and consequent imprisonment as a solace for tbe wrong they have suffered; in other w ords, for revenge pure and simple, and the good or evil influence of imprison ment upon the victim is of no moment to them. If Executive clemency is sought t hey stand ready to interpose objection, un less they can be silenced by money. Is it not true? Who will deny it who knows tlie process of the criminal laws of the country? PH<EM\ VS. NEMO. This issue closes a discussion between two of our contributors and we feel it due tlie readers ot our paper to state that the extent to which each side lias been heard would not have been tolerated under any other circumstances than those surrounding this discussion. The relations of religion to the reforma tion of tlie convict is of such moment that none will question its importance, what ever may be the varied views upon the sub ject. and the principal question arising under this discussion is the propriety of permitting such a controversy to run to such a limit as has this. We are of the opinion that philanthropists of every grade and nature can glean some useful lessons from the past five issues of The Mirror upon this subject. The main questions be tween these writers are: Should the pris oner's professions of religion gain him the credit of being religious? Is not the incen tive to hypocrisy so great that the religious professions of the prisoner should be taken with grave doubt? Should tlie advantages for religious instruction be increased, and would these instructions, on the basis of the plan in vogue in tlie Michigan state prison, which we published in The Mirror of the date of Nemo’s first article (where a Sunday school and experience meeting at which tlie prisoners take part, is a part of the plan), be beneficial on the whole? Is the prison a place where men are more susceptible to religious influence, and more liable to become Christians than on the out side of prison walls? The other points of difference between the writers have arisen “during the heat of debate,” and are not essential to the issue involved. We do not feel called upon to decide the question, but are of the opinion that the life of the prisoner is not such as to arouse a deep and lasting reverence for religion. It is altogether possible for one to be religious in any condition, but that the prison tends to make one so. or that it schools his mind to such an extent that he eagerly grasps tlie doctrine of salvation, we must certainly deny. Deception enters too largely into his life to cause his mind to dwell upon holy things, and the natural tendency of prison discipline is to rob the prisoner of self-re liance, individuality and manhood. Those who do not succumb are to be congratu lated. and we say above all else that the prisoner should guard against, from the moment of his incarceration to tlie moment ot release, is 10-s of manhood. Tlie state prison Inspectors ot this state start on the loth of this month on a tour of inspection of the prisons of othefr states. Perhaps when they return they will be able to suggest a plan that will furnish our criminals something else to do than read newspapers and play checkers at the honest laboring men's expense. The law-abiding citi zen has enough to do to feed and clothe himself and family without being taxed to support nearry four hundred felons in ease, luxury and all the comforts of life, except freedom and taxation.— Litchfield News-Ledger. Contrast the foregoing with the follow- ing: Convicts in penitentiaries should be allowed pay for the labor they perform, and their wages, after the deduction ot a reasonable amount for their support, should be given to their dependent families, when they have such, and in other cases saved to give them a start in life when their terms of sentence expire. No man, not even a criminal, should be made to work for the state while his family are starving.—Dubuque (la.) Indepen dent. One sees the prisoner as a man, entitled to some consideration as such, and looks upon his imprisonment as a necessity for the pro tection of society. Tlie other sees the old doctrine of punishment and vengeance—the blasting of every hope, every true purpose in life, because of tlie violation of a law. One is tolerant, is a man himself and knows men’s weaknesses may lead them into error; tlie other poses as self-righteous and sees nothing in the weaker side of human nature to justify an act denominated a crime. The Litchfield man imagines that the idleness of the convict places him in his ideal haven of rest and perfect content ment. He imagines that a convict is some kind of a being so different fiom himself that they exist because they have to, and only ask enough to eat. clothes to keep them warm and a comfortable place t»> sleep. A visit to the prison would open h ; s vision to ihe fact that convicts are men, and perhaps some few might be as narrow in their judgment upon some questions as he, but upon til's quest On the most ignorant man within the walls would inform him that work is preferable to idleness, and instead of idleness being his ideal existence, it fs tlie greatest punishment that can lie in flicted upon him. When one of the Evangelists on Sabbath requested that “Those who desire the prayers of tlie Christian churches of this city will rise to their feet,” lie certainly showed a want of judgment. If he was desirous of learning tlie extent of religious senti ment in the audience, the method resorted to was inadequate. If he sought to fathom the minds of his hearers as to the effect of the services just concluded, or if there was no particular purpose and tlie request was made for the want of something else to fill in the time, we would beg to suggest its untimely occurrence. Neither of our Chap lains have ever, nor would they ever do such a thing, for they are too well acquainted with human nature and with those who re ceive their teaching. Such a course is far from discretion at any time or place, and a prison is certainly the last place on earth where it would be justifiable. If it proves anything, it is, that men will usually say or Uo the thing which pleases, when religion is under consideration. Belief is not con sulted, neither is hypocrisy clearly outlined, for some who rise and some who refuse to countenance such methods are believers. Tlie prison ought not to be considered as containing the representative religious men. and tlie few real Christians who are here are not of that class who desire to publicly proclaim their convictions. A life-man in Sing Sing prison has sent twenty dollars for campaign purposes to aid in tbe struggle to advance the cause of temperance. It was a little fund laid by to bury him when death ended imprison ment. In his letter he touchingly says; “1 have suffered and seen others suffer so much from the curse—rum —that I deem it my duty—as it is the duty of every man who has a spark of love for humanity in Him —to do all in my humble power to check this crying evil. lam told that liquor dealers have passed a resolution for tlie purpose of prohibiting ex-convicts from selling rum. 1 hope they have passed such a resolution and if they have, I, a convict, from the bottom of my heart, thank them for it, and 1 will go further and say, that the ex con vict, who would sell rum. knowing from his own experience the misery and degradation it has produced, is heartless, not fit to live and ought to be shot.”— I The Cameron (Mo.) Vindicator. Commenting upon our statement regard ing the problems suggested to Sec. Hart by his jail investigations, especially that reflect ing upon the price of board furnished by Sheriffs to prisoners in their charge, in which we ventured thej assertion that twenty five cents per prisoner is ample to pay for the food consumed each week per man, the Brainard Dispatch says: THE PRISON MIRROR man must be a stranger to Sheriff Spalding of Crow Wing county, or he would never make the assertion. Yes, we have no acquaintance with Sheriff Spalding and we may be mistaken in other instances in the smaller towns, but we had specially in mind the sheriff of a very popu lous county in the state. In our issue of Nov. 28, we are respons ible for an error in the article by Phoenix. The words, “an hour on tlie grade” should have been, “an hour in the vard.” For The Mirror. There are only forty-five female lawyers in the country but they talk like sixty. The greatest treasure of life is content ment; the greatest possession, health; tlie greatest ease, a clear conscience; and the best medicine, a true friend. Trust and worry cannot mix together any more than oil and water. Men think that women are good material for angels but not good enough for citizen ship. The three qualifications for an efficient worker are grace, grit and gumption, these three, “and the greatest of these is”— gumption. In ninety-nine cases out of a hundred, the safe side and just side of a question, is tlie generous side, and the merciful side. Great issues make great men. But when tlie sea of political issues gets shallow. little fishes only, can swim. It has been estimated that if thirty-two million people should clasp hands they would reach around tlie globe. Very likely but some of them-would get their feet wet. OYSTERS! AT N- PATWELL’S. CARPETS! If you have a Carpet to buy this Fall, and don’t wish to make up any Blue room or Pink room, or anything: out of the usual run, so It will not take a regular Carpet stoek to suit you, eall at the LADIES’ BAZAAR. We only handle good, common-sense, everyday Carpets, nothing fancy. but on these we claim and know we can save yon a few dollars on your pur chase. The profit, what little there is,will not have to pay interest on a great big lot of money invested in stuff that only sells once in a while. So you can see that we can sell you a Car- pet for a little less than those that carry a regu- lar line. Respectfully, A.6.ScMfcr&Cfl. STILLWATER, MINN ELLIOTT HOUSE, Cor. Third Sc Chestnut Sts., STILLWATER, .... MINN. TERMS, $1.50 PER DAY. J. E. ELLIOTT, Manager. M. E. CAPRON, —PROPRIETOR OF THE— PHCENIX Livery, Hack AND BOARDING STABLES, 213 & 215 Chestnut St., Stillwater, Minn Double or single rigs, with or without drivers, at any hour, day or night. As good turnouts as can be found in the Northwest. Li Wise and Otherwise.