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Technical Education in New Zealand.
From the Scientific American.
The ‘‘ Scientific American ” has been asked to solicit the kind offices of American inventors, manufacturers, and other friends of industrial education on behalf of a worthy institution in far away New Zealand.
To provide “ all classes and denominations ” of the New Zealand population with facilities for pursuing a regular and liberal course of education, Canterbury College has been established at Christchurch, the principal town of the province of Canterbury, and is now in good working condition. In connection with this College there has been founded a scientific musuem, housed in a handsome stone building, erected at a cost of upward of lOOjOOOdols , and comprising a valuable collection of specimens of natural history, and type collections of minerals and fossils. An effort is being made to establish hi this museum a department of technical science, for which contributions of models of machinery, implements, and the like are now solicited. The reception of such contributions, and their shipment to New Zealand (freight charges to be paid there), will bo undertaken by the publishers of this paper. So much for the message committed to us. A word or trvo with respect to the reasons why the request should be cheerfully .and abundantly met. New Zealand is one of the most worthy and promising of the younger members of the Greater Britain made up of all the English speaking countries of the globe. As the youngest, bo, among the rising nations allied to us by blood, and bound to us by rapidly strengthening commercial ties, New Zealand is in every way deserving of all the educational assistance we can give her ; and it can be safely promised that her people will be duly grateful for anything wo may do in this way.
There is a lower (possibly to some a more cogent) reason why this request should be granted ; it will pay commercially. Already New Zealand is one of the most inviting of foreign markets for American manufactured products ; and there is no way by which American manufacturers can place their machines, implements, and other wares more effectively before the New Zealanders than by having them thus favorably placed on perpetual exhibition at tho chief centre of intelligence in the colony. It is not yet forty years since the first white settlors landed in New Zealand, and already the popnlation numbers something like half a million of wide awake, active, and intelligent English people. The islands have an area of over 100,000 square miles ; a trifle less than that of Great Britain and Ireland, and something more than twice tnat of the State of New York. About 12,000,000 acres are fit for agriculture ; 50,000,000 acres are suitable for pasturage ; 20,000,000 are forest lands. The climate is much like that of England, but more equable. There is more sunshine and a smaller range of temperature. The annual mean for tho North Island is 57degs.,' that of the South Island is 52degs. The mean annual tefftperature of London and New York is 51degs. The country is rich in minerals, and its resources are being developed rapidly. In 1870 the foreign commerce of New Zealand was equal to that of Norway. It was more than that of any of the Souch American states except Brazil ; more than that of any African states except Egypt and Algeria ; greater than that of Japan; and was exceeded in Asia only by China, Java, and the Straits Settlements. It was exceeded in Australasia only by Victoria and New South Wales. In 1875 its trade with the United States exceeded 10,000,000c1015. In 1870 the colony had GOO miles of railway, and in 1878 something like 1000 miles. In 1875 there were in operation over 3000 miles of telegraph lines, with a mileage of telegraph wire exceeding 7000 miles. These are the latest statistics at hand ; and the rate of progress is such that they must be largely increased to bring ibom up to the probable figures required to indicate the present condition of the colony. It is to a country possessing such notable capacities for commercial developments, and offering so many inducements for the cultivation of friendly relations, that the asked for models and specimens of machinery and industrial appliances are to go, to be placed on view, as already said, under the most favorable conditions possible. in very many instances doubtless the most efficient as well as most economical representation to send will be a perfect machine or implement of regular make. The photographs of the museum rooms—which may be seen at this office by any one who is interested —show an abundance of space for the proper display of contributions ; and as the museum is a place of popular resort, not only for tho people of Christchurch, but for all visitors to that capital, a more attractive mode of exhibiting matters suitable for the markets of the colony could not be devised. We sincerely i rust that our energetic, generous, and far-seeing manufacturers will take the matter in hand earnestly, and that while Canterbury College is enriched by specimens of high educational value, the industries of the United States will have in them a full and honorable presentation before the students of the institution and the public at large. It may properly be suggested here that contributors should affix to each specimen a special tablet bearing the inscription—- “ Presented to the Technological Collection of Canterbury College Museum, Christchurch, New Zealand, by, etc., etc.,” giving the donor’s name .and post office addreas.
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