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Probabilities and Expectations of Life among the Poor of the City of Bristol.
BRISTOL AND SOUTH WALES CO-OPERATIVE LIFE ENDOWMENT AND GUARANTEE Co. -This Co. was projected in 1868 with a regis. cap. of £2000, but what has become of it we have not yet discovered. Mr. E. A. Theobald was one of the promoters. BRISTOL TOWN FIRE OFFICE,- This asso. was founded towards the close of the last century. In 1805 it stood third in amount of duty paid by the country offices, its amount being £3320 18s. 4d.- -an amount more than as large again as that paid by the Bristol Crown office in the same year. It had either died out before 1824 or changed its name to the Bristo! F. or Bristol Union F.
BRISTOL UNION F. AND L. OFFICE, founded in Bristol in 1814 as a F. office, and added L. bus. in 1818. It paid F. duty in 1824, £2308; in 1834, £2552; in 1843 it had reached £3160. In 1844 its F. bus. was trans. to Imperial F. What became of the L. bus. we have not yet learned, but we have seen that Mr. Rankin, one of its Secretaries, brought his practical experience to bear in the construction of several mort. tables possessing considerable interest.
The later rates adopted in the L. department were 10 p. c. below the Northampton rates -that course being determined upon after the Bristol mort. T. had been prepared. BRITANNIA FIRE.-A Co. under this title was projected in 1861, by Mr. Alfred Thomas Jay. It did not go forward.
BRITANNIA FIRE ASSOCIATION, founded in 1868, with an authorized cap. of £500,000, in 50,000 shares of £10 [power to increase to £1,000,000]. First issue 15,000 shares. The prosp. says:
The Britannia F. Asso. is founded with the view of cultivating F. ins. bus. of a select character, inclusive of the ins. of dwelling houses and shops, and of the furniture and goods therein.
Notwithstanding the rapid increase of F. ins. during the last ten years, it would appear that of the insurable property in the U. K., the value of which is estimated at about £4,000,000,000, about onethird only is protected by ins.
The recent reduction in the Gov. duty from 38. to 15. 6d. p.c. has already given a great impetus to F. ins., and there is but little doubt that the provident classes throughout the country will now almost universally adopt the wise precaution of protecting their property against loss by fire.
The B. F. A. has been formed under peculiarly favourable circumstances, from having immediately available the very extensive and valuable agency and other connexions of the Briton Medical and General L. Asso., with which the Britannia F. Asso. will be intimately connected. Several of the directors are members of the boards of each Co., and the business of the F. Co. (although tetally distinct and separate from that of the Briton Asso., so far as its assets and liabilities are concerned), being conducted on the premises, and to some extent by the staff of the Briton So., the expenses necessarily attending the efficient working of a large F. office will be materially curtailed.
The Co. is soundly constituted, and most respectably managed.
BRITANNIA LIFE ASSU. Co. [No. 1.], founded in 1837, with a cap. of £1,000,000, in 10,000 shares of £100. It was conducted in its earlier years entirely on the proprietary plan. In 1841 the Co. obtained a special Act of Parl.-4 & 5 Vict. c. ix.-An Act for Regulating Legal Proceedings by and against the Britannia L. Assu. Co. The Co. might sue or be sued in the name of its Sec., Resident Director, or any Director for the time being; decrees or judgments might be enforced against the Co. or any of its shareholders -such shareholders to be reimbursed; former shareholders might be sued. Indeed, the constitution of the Co. appears to have embodied the principle of unlimited liability in its fullest force.
In 1845, Mr. Peter Morrison being then Resident Director, a statement was put forward that the Co. had issued 6000 policies in less than 8 years; and there was then inaugurated by the Co. a system of "half-credit rates of prem.," with a special prosp. to explain its advantages! The Co. also about this date commenced to issue pol. on the "mixed" plan -called in a special prosp. then issued the "Mutual Assu. Branch"-which led to some confusion, there being already a Britannia Mut. L. Asso. working in connexion with this Co. The first division of profits was to be made "at the expiration of the year 1849, and of every subsequent year. Four-fifths of profits "ascertained by strict mathematical calculations to be distributed to parti. pol.
The tables used by the Co. were stated to have been "computed from authentic and complete data expressly for the use of this inst.," which was most prob. entirely untrue. At a later period an "Orphans and Childrens Endowment Branch was estab. We shall speak of some of the tables for this branch under ENDOWMENTS. Mr. E. R. Foster was "Resident Director," and Mr. Andrew Francis was Sec. In 1865 the bus. of the Co. was trans. to the Briton Medical and General. BRITANNIA LIFE INS. Co. [No. 3] was projected in 1868, with a proposed cap. of £100,000. Mr. J. A. G. Merrington and Mr. James Beal were two of the regis. promoters. Mr. Gavin was the Man. We are not aware if the Co. be still in existence. BRITANNIA MUTUAL L. Asso. [No. 2.], founded in 1839, under the title of the Standard of England, and under the authority of Letters Patent, granted in pursuance of Act 7 Wm. IV. and I Vict. c. 73, passed in 1836. This is one of several ins. asso. which obtained powers of this class. [LEGISLATION FOR INS. Asso.] The Co. was restrained by the Standard (1825) from retaining its original title. It had been founded as a "mixed" office, but on the change of name became entirely mut. The prosp. said:
It is an estab. principle that in a mut. assu. so. a yearly valuation of the liabilities is of essential importance to its security; whilst at the same time it enables the members to participate in the profits at a much earlier period, and to a far greater extent than would be otherwise safe or practicable. Such system has accordingly been adopted in this Asso.
Then there was a great parade about the half-credit system; and finally the following
The Britannia Mut. L. Asso. is altogether distinct from and independent of the Proprietary office transacting bus. under the name of the Britannia L. Assu. Co. The only connexion between the two estab. is that their affairs are conducted on the same premises, and by the same officers; by which means the entire disbursements of the Mut. Asso. are reduced to a small per-centage on its receipts; and thus the large expenditure of a separate estab., which generally entails a heavy burthen on the members during the infancy of such sos., and interferes materially with a due apportionment of the early profits, is to great degree avoided.
The Asso. absorbed the businesses of the following offices: in 1843 that of the South of England; in 1844 that of the Lond. and Westminster Mut.
In 1865 the bus. of the Asso. was trans. to and united with that of the Briton Medical and General. The Resident Director of the Asso. was Mr. E. R. Foster; the Sec. Mr. Andrew Francis.
BRITISH ALLIANCE FIRE, LIFE, AND CATTLE ASSU. Co., projected in 1853, but nothing came of it beyond prov. regis. It proposed to transact fidelity guarantee bus. also. BRITISH ALLIANCE FIRE, LIFE, AND GUARANTEE INS. Co., projected in 1868 by Mr. [the Rev.] Edwin Yelland, with a proposed cap. of £100,000 in shares of £1. The Co. appears to have passed through several stages of transformation. It was regis. under the title given above. In an early prosp. it was designated "The British Alliance Assu. Corp. Lim., with which is incorporated the Unconditional Assu. Co." This prosp. contains several features which we must notice:
Commercial Travellers' Assurances.—An arrangement has been made by which the interests of this influential body have been specially considered. By assuring their lives, commercial gentlemen may secure to their widows liberal annu., or they can themselves receive an allowance while out of employment, or during temporary disablement. And should they live to a certain age, they may secure an annu. of from 9 to 14 p.c. on the sum assu., according to their age at the time when the annu. is entered upon.
Annuities for Clergymen. This is an especial system expressly introduced for the benefit of aged ministers or their widows. While secure for the office, it gives the minister of religion advantages never before conceded, but which this office will fully develope, in a manner peculiar and valuable. Educational Annuities.-A system by which, after 8 or more small annu. payments, parents will be entitled to receive the amount of £10 and upwards, for a period of 6 years, either for school or college purposes. This most desirable arrangement secures to children a liberal education, however limited the means of the parent, and by a proper application of it, the largest family can be educated at the least inconvenience. Should the child die before the annu. commences, the whole of the money paid will be returned,
Then, under the head of "Marine Assu. Branch," there is the following announcement: Marine Assurances.-Officers of all grades of H.M. Royal Navy, or in the Mercantile Marine Service, can assure upon a new system, whereby all extra prem. for risk of sea service is abolished, and the ordinary home prem. alone charged.
And under “Building Assu. Branch" the following:
This branch of the Co.'s bus. has been estab. to supersede and remedy the defects of building sos. generally, and also to embody in one simple system the advantages of those sos., and the security of life assu. in connexion with them.
It was further announced that "the surplus income and cap. will be invested as per building tables, and by advances to policy-holders upon undoubted personal security, thus obtaining a large amount of profit on the working of that cap., and preventing any loss arising to the Co. from placing the money in questionable undertakings." There was another scheme for "reduction of debt upon places of worship," but the plan upon which it was to be worked was not stated in detail.
It is difficult to determine whether all these announcements were made in good faith or otherwise. We observe that the name of the Act. of the Co. is not stated on the "proof prospectus" in our possession. We record them chiefly on account of their novelty.
On the prosp. Mr. Yelland was styled "Managing Director;" Abiather P. Wall, M.D., "Medical Director;" and Messrs. Vallance and Vallance were announced as "Solicitors;" and here the "legal hist." of the enterprise commences. These last-named gentlemen, as soon as they found themselves so pub., filed a bill in Chancery against the directors, and obtained a decree prohibiting the use of their names.
The next stage was that in Aug., 1848, the Man. Director found himself at the Guildhall Police Court, having been apprehended on a warrant, charging him with obtaining various sums of money by means of false pretences: to wit, 100 from Dr. Bartlett, on the promise that he should be appointed a medical officer of this Co.; £200 from Mr. Winscomb, on the promise that he should be appointed Sec. of the Co. at £500 p.a.; 100 from Mr. Donaldson, on the promise of appointing him Chief Clerk of the Co., and £50 from another gentleman who was to be appointed Sol. of the Co. After several hearings and adjournments, the prosecutors somewhat abruptly withdrew from the charge. It was stated that Mr. Yelland had agreed to repay the money he had obtained; and so it appeared that the object of the prosecution had been accomplished. The Co., however, had received its death-blow.
By the art. of asso. Mr. Yelland was to have received various sums for preliminary expenses, and promotion money, viz. £300 in cash and £600 in fully paid shares within 28 days after first allotment; and in 6 months thereafter the further sum of £350, and a further £350 in 12 months (sec. 146). By the 103rd sec. he was appointed Man. Director at a salary of £500 p.a.
BRITISH ALMANAC.-See COMPANION TO BRITISH ALMANAC.
BRITISH AMICABLE LIFE OFFICE, founded in 1857, and in the same year its connexions were transferred to the General.
BRITISH ANNUITY CO., founded in 1824, with an authorized cap. of £3,000,000, in 60,000 shares of £50. The hist. of this Co. presents some remarkable features. Its bus. was not to sell, but to purchase annu., i.e. to make advances repayable by means of annu. Hence the requirement for such a large cap. A Deed of Sett. was prepared containing regulations for the management of the affairs of the Co. A Mr. Van Sandau, a wellknown Lond. sol., had applied for and obtained an allotment of shares. When called upon to sign the deed, he refused to do so, on the ground that it contained provisions inconsistent with the adv. and prosp., on the faith of which he had become a partner in the concern; and being, as he alleged, generally dissatisfied with the mode in which the affairs of the Co. were being carried on, he filed a bill in Chancery against the Chairman, Mr. Moore, seeking to be relieved of his shares.
In the mean time the Co. had obtained a special Act of Parl., 5 Geo. IV. cap. cliii.— An Act to enable the British Annu. Co. for the Purchasing of Annu., under certain regulations to sue and be sued in the name of the Chairman and Sec. for the time being. This Act received the Royal assent 21 June, 1824. It declared that the Co. was not incorp., or the shareholders discharged from any responsibility as individuals.
It was prob. in view of this provision of the Act that Mr. Van Sandau filed a second bill, this time against all the shareholders. The number of these had been limited by the D. of Sett. to 500, but they were actually only 300. He alleged in this bill that no time having been orig. prescribed for the duration of the partnership, it was dissolvable by notice at the pleasure of any of the partners. He had accordingly on the 30th April, 1825, sent a notice of dissolution to the Sec. and Sol. of the Co. Finally he prayed that the Co. might be dissolved and proper accounts taken.
To this bill 14 of the Directors appeared and filed separate answers, with long schedules to each; and the Court held [Van Sandau v. Moore, 1826] that the defendants could not be compelled to answer jointly, and that there was no reason in fact why the whole 300 shareholders might not answer separately. The result was that it became impossible to proceed with a suit in which the plaintiff, as a preliminary measure, might have had to pay for copies of 300 answers, each with a long schedule. The plaintiff in fact was most com
pletely and effectually caught in the trap he had set for the Co. and was obliged to abandon the suit. Mr. John Wilks, jun., son of the John Wilks of political notoriety, was the Sol. of the Co.
The Co. carried on business down to 1848, when its affairs were placed in order for winding up. Mr. James Mitchell, LL.D. was Sec. of the Co.
BRITISH APOLLO MARRIAGE INS. OFFICE, "Bolt-court, Fleet-street," founded in 1710, for securing marriage portions, etc. There appears to have been another office of the same name, situate near the Horn, Bread-street, Radcliffe, founded in the same year, and for the same class of business. Each is spoken of in our hist. of MARRIAGE INS. BRITISH Assu. Co.-This Co. was founded in 1847, under the title of the Architects, Civil Engineers, Builders, and General F. and L. Ins., Annu., and Rev. Int. Co. In 1850 its name was changed by authority of a special Act of Parl., 13 & 14 Vict. c. x.An Act to change the name of, etc., and for other purposes relating to the Co. This Act received the Royal assent 17th May, 1850; but the Co. was not to be released from the provisions of the Joint-Stock Cos. Regis. Act. We have already given some account of it under its orig. name. Its return of F. duty in 1848 was £1029. In 1851 it was £2666. About £350,000 of the cap. was subs. The F. bus. was not attended with success; and the L. bus. was small. In 1852, or early in 1853, the connexions of the Co. were trans. to the Lancashire. The acceptance of lives in impaired health was a feature of the L. department. In the F. department ins. were granted for loss occasioned by "buildings being rendered untenantable by fire."
BRITISH ASSʊ. So.—An asso. under this title was founded early in the present century. Its office was in Aldersgate-street, but its general features were rather those of a benefit so. than an ins. office.
BRITISH, AUSTRALIAN, AND GENERAL MARINE, Life, and FIRE ASSU. AND LOAN SO., founded in 1840, with an authorized cap. of £1,000,000, in 50,000 shares of £20. The prosp. says:
It is proposed, then, to unite the branches of Marine, L., and F. assu., etc., and other business usually undertaken under any of the above departments; and its object has reference to Australia as well as Gt. Brit.; an office being intended to be estab. in Sydney upon quite as important a scale as the head office of the So. in Lond., and to be governed by its separate board of directors.
With regard to the Marine department, it is only necessary to call attention to the fact that our Australian possessions are rapidly increasing in importance, and their agents are daily spreading all over the globe; large consignments are made, not to England only, but to China, the East Indies, and other parts; and a very considerable part of such exports are entirely at the risk of the merchant, owing to the excessive prems. hitherto demanded by existing cos.
The Fire assu. will be confined exclusively to Australia.
The rates of prem. charged are understood to be 5s. 6d., 7s. 6d., and 12s. 6d., which are considerably higher than the charges to which competition has reduced them in this country.
Moreover, another great and decided advantage which this Co. will have over others, will be in the investment of a portion of its surplus funds in Australian securities; and as a highly profitable and sure investment of cap., even this feature alone would recommend the shares to the public, seeing that on landed property of daily increasing value, the usual rate of int. on the best mortgage in Australia is 12 p.c., which in this country scarce obtains 4.
A portion of the shares will be reserved for allotment in Australia. . . . Pol. will be granted as low as £20.. ... A charter will be applied for as soon as the So. shall be firmly estab. . . .
This was the programme of operations laid down. We do not discover, as a matter of fact, that the co. ever did commence bus. ; although we find it stated in the prosp. :— "The arrangements being sufficiently advanced, the directors beg to announce that they propose commencing bus. on 10th March next." Mr. John Cobon was announced as Sec. BRITISH COLONIAL, BANK, AND LOAN.-This scheme, which had intentions to graft on the bus. of L. ins., was projected in 1845, but died at that stage.
BRITISH COLONIAL INS. Co., founded in 1838, and in 1842 it ceased to carry on bus. We have not been able to meet with any accurate details concerning it.
BRITISH COLONIAL AND FOREIGN LIFE Assu. Co.-This Co. was promoted in March, 1852, by Mr. William Carpenter, a literary gentleman, who wrote some pamphlets on ins. topics. In the month of May, same year, the directors regis. their withdrawal from the project. See ENGLISH AND COLONIAL.
BRITISH AND COLONIAL INDISPUTABLE.-This Co. was projected by a Manchester gentleman in 1852, but made no progress.
BRITISH AND COLONIAL LIFE AND INVESTMENT Co., projected in Lond. in 1864, with a proposed cap. of £250,000. Mr. Thomas Withcomb was the first regis. promoter. We do not discover that the enterprise made further progress.
BRITISH AND COLONIAL PROVIDENT LIFE ASSO., ANNUITY, ENDOWMENT, AND FREEHOLD INVESTMENT Co.-This Asso. was projected in 1845, but did not survive the honours of prov. regis.
BRITISH AND COLONIAL Trust and Assu. Co.-A Co. under this title was projected in Lond. in 1846. Its proposed cap. was £500,000, in 10,000 shares of £50. The advertised patron was His Royal Highness the Duke of Sussex; among the trustees were the Earl of Thanet, the Earl of Lovelace, Lord Vaux, Lord Lovat, and 5 others. The Chairman was W. Hutt, M. P., afterwards President of the Board of Trade; among the directors was Rowland Hill, and many other well-known names. The Auditor and Consulting Act. was Augustus De Morgan; while the Act. and Sec. was Alexander Jamieson, LL.D. The prosp. said:
This Co. intends, for the first time in this country, to combine with the bus. of L. assu. in all its branches, that of the Administration of Trusts. Trust cos. prevail extensively through the U.S., and have been found productive of the greatest advantages. The object is to substitute a public body for individuals in the execution of trusts... That which is a man's business is generally well and diligently done. At present the execution of a trust is not regarded as a bus., and is consequently too often performed in a slovenly and imperfect manner. . . . All these hazards and inconveniences are obviated by resting the trust in a public body.
Into the ins. department every improvement will be introduced which is suggested by equity, and has received the sanction of experience; the intention being to multiply the inducements to ins. by dispensing with restrictive conditions, or clauses of forfeiture unnecessarily severe, and by offering increased facilities in the effecting and realizing of pol. It is also proposed to extend the principle and benefits of L. assu. by affording the means of providing against other contingencies besides that of the death of the assured, by placing at his disposal a fund, which may be available on any emergency or for any purpose-such as the portioning or advancement of children-the extension of bus.-temporary sickness and the like. With this view it is intended to grant deferred annu. on strictly equitable terms, and to regard the aggregate payments, whether upon a life pol., or for the purchase of a deferred annu., as a fund standing to the credit of the pol.-holder, which may at any time be converted into a fair equivalent in some other shape, or be made available as a cash credit account for a reasonable advance from the Co.
Then the following regulations regarding foreign travel were in advance of those usual at that period:
Pol. will not necessarily be forfeited by passing beyond the seas; but such regulations will be adopted as may reconcile the protection due to the Co., with a fair consideration of the interests of the assu. The usual trips either to the adjacent islands or to the continent of Europe will not be considered as varying the ordinary risk . . . ; but if the party whose life is ins. shall depart beyond the limits so prescribed, or go from the U.K. to any country which is the theatre of war or civil tumult, or in which any pestilential disorder shall be then prevailing, the pol. will be forfeited, unless before the day of the next periodical payment, or the death of the party assured, if it should first happen, notice shall have been given to the office of such departure or visit, and the add. prem. required for such extra risk duly paid.
We do not find that this Co., with all its influential names and novel features, ever got really to work. We have been informed that a Co. of the same name was founded in 1838, and died out in 1849; but we find no trace of it.
BRITISH COMMERCIAL INS. Co., for the protection of trade, founded in 1820, with an authorized cap. of £1,000,000, in 20,000 shares of £50. The objects embraced in the orig. "proposal were: The ins. merchants, manufacturers, and tradesmen, for losses by the bankruptcy or insolvency of their debtors. Also for ins. on lives; for the sale and purchase of annu.; the receiving of investments in order to a trading cap.; the endowment of children; the redemption of mortgage; and the estab. of a widows' and orphans' fund, solely for the relief of the indigent families of those who shall have been proprietors, assurants, annuitants, or investors in the funds of the Co.
Under the head of Ins. against Losses in Trade, the prosp. said:
The first object of the Co. being to provide a remedy against the present depression of domestic trading of the country, by the revival of credit; it may be necessary to state that the calculations of the Co. have been made from positive authorities, and upon the broadest basis of inquiry. They have been made with the certainty of a fair and honourable profit to the Co., which consideration cannot fail to operate in gaining the confidence of the insurer, for it is only in the profits of the Co. that the security of the public can be maintained.
Pol. may be effected with the Co. by merchants, manufacturers, and traders, to ins. against losses in trade by the bankruptcy or insolvency of their debtors, by ann. prem. on the average amount of their running credits, or by íns. on life. The rates of ins. may be referred to in the proposals of the Co., distinguishing the several risks of credit, in common ins., hazardous, and doubly hazardous. These rates will be given under head of COMMERCIAL CREDIT INS. Deposits were required to be made by intending life insurers: 55. on £100 proposal; 10s. between 100 and up to £500; and I between £500 and £1000. If proposer declined to complete, deposit to be forfeited; if Co. declined to accept, to be returned. The distinctive feature of the L. branch was that very low rates of prem. were charged, there being no profit or bonus scale: Whole life rates, age 15, £1 9s.; 20, £1 155. ; 25, £2; 30, £2 ̊ 5s. ; 35, £2 11s. ; 40, £3; 45, £3 10s. ; 50, £4 6s. ; 60, £6 7s. 4d.; 67, £8 12s. Id.
In the Deposit department tables were given showing the amounts to be withdrawn at given periods by deposit of 2s. 6d. weekly; £2 11s. quarterly; or £100 paid down. [DEPOSIT INS.]
The Co. had a Fire branch. It returned in Gov. duty, in 1824, £2985. In the following year this branch of its bus. was trans, to the Protector F. The cap. appears then to have been reduced to £600,000, of which £90,000 was paid up.
In 1832, by 2 & 3 Wm. IV. c. xxxviii., the Co. was enabled to sue or be sued in the name of one of the Directors or Sec. Its bus. at that date appears to have been confined to life, annu., and endow. for children; and it then granted parti. life pol. Diseased lives were ins. at special rates.
In 1847 the above Act was repealed, and other provisions made, by 10 & 11 Vict. c. lxxxiv. The Co. might thereafter be sued in the name of one its Directors, or the Sec. for the time being.
In 1850 the Co. issued 371 new pol., the new prems. thereon being £6592. The claims paid amounted to £31,893. The prems. received on these same pol. had been £30,655. The profit by lapsed pol. was estimated at £13,600. The assets of the Co. were stated to amount to £249,711, exclusive of £510,000 of subs. cap.