A Matrimonial Hoax.
Observer, Rōrahi XV, Putanga 796, 31 Poutūterangi 1894, Page 2
A Matrimonial Hoax.
This is a hollow world, as Bunthorne remarked long ago. In a recent isaue I published an advertisement, clipped from a Wellington paper. It ran :
A YOTJNG LADY, good-looking, aged 20, 1 and with an income of £100 annually, just arrived from England, wishes to correspond with a, young man, -with a view to matrimony* Please enclose photo and address to Miss Fitz-i roy, General Post Office, Wellington.
My only comment on this was: 'What a nibble ! A pretty girl as partner for life and £100 a year. Sounds genuine, too. And it wasn't genuine at all, but a heartless hoax! Oh, there can be no doubt about it; I have a confession in writing lying before me as I pen these lines. A young lady noticing the reproduction of this attractive thing in ads. in the Obseeveb, has written up to tell me all about it. Well, open confession is good for the soul. But a revelation of this sort is really enough to- shake one'B faith m womankind.
This deceitful young person -I say deceitful beoause I strongly suspect her of being particeps criminis- explains that ' where she works are four girls, all on for fun, you may be sure.' I haven't the faintest doubt of it. Well, this mischievous quartette, it seems, concocted the ad. (and very well the minxes did it, it must be confessed) and caused it to be inserted m the columns of the staid and sober Post. The fair conspirators received 27 applications for the hand and heart (and £100 a year) of ' Miss Fitzroy,' and seven of the applicants enclosed photos ! « I send you » says my correspondent, « some of the letters and very genuine ones they evidently are, some from very swell people indeed I I suppose the money did it because a pretty girl can get a husband here without paying £100 a year for him.' Well, that sounds reasonable enough, when you come to think of it. But does my correspondent mean me to infer that pretty girls are so scarce in the Empire City that the demand exceeds the supplv 9 I hope not. ' o * ,
There is ore thing that greatly puzzlea me m connection with thia hoax. The Beven photos (which I have seen) fully confirm what my correspondent says about 'swell people.' I know my Wellington well, and I recognise the features of more than one of the amorous seven. Three or four of them are undoubtedly what my correspondent calls 'toffs,' 'swagger' young men in good posmons whose accompanying letters (which I have also seen) show them to have been very much in earnest when they indited these melting epistles. Well I suppose even a • toff ' is not inclined to turn up his nose at £100 a year, although, ]Udgmg by the appearance of some of the eager seven that sum wouldn't keep them in cigarettes. On some future occasion I may print a few ' elegant extracts ' from tne twenty-Beven letters received by those wicked girls, and throw in a few of the photos, reproduoing same by the Obskbveb patent process which will bring out the features as large as life and as plain aa P" Dt - What a sensation a column or two of that sort of thing would create in Wellington upper? crust circles 1