The “Guardian.” —To-day our readers receive the “ Guardian” in the form wc promised the paper would assume as soon as suitable machinery for working it could be procured. The necessary machinery, after unavoidable delay, has at last arrived, the printing premises have been extended by the erection of an enginehouse, and the intake of another room in the block of buildings in which the “ Guardian” is printed, so that we are now in a position to fulfil our promise_of giving to our readers a sheet the same size as the Christchurch “Press.” The new shape is handier for the reader than the one we were reluctantly compelled to assume at the outset, and tho awkward inside sheet has been dispensed with. The new machine is a super-royal Wharfcdale, by Dawson and Sons, of Otley, and the appearance of our pages this morning, and the fine clean print they display, will at a glance show the improvement its introduction has effected. Anew “Otto” gas engine is being erected in the enginehouse just built for the proprietors by Mr. M'Laren, builder, and early next week it will supply driving power to all the printing machinery in the office. As scon as all the alterations on the establishment are complete and the engine in working order, the machinist, Mr. Berry, will bo happy to show the machine at work to any visitors who may so desire. Bridge over Taylor’s Stream. —With the bi'idge over Taylor’s Stream, near Morgan’s Hotel, the contractor, Mr. Butt, is making good progress under the disadvantageous circumstances of the river bed, driving through which is exceedingly difficult. He has driven up to now 33 piles, and only fifteen remain to be driven. On the north end of the contract a commencement has been made with the superstructure, and already a considerable advancement has been made with it. Owing to the roughness of the river bed, and the size of the boulders, pile driving is exceedingly difficult, and nor more than a sixteenth of an inch is gained per stroke.
Aspirants for Fame. —There will be an appearance or two before the R.M. this morning in consequence of a case or two of too much whiskey, and one in which His Worship will be called upon to decide on the merits of two combatants who “had it out” yesterday afternoon near the sale yards,
The Mayor. —ln the “ Gazette ” of 24th ult., the name of Mr. Hugo Friedlander, Mayor of Ashburton, appears a,s a Justice of the Peace under the Municipal Corporations Act. The Telegraph Office. —lt is notified that in consequence of the strike amongst the telegraph operators, and till arrangements can be made to overtake the wox-k, the Ashburton office will close at 5 p.m. and open again at 7 p.m'. until 8 p.m. for the reception of telegrams.
Mount Somers Road Board Election. —At the nomination yesterday of candidates for the three wards in the Mount Somers Road district, Messrs. Duncan Cameron, and W. C. Walker were the only nominees for wards 1 and 5, and these gentlemen were declared elected by the returning officer, Mr. J. C. Bell. For ward 2, Messrs. Chapman, Peaohe, and Tisch were nominated, and a poll will be taken as betweenthemon Tuesday next at Alford Forest schoolroom, between the hours of 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. Strike of Telegraph Operators.— Yesterday the telegraphic system of the colony was somewhat thrown out of gear by a strike of the operators, about 100 of whom ceased work. The dissatisfaction is with the conduct of Government in stopping all overtime payments, and requiring the men to remain on duty all or any hours, as the service may require, without any remuneration for the extra time. In towns where there are morning papers, with special wires at work, the duties are especially arduous and the hours very long. The action of the authorities in requiring the men to stay on duty far into the morning for no more pay tlxan they receive for an ordinary day’s work is as hard a piece of colonial cheek as one would meet with any where, and though we are not admirers of strikes under any circumstances, we fancy the present is one that does not require much justification. As a result of the strike a large number of telegrams for the evening papers could not be forwarded, and much delay of ordinary work took place. Mount Somers Sports. —Our correspondent at Mount Somers writes that on New Year’s Day there was an excellent gathering of “ all nations ” on the ground where the sports wore held, and a full programme was fought through item by item, each being pluckily contested. The whole affair was carried through in perfect harmony and good will, and no difference either in religion or caste was manifested. [The prize list is not enclosed in our correspondent’s parcel.]
Timaru Caledonian Society. Mr. George Kidd, blacksmith, Ashburton, took first prize of £5 for Highland costume at the Timaru Caledonian Society’s sports on Thursday, and third for Highland reals.
Amateur Entertainment. —The entertainment given by the Temperance Dra r matic Club on Thursday was very poorly attended, by an audience, in the gallery principally, rowdy in the extreme. The programme was as well pex-formed as on the°occasion of the first entertainment by the Club, but the chilling effect of a poor house was painfully apparent on the spix-its, both of actors and vocalists. Amongst the latter the most successful were the gentleman who sang “In my dreams,” and the young lady who sang “We gathered shells.” The grand transformation scene was a great success, and was well appx-eciated, as it was oxx its first production. The scenery throughout the dramatic pieces was much admired and applauded. The artist is Mr. C. Bourke.
The Timaru Boil Over.— On Thursday the town of Timaru wore a gala aspect, and everybody seemed to be holding high holiday. A stranger visiting the place would never for a moment have thought that at one time a fierce Irish faction fight was expected to come off on New Year’s Day. Still, for some days in the early part of the week such was looked for, and the occasion likely to call it forth was a proposed procession by the Ox-angemon. In x-esponse, howevex-, to the wishes of the citizens who did not desire to have the annual holidays spoiled by a street brawl, the Orangemen postponed their procession, and as a consequence all went as merry as a marriage bell. Notwithstanding, the police mustered in large numbers as a precautionary measure, 300 special constables paraded, badged and truncheoned, and-the volunteers of the town and district were'under aims, as well as the Fii’e Brigade and Fife Police. All, however, passed off quietly, and the utmost good feeling and good humor prevailed.
Parish of South Rakaia. —A meeting of the Vestry of the above parish was held at Rakaia on Wednesday afternoon. Present—the Rev. W. H. Elton, Incumbent, Chairman ; Messrs. O. V Hardy, Churchwarden ; C. N. Mackie, F. B. Passmore, and W. Cox. The minutes of the former meeting were read and confirmed. The Churchwardens’ statement of accounts for the quarter was read and discussed. A letter was read from Mr. C. S. Mackie, complaining that BarrhiU Church had been deprived of one of its ordinary services. It was resolved to let the matter stand over for the present. It was resolved that a special meeting of the Vestry be held in about a month to consider whether the church at Sherwood shall be taken over by the parish or nut. The rev. Chairman informed the vestry that Messrs. J. Grigg and John Mann had each presented the parish with a town allotment at Methvcn.
The Old Men’s Home.— Tho Ashburton Home Committee report that they have accepted the following tenders for supplies for the year ending Dec. 31, 1880 : Rations and extras, Orr and Co. ; medical comforts and fuel, Friedlaudcr Bros.; interments, T. A. Gates,
Perils by Land and Sea.— A correspondent writes to say that “ three cleanly individuals,” resident in Ashburton, essayed a bath yesterday in the waler-hole at the other side of the bridge. In making their way thither they were accosted by a person in language anything but parliamentary. The correspondent asserts that the bathers walked through a public reserve or road, which has been enclosed and planted as a vegetable garden by the person referred to. We are not “an fait in the exact locality, and cannot »ay whether the ground in question is public or private property, but certainly there is no need for the use of such language over the matter as that quoted by the writer as having been hurled at the bathers. A Philosophic Fiend. —“ I should like to sell you a gimlet,” said a carewornlooking man as he walked into an office the other day. “We have no use for one,” replied the cashier. “But you should always look into the misty future,” went on the fiend demurely; “next winter you will have to make holes in your boot heels, so you can get your skates on.” “I use club skates—no straps required.” “You may want to screw jjsome boards together some time. The old-fashioned method of driving the screws in with a hammer is pernicious, as it deteriorates the tenacity of the fangs of the screw, as it were.” “ Nothing to day, sir.” “This gimlet acts as a corkscrew.” “I don’t want it.” “It also may bo used as a tack hammer, a cigarholder, and a tooth brush.” I don’t want it.” “It lias an eraser, a pen, an inkstand, a table for computing compound interest, and a lunch-box attachment.” “I can’t help it, I don’t want it. ” “I know you don’t. You’re one of those men that don’t buy a gimlet unless it has a restaurant and a trip through Europe, and an Italian opera company attached. You’re the kind of a man who wouldn’t live near an electric light to save a gas bill.” And the pedler walked out with his mental plumage on the perpendicular. —New York Star.
Sunday School Treat. —Yesterday the Presbyterian Sunday scholars from Wakanui, Waterton, and Ashburton, enjoyed a treat in the Manse grounds through the kindness of the Rev. Mr. Beattie, his good lady, and the several teachers. The children assembled at the manse at eleven o’clock, and an ample lunch having been served on the sward, games, races for prizes, and other enjoyments were engaged in by tbe children, who spent the day right jollily. The weather being “ Queen’s weather,” the meeting could not fail to be pleasant, and the pleasure was enhanced by the presence of the Brass Band under Mr. Savage, who kindly lent their services for the occasion. Themembers of thebaud also greatly aided the teachers by giving practicalhelpinthe conduct of races,games, &c. Mr. Steele’s donkey “ Nelly” carried many juvenile passengers round the grounds in the course of the day, and was perhaps as popular an agent in the day’s pleasure as any. Rev. Mr. Beattie and his lady, as well as several ladies of the congregation, were very energetic and painstaking in caring for the children’s comfort, and we were glad to observe that the little one’s highly appreciated the interest taken in them. A large number of children were present from the country districts, with their parents and friends. Mount Somers Road Board. —A meeting of the Board was held on Monday, 29th December, 1879. Present —Messrs. W. C. Walker (Chairman), J. E. Taylor, Duncan Cameron, and W. S. Peter. The. overseer made his report for the month, which was considered. The clerk was instructed to invite tenders from- persons competent to conduct the duties of Mount Somer Pound. Tenders to be sent in not later than noon of Bth January, 1880. He was also instructed to write to the Commissioner of Reserves asking him to recommend to Government to vest all gravel reserves in the Board. The Board agreed to buy from Messrs. Gould and Cameron land for a road through sections 20589. 1530, and 23724, at the rate of LI per chain. The clerk was instructed to advertise that the Board proposed to stop the road from the south-east corner of section 23518 to south-east corner of section 19975, and to take in exchange therefor a road from the aforesaid south-east corner of section 23518 to the south-east corner of section 24989, joining Government road at south-east corner of section 25614. Accounts were then passed and the Board adjourned.
The War in South America. The “Panama Star and Herald” of Oct. 7th publishes intelligence from Lima to Sept. 24th, stating that the Peruvian corvette Union arrived at Callao on Sept. 20th, after a long and fruitless voyage to the Straits of Magellan. The commander miscalculated in expecting the arrival af Punta Arenas of the vessel Gleuelg with war material from Europe for the Chilian Government, and the vessel so eagerly watched for, reached its destination in safety. On hearing this intelligence at Punta Arenas the commander of the Union decided-to: return to Arica. Only a few days after his departure from the Straits another vessel, the _ Genoese, laden with arms and ammunition for the Chilian Government, arrived, and finding no obstacle in the way, proceeded on hexvoyage to Valparaiso, falling in afterwards with the Loa and Amazonos, which had bee i despatched for her protection. How it Cuts.— The argument that the Government by a property tax are legislating in favor of large land-owners seems to us an absurd one (remarks the “Otago Daily Times). The large landowners will have to pay double the x-ate imposed by the late Government on their laxxd, and to pay on improvements as well. The Piako Swamp Company, fiv instance, will, we imagine, have to pay fully ful ltimes as much as they would under the Land Tax Act, and the only consolation such large proprietors will have is /that others who escaped before will now_have to contribute.
Cabul.— The writer of “ Zigzag Papers’ in the Sydney “Echo” says:—“ In the face of the interest which has recently centred in the ill-fated city of Oabool or Cabul, it may interest the general reader to know that the first mention of the word occurs in Sacred Writ. It occurs in 1 Kings, ix., 13, and was applied to the twenty cities which wex-e givexx by Solomon to King Hiram, in retunx for his services in supplying timber and other materials used in the construction of the temple. Hiram was not pleased with his present, and in disgust called the place Cabul. In Hebrew the word has no meaning ; but all through the East the connections associated with the word have meant ‘disgusting.’ Strange that the name has had an evil meaning. To this day the term ‘ Cabolee,’ in the East, is always employed in the sense of detx-ac-tion or depreciation.”
Vxciokian Parsons. —At a station near Bundaberg, not far from Gympie, four clergymen happened to meet By pure accident, and as is customary in the bush, were hospitably received by the wife of the owner, who was absent from homo on business. Before retiring for the evening it was suggested that prayers should to read, and then it transpired that not one of the reverend travellers had a prayerbook with him. After an excellent extempore petition, heartily joined in, the hostess placed some unopened bottles of spirits upon the table, apologising for being without a corkscrew in the house. Each of the four parsons simultaneously produced his knife, and, to the amusement of all, each knife had as part of its constitution an efficient corkscrew. This story is told by one of the four.
The Czar. —With respect to the remoured visit of the Emperor Alexander to the Berlin Court, the semi-official “ Norddeutsiho Allgemeina Zeitung,” in a letter from St. Petersburg, publishes the following intelligence:—“According to very definite assurances I have received here (in St. Petersburg), our monarch intends to remain dining a considerable portion of tho month of November still in Livadia. His Majesty contemplates then paying a visit !o tho Empress at Cannes, in“ the South of France, and thence returning hither (to St. Petersburg) at the beginning <>f December. On Dec. 8, according to the traditional usage, the festival of the Order of St. George is to be celebrated as in former years in the Imperial Winter Palace. Whether the Emperor Alexander, on Ins journey to or from Cannes, will take the route through Berlin is not yet known in this city. The story which has appeared in some organs of the Press, to the effect that on our sovereign calling at Berlin the Emperor of A ustria and the King of Italy would likewise rae.et him there, is declared in St. Petersburg to he a perfect myth.”
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