Colonel Sckatchley. —Col. Scratchley is expected to arrive in Timaru on Thursday, when he will review the Volunteers. A Lady School Committee Member. —The Nelson'householders have elected a ladjq named Mrs. Gibbs, a member of the School Committee. The Irish Relief Fund. —Kmr.ara lias forwarded to the Lord Mayor of Dublin a first instalment of Ll5O in aid of the Irish Relief Fund. The Barley Bushel. —The Richmond (Nelson) farmers have fixed the weight of their bushel of barley at 591b5., and intend forming a company if the maltsters, etc., do not agree to their figure. A Good Investment. The annual balance sheet of the Wellington and Hutt Building Society shows a profit of L 1,900 for the last year, equal to a profit of L2 per share. Another Kerosene Accident. —The “ at anchor ” lamp of a barge at Makarau, suspended as usual from the rigging, hurst shortly after dusk on Tuesday, and the blazing liquid spread all over the deck. Two sailors from the man-of-war Sandfly extinguished the fire with difficulty after the jib of the barge was partially burnt. A Dry Rub. —ln Court on Tuesday last Mr. Branson made an application to the Bench in such a meek, appealing voice, that during the delivery of it we wondered what had come over the usually selfpossessed solicitor. It was to request that as access to the Law Library (?) had been by order denied the profession, for the future the Acts and Ordinances be laid on the table for reference during the sitting of the Court. The request was at once acceded to by that most urbane of magistrates, Mr. Guinness. Alterations in Trains. —Several important alterations are to bo made on February Ist. in the running of the trains, the most prominent one being the discontinuence of the midday passengers train except for Saturdays. All the times of departure for the other trains are altered and the express is for the futui’e to stop at Rakaia and Winslow on both down and up trips. The time-table will be published in our next issue. In the meantime we refrain from comment except to say that the withdrawal of the midday train seems to be an extraordinary proceeding, quite uncalled for, and likely to inconvenience a large section of the travelling public to a very serious extent, as it cannot be argued for 011 c moment it does not pay, since it is generally a mixed train of goods and passengers.
Pastor Chiniquy’s Visit to Ashburton. —Arrangements are being made for Pastor Ohiniquy to deliver a lecture in Ashburton on the night before he opens his campaign in Timaru. New Zealand Shipping Company.— The directors of the New Zealand Shipping Company Limited have declared an interim dividend at the rate of 10 per cent, per annum for the half-year ended 31st December, 1879, payable on the 31st instant. Reduction in Miners’ Wages. —The miners in the Coal Pit Heath mine (Grey) have got notice of a reduction of (id. per ton in the getting out price. The miners consider the present price too low, especially as regular work cannot be depended on. A Maori Lady Missionary. —lt is stated that one of Te Kooti’s wives is at Te Kopua, near Kawakawa, engaged in making converts to Te Kooti’s new religion. She is expected to visit the settlement at Waioma, and much interest is taken in her movements. A Turf Trick in the Post Office. — The postman at Otaki has been suspended in consequence of his having dated a letter enclosing an entry for Wellington races as being posted on Jan. 19, when really it was posted on Jan. 20. It is believed that it was so stamped to suit the convenience of the person entering the horse. £350 for a Life. —ln the case of Meldrum v. Proudfoot, heard at Dunedin, an action brought to recover damages by representatives of a man killed on the tramway, the Jury returned a verdict for plaintiff for L 350. The jury recommended that men only, and not boys, should be employed as conductors. The Mount Somers Railway. —We are glad to learn that Messrs. Frazer and Co. have nearly arrived at the end of their labors on their contract on the Mount Somers railway. The middle of February will see the line completed, and wc hope the Government will be alive to the necessity of calling for tenders for No. 2 section forthwith. The Natives. —The following is a telegram from Opunake, dated Saturday : The Native Minister, attended by Colonel Roberts and Major Noake, loft Hawera at 10.15 and arrived at Opunake at 2.15. The Stella has just left, after landing seventy-five Armed Constabulary and twenty tons of cargo. Major Brown is on the Waimate Plains, interviewing the people of Tito Kowaru. Criminal Assault. —At the Auckland Police Court on Tuesday Wm. Samuel Tidmarsh was charged with assaulting Harriot Shakespeare, with intent to commit a rape, and remanded. He has been tried at the Supremo Court before for a similar offence. The police have now ascertained that it was Tidmarsh who attempted a criminal assault on the Kyber Pass road about a month ago. Retrenchment.— The Ashburton municipality is not the only one in the Colony hampered for funds. At Dunedin 'the municipal credit account is now reduced to L7OOO, and the Finance Committee of the City Council recommend to that body that the idea of completing the Town Hall be abandoned, that the Works Committee be instructed to dispense with all surplus labor now employed, and that the Council abstain strictly from ordering any new works. Cheap and Nasty.— The Levels Road Board recently let the valuation of their district by tender. The new valuer was appointed at a saving of LIOO on the remuneration demanded by the former one, but the new valuation has given terrible dissatisfaction, being full of discrepancies, inaccuracies, and omissions. f J he Board ou Tuesday held a special meeting, and decided to appear before the Assessment Court with last year’s valuation rolls, and apply to have the omissions inserted, raid all the necessary alterations made whore the properties have been undervalued. The Municipal Association. The Municipal Conference sat yesterday in Christchurch and was well attended by delegates, who were present from five boroughs, while two others sent letters of sympathy. Mr. Hugo Fricdlandor presided, and the following resolution, moved by Mr. Bullock, and seconded by the M.iyor of Lyttelton was carried: “ That this meeting is of opinion that a Municipal Association bo formed to be called the Now Zealand Municipal Association, its object being to facilitate the enactment of suitable laws on nil matters having exclusive reference to Municipal Government.” It was also decided unanimously that all Municipalities in the South Island be asked to join, and that the secretary advise the boroughs represented at the Conference as i.unu as lie receives replies. Duomore.- —The Government seem to have at last satisfied their conscieiices that such a place as Dromore exists. Farmers who are likely to use that station —and the farmers about Dromore are not few, nor are their crops small—arc aware that applications, petitions, and requests have been made for a goods shod, to put them on an equal footing with farmers in more favored districts. Further, Mr. E. G. Wright, in Parliament, drew the special attention of the Minister for Public Works to the necessity of it, and now that harvest is on us, and crops arc being cut and threshed by thousands of acres, wo are delighted to see that tenders are invited by the Government for the erection of a goods shed. By the time the contract is let, and the foundations of the goods shed laid, all the grain from that part of the district will have been sold, and probably be half way on its voyage home. We appreciate the paternal care of the Government, but for the future would like it to be doled out at a more seasonable time of the year. It would 'have done more good to Ashburton if they had called for tenders for the extension of the Mount Somers railway. The Wesleyan Conference at Dunedin. —At the Wesleyan Conference on Tuesday, the Auckland and Rangiora circuits were reported as being required to make provision for receiving a married minister each. Additional ministers have been granted to Waikato, Wairoa, Kawakawa, Whangaroa and Wellington. It was decided to form the Upper Thames district into a new circuit, including Ohiuemuri, Katikati, Waihou, and Piako. In the afternoon session, the statistics were read by the Secretary, showing the number of members to be 3737, being an increaso for the year of 122. The number of members on trial is 202 ; and the number of ministers is 71, being an increase of six. The lay representatives from several circuits in the colony were present for the first time that morning as follows:—From Auckland, Messrs. F. R. White and R. Wykes ; New Plymouth, J. George ; Wellington, W. Lustin and W. Moxhain ; Christchurch, J. Shierlaw ; Springstou, H. W. Peryman ; Rangiora, C. Howard ; Timaru, B. Holgate ; Waimato, J. Manchester ; Dunedin Trinity Church, G. Hindle and (Mornington) P. M‘Leau ; Port Chalmers, J. Lane ; Balclutha, W. Hope ; Roxburgh, H. Bloxliam ; Invercargill, L. Cheync ; Treasurer of Contingent Fund, W. Harris (Christchurch). The Revs. A. Reid (Christchurch), W. Keall (Ashburton) and T. Fee (Waimate) also took their scats. The income for the Home and Church Exi elision Fund was as follows ; —Towards liquidation of debt, L 593 6s. 6d. ; by way of ordinary income, LSBB 13s. 10d. The income was found to be considerably less than the claims upon the fund, and consequently the votes had to be reduced. The evening session was occupied with the consideration of estimated income and expenditure for the next 12 months.
The Waste Lands.— Notwithstanding the outcry made by the Thames settlers for waste lands, at a sale at Auckland on Tuesday of Government waste lands, there was not only no competition, but not a single Thames settler appeared as a purchaser. The small suburban lots in the Te Aroha block were specially surveyed so as to enable working men to acquire a small freehold, but they did not seek to avail themselves of the privilege. A considerable number of sections in the town of Tauranga, the whole of those in the town of Te Awamutn, and the greater portion of those in the town of Newcastle (Ngaruawahia), offered for sale were disposed of. Only a few of the Te Aroha suburban lots found purchasers, and none of the rural lots. Farms varying from 130 acres to 48 acres, pub up at L2 an acre, did not elicit a bid, although the land bordered on the river and was of good quality. A Legal Intruder. —At the reaper and binder contest yesterday one of the exponents of “ equity and good conscience ” made his appearance on the convincing ground. There was no particular objection to his appearing there by himself, but when he was accompanied by a steed with prominent ribs and a ewe neck, lie naturally drew the attention of the marshals of the several competing machines to his unexpected intrusion. After several expeditions in various parts of the paddock he met one of the officials, who is as well known for his shortness of temper as the limb of the law is for his proficiency in discovering nonsuit points, and the equestrian was ordered off the ground with very short notice. He appeared to consider that as “an officer of the Supreme Court ” he had a locus standi anywhere he liked to wander. A slight “diversion” ensued during which the nonsuit man’s horse played up and the rider performed sonic equestrian exercises quite unknown to any of Chiarini’s ablest performers, one being a graceful effort to sit on the animal’s ears. The marshal eventually got him out of the way of the knives of the Osborne machine, and Don Quixote and llosinante subsequently fell into the hands of our old friend Joseph Hunt, who gave him prompt notice to quit, and he finally left the ground, and was last seen travelling as fast as the framework would carry him to look up the authorities on assault, with a view to future iircocedings. A Tribute to Mr. Gladstone. —The Earl of Rosebery, presiding at' Mr Gladstone’s mass meeting in Edinburgh, paid the following tribute to the venerable leader of the Liberal party in Britain : “Full of years and honors—(hear, hear) — followed in his career by his country with a strange mixture of tenderness and pride, at an age when body and mind alike invite repose, an illustrious statesman has come down to fight one supreme battle in the cause of freedom. (Cheers.) He has passed through one long series of wellordered triumphs from his home in Wales to the metropolis in Scotland. There has been no village too small to afford a crowd to meet him ; there has been no cottager so humble that he could not find a light to put in his window as he passed; mothers have brought their babies to lisp and hurrah ; old men have crept forth from their homes to sec him before they died. (Cheers.) These have been no prepared ebullitions of sympathy—(hear, bear) —these have been no calculated demonstrations. The heart of the nation has been touched. (Cheers.) And, gentlemen, wo to-day have nothing to do with the special business which has brought Mr. Gladstone down to Scotland. It is not an ilectoral meeting. We are here to-day, electors and non-electors, Liberals from every part of the United Kingdom—(cheers)—one with another come to pay respect to the intellect which has inspired our Liberalism, and to the leader who has led our parry to victory. (Cheers.) On the colors of 1868, which were borne to triumph, his name is inscribed ; and though those colors are tattered now, they are none the less his colors for all that. (Hear, hoar.) Others may enjoy the place—others do enjoy the place and the power which he held so worthily then ; but there is one place and one power which, as none can give him, none can take from him—that is the power of great intellect—(cheers) —moved by the highest virtue and purest patriotism—(cheers) —and the place is the place in the hearts of his fellow-countrymen. (Loud cheers.) ” The Sale of a Living.— The Archbishop of York told the following story at the York Diocesan Conference :—What happened in this diocese in one case was tins— A living was bought and the presentation was sent down to him, with a great number of papers. A.mongst the rest was a letter winch was opened like the rest, having apparently been sent with them for his (the Archbishop’s) secretary to read. It was a very curious letter. It said—- “ Dear Dick, —I have bought the living and paid for it. You go as quickly as possible and get instituted, before the thing is much talked about ; and there is an end of it.’’—(Laughter.) Ho directed the secretary to ask an explanation of this very short lobtei - . There was a pause of three weeks, and at the end of it a solicitor wrote back to beg that he might be furnished with the letter. In these latitudes they did not part with original documents (laughter) and they told him so. A fortnight elapsed, and the same solicitor wrote for a copy of the letter, which, they rejoined, after the explanations would be given him. It was by a pure accident that this matter was found out, and if the gentleman had burnt the letter instead of sending it, they would have known nothing about the plan. He prevented the transaction as a matter of coarse. The waiter in the York refresh-ment-room, two days before the man was to be instituted, was the witness of that deed ; and between the glasses of sherry the living was to be bought, and before the end of the week the man was to bo in it. That was the kind of action that brought scandal on the Church. (Applause.) ■
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