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CHISPA’S LETTER., Ashburton Guardian, Volume I, Issue 36, 18 December 1879
(From the Ashhntton Herald, December 13) “I am not yet so bald that you can see my brains. ” —Lo.vgkellow. The Resident Magistrate’s Court news is wbat Mrs. Chispa generally looks for of an evening, and wo usually discuss the troubles of our neighbors from the columns of the Herald after retiring to our virtuous couch. As your reports are drawn up in a style well calculated to act as a sleeping draught, Mrs. C. generally commences a basso profundo by the time 1 have got to the end of your first column of locals. But for a change she has been very wakeful this last week, and I have a sore throat through having to read and expound to her the various circumstances connected with Ford v. Blueot, Orr and Co. v. Ford, Montgomery and Co. v. Ford, and Bluett v. Ford. I got on very well in explaining Ford v. Bluett, but when it came to the rust of the business there was a doubt in my own mind as to how the thing got mixed up, and I wont into a long explanation as to the various kinds of legal process, and used some of Mr. O’Reilly’s Latin, in the hope that she would do what I did in listening to the cases—go to sleep. But she didn’t, and as a paragraph had appeared in your paper about the fords in the river being in bad order this week, the wife of my bosom w.mld have it that this poor man Find was connected with the river somehow, and £ told her that Ford sued Bluett for LSO and got judgment, and Ford ow'ed Orr LSO and Orr sued him and didn’t get judgment at first, but did afterwards ; and then Bluett sued Ford back for the LSO, and she gave lue snore and saiu “You had better Blew it, Or go to sleep, and don't go crossing no more Fords when the river is high.” Well you know this kind of thing is discouraging, when the head of a family' goes in for elocution, so I am going to gi"u up reading the Herald in bed for the future, unless you can find something which will come within the scope of my family’s understanding. This business of Ford’s has been a good line for the lawyers. Mr. Bluett, the New Zealand counterpart of the Tichborne claimant, had to part with LSO and costs. It was a hard case, as he received nothing for it, but still it must be looked upon as being so much foreign capital coining into the district. But Ford didn’t get it. Oil no ! There was a rush for that LSO. One of the legal fraternity held it for 48 hoiii-s and nearly wore the cheque out feeling if it was safe during that brief period, and, he had no sleep over it for two nights ; and then he gave it to the Clerk of the Court to impound it ; and an hour or so before, Mr. Ford quietly gave his previous legal adviser the slip aid filed his schedule with a lawyer who was a stranger to the case altogether. The creditors got wind of the business and made a rush to the Court to put their warrants in execution against this LSO cheque ; and the cleverest of the crowd got euchred, for he had sent the bailiff away 011 a ten mile trip an hour previously to seize a horse and cart which didn’t belong to to the bankrupt, and creditor No. 2 stepped in with his warrant and nailed the cash.
Five shillings, and costs divided. Such is valuation by his Worship of damages sustained by a breach of contract, a brutal assault, and a damaged reputation. This case against the managers of racing matters took a lot of fighting both out of Conn; and in Court, and when the plaintiff imported legal talent from Christchurch, we all looked forward to the cock of the Ashburton legal roost having liis wings clipped. Mr. Branson was, however, equal to the occasion, except in one part of the case, which by the way occupied the Court nearly six hours. The local legal Jupiter, gave the benefit of his legal knowledge to the Bench in a speech of about an hour and a half’s duration, he did it to help his case for one thing, but I think the main point he had in view was to keep the Christchurch solicitor so long in Court that he was bound to lose the express train to Christchurch. Mr. Joyce was either so much flabbergasted by Mr, Branson’s arguments, or he was so vexed at not getting home that night that his
reply was simply an appeal to the Bench for mercy ; and the solicitor for the racing men looked more disappointed than I ever saw him, as he had nothing to reply to. I hear the defendants in the case will have to appear before Mr. Guinness again in an ocher case arising out of the same transaction.
“A prophet is not without honor save in his own country.” So wo arc told by an ancient and reliable authority, and I find that the old proverb is applicable even here. Our local spouter Mr. Joseph Ivess, finding his little game played out in Ashburton, has had to seek refuge in Ohertsey, of all places in the county, to air his well known platitudes, but he missed his favorite admirers there —the larrikins and butcher boys. I should recommend him to take a fresh departure, and try Hindhope for his next exposition of Greyism. Chispa.
The Impeachment of the Prime’Minis* ter, the Minister of Lands, and Messrs. Saunders and Moorehouse, M.H.R.'s.
A petition, said to be signed by 500 people, has been presented to Parliament. It is a most extraordinary indictment, and contains “articles of impeachment against William Sefton Moorehouse, John Hall, William Rolleston, and Alfred Saunders, being members of the House of Representatives of New Zealand.” The first article, “inter alia,” says —“Yet it happened that the said Governor Gore Brown—being corruptly instigated thereto by one Sefton Moorehouse, as member of the Canterbury Provincial Council and Superintendant of Canterbury; also by one John Hall, as a runholder and member of the aforesaid Provincial Council—did break the Royal Instructions and the Constitution Act for the personal and indirect profit of the said instigators in the following manner, vie ; Without authority of Parliament they did procure an advertisment called ‘ Waste Lands Regulations,’ to be brought into force by insertion in the Gazette on the 9th. February, 1856, whereby they and their friendsand relatives, directly and indirectly, were enabled to appropriate without payment the waste lands of the Crown, to sell the said lands without' a law passed in Parliament, and in fiat violation of Her Majesty Queen Victoria’s Royal Instruction, No. 5. Article No. 2 ‘inter alia’ declares that William Rolleston, as Superintendant of Canterbury, did allow the trustees of certain foreign land jobbing and moneylending companies to be appointed on the Waste Lands Board, and, did allow them to manipulate the land laws to the profit of their own companies, and of their friends more particularly, in a system of land jd under known as ‘ gridironing,’ and that William Rolleston did all this in full and guilty knowledge, and in breach of his oath to God, Crown and country.” Article No. 3, “ inter alia,” declares that “ one, Alfred Saunders, as Superintendant of Nelson Province, did wilfully and corruptly concur in and make no efforts to disturb the wrongful possession of hundreds of thousands of acres of free and sacred soil, the heritage of his brothers, the common people of New Zealand/ which illegal possession to the full and guilty knowledge of the said Alfred Saunders, had corruptly obtained in flat violatiou of the Royal Instructions. ” ■ We pass on to Article No. 6, which “ inter alia ” declares :—“ Whereas the passing of most illegal ordinances was procured in the Provincial Council by runholders and their mortgagers, notably John Hall and Isaac Thomas Cookson, his mortgager, voting upon questions in which they had direct interest, and were signed,corruptly and wickedly by William Sefton Moorhouse lie being interested , for his two brothers, Benjamin Moorhouse and Thomas C Moorhouse, and also his brother-in-law John Studholme. ” Article No. 7 is as follows :—“Therefore being moved by these six articles, we, your humble petitioners, do ever pray that you will take these facts into full consideration. That you will specially remember the similar, but not so wicked, case of Michael De La Bole, Earl of Suffolk, Lord High Chancellor, who, for being too greedy in buying land, was impeached, degraded, forfeited, and punished by our ever glorious fathers before the corruption of Parliament, by the 40s franchiae ot the Sixth Henry, 1429, and by the .niock ‘ Reformation ’ which disgraces England and Ireland to this day. That you will also bear in mind clause 6 of our Act of Settlement, 1700 12 and 13 William, the third cap. 2, whereby no person having profit under the Crown can be a Parliament man, and under winch clause the aforesaid William Sefton Moorhouse, John Hall, William Rolleston, and Alfred Saunders, have committed treason against God, Crown and Country in procuring a profit to themselves or to their friends and to their relatives in flat defiance of solemn oath or in allowing' these things or some of them to be wrongfully done. That you will also notice clause 8 of the Act of Settlement, which shuts out all power of the Crown, or of the Governor, or of the Legislative Council, to interfere with or to ple4d pardon—a pardon to an impeachment by the' ‘Commons of New Zealand, and that you are a free Parliament under the said Act of Settlement. That you will guard sac ed our Common Law Right, “ that no man may justify himself of his wrong, which right has been trampled under foot by the said W. S. Moorhouse, John Hall, W. Rolleston, and Alfred Saunders. That you carefully weigh and examine the law, and take such action both for us and for our dear children, that the injustice done to us may be righted as speedily as possible, consistent with good order; also that our property may be restored. That if you do find the aforesaid instigators, and Parliament men guilty of these offences, you will forfeit them, and degrade them, and forbid them or their seed to touch our free and sacred soil of New Zealand for ever. ”
CHISPA’S LETTER., Ashburton Guardian, Volume I, Issue 36, 18 December 1879
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