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Erratum. —In our last issue the report oJfe^ve 1 Mount Hutt Read Board hieeting bPJgm heading “ Mijunt Somers Road,’’ |«H||feographical inadvertence. HHBMBRshbusAon Riding. —An adMMBIWpfc of the County Council in ™ot|Pfralumn is of special interest, to tho'ratepayers residing between the 'branches of the Ashburton river, who hakjg to pay the special rate recently levpd by the County Council. Au ctio n aa r s Edmiston Bros, and Gundry (p'er Mr. Bullock)' held a sale at Auchindrane, Hinds, on, Thursday. The land was submitted, bu,t the biddings only reached to L 3 ss. per acre, and at that price the land was Withdrawn, and the proprietor, Mr. Gibson, bought in the bulk of the stock and implements. C.Y.C.—Lieutenant J. S. Bruce has received res mental orders from headquarters to the effect that the Ashburton and Temuka contingents will be embarked at Ashburton, with their horses, at 9 a.m. on Wednesday, the 24th inst., for the Easter Review. Also the gratifying order that Trooper Scott has been promoted to the rank of sergeant, an honor Ire richly deserves. Traction Engine. —About 7 o’clock on Thursday, Mr. Henry Moffat's traction engine, with treshing machine and all appurtenances, travelled through the township, on their way to the Hinds. The engine came along the Wakanui road down East street, and was the subject of no little curiosity. It made just sufficient noise to attract attention, but it worked very smoothly, and travelled along the road at a moderate speed. An Old Hand. — At the R.M. Court yesterday, Mr; Guinness had to administer fatherly advice and judicial correction to John Cunningham, who long ago made his first bow of submission to the law of the land for having been drunk and disorderly. On this occasion John told the old, old story of having come to town on business, and in the intervals between business devoted too much attention to beer—the disproportionate attention being too much for his head and his feet. Leniency, his Worship said, was lost on John, and bacchanalian was sent to Lyttelton gaol for a three months’ penance. The Methven Line. —As an indication of the future of the Rakaia and Alford Forest Railway, we may state that ;$t ;the present time every station is blocked up with grain, stacked under tarpaulins, and it is estimated that at the rate grain is being delivered at present, at least 40 trucks per day will be necessary for a couple of months yet to compete with the delivery. As no station buildings or goods sheds are as yet erected, the farmers are compelled to adopt the very disagreeable alternative of leaving their sacks to the flimsy protection of a tarpaulin ; and the railway authorities do not seem to be able to afford more than about a dozen trucks per day. Meantime a heavy S. W. gale would certainly play havoc with the wheat already awaiting shipment.

Fire. —A destructive fire occurred last Thursday at Mr. R. Lancaster’s slaughter yards, situated on the north bank of the Ashburton river, about a mile below the township. The property consisted of a stock-yard and sheep-pens, together with a building and store which contained a very compact little boiling down plant. The whole of this was destroyed, together with seven sheep, a valuable sheep-dog, which Mr. Lancaster considered of more value than any man on his staff, and about two tons of tallow ready for shipment. The property was insured for Ll5O, and the proprietor estimates his loss at L2OO over and above this. The origin of the fire is at present a mystery. Mr. Thomas Brankin, the nearest resident, found the place on fire on his arrival home, but it had too great a hold then for him to do any good. Mourning —On Thursday last inquiries were made as to the meaning of a “ blue ribbon ” that had suddenly been traced all round the Somerset Hotel. The “ ribbon ” is a blue band of several inches deep, painted on the walls midway between the windows and the verandah roof, and is the sailor’s sign of mourning. When the owner, captain, or other popular officer of a ship dies, it is customary to paint their grief line along the vessel’s side from stem to stern, and the ribbon is looked i Upon by the “ sons of the waves ” as the deepest tribute they can pay to the deceased’s memory. Mr. R. S. Shearman, ak most of his friends know, was a seafaring man before he took to the profession he is now following, and he adopts the mode referred to of paying a tribute to the memory of his deceased mother, who no doubt spent many a night of of anxiety for the safety of her “ boy in blue,” when the winds their revels kept. Me. Westbrooke’s Tether Rope.— Two men named Phillip Crumb and John Miles, who, on the IGth, indulged in a joke at the expense of the Rev. Mr. Westbrooke, the outcome of an overindulgence in beer, were charged yesterday at the R.M. Court with the theft of the rope, which they had cut from the rev. gentleman’s horse's neck while it was tethered to his fence. The case was proven at the “mouth of two or three witnesses ” —men of standing and of good report—who appealed along with Mr. Westbrooke, for the Court’s leniency in prisoners’ favor. His Worship, after reading the men a lecture on the evils of drink, told them he would allow the appeal for leniency to weigh with him, and as they were not of the criminal class he would discharge them rather than send them to prison to associate with felons, but he expressed a hope that this escape from being imprisoned would be a lesson to them to guard in future against drunkenness. Templar Hall Company. The adjourned annual meeting of the shareholders of this company was held on Thursday evening last in the Temlar Hall. There wsVs a very good attendance of shareholders. Mr. G. H. fSt. Hill was voted to the chair. After reading the notice calling the meeting, and the minutes of the last meeting, the Chairman said the first business would be to adopt the balance-sheet. The balancesheet for the year ending 1879, was then read and unanimously adopted. The following wore o elected directors for the ensuing year ;—Messrs. Jatties Gudsell, sG. W, Andrews, G. H. St. Hill, Thomas Bcott, J. Mac Lean Dunn, B. 0. Smith, and Thomas Smith. Messrs. Boyle and Weeks were appointed auditors for the. Aunpany. Mr. Sando moved, and Mr. seconded —“That it be a recomHHw.ion to the newly elected directors SHfw Joiirage as much as possible those I tenants of the Hall who are likely to become permanent.” This was carried. The Chairman said the next business was to get the opinion of the shareholders present, on a certain matter, which the late 'chairman of the company (Mr. Sando) had not as yet explained satisfactorily—viz., certain sums due to the company on' arrears of shares. After a very anirriSited debate, which lasted a considerable time, it was resolved that the matter be referred to the new directors, to be decided upon at their next meeting, and for them to take immediate action in the matter. The meeting then adjourned sine die.

Induction of "Rev B. J./Westbrook. —The induction services in connection with the Rev. B. J. WesßWgok’s assumption of the charge of the Presbyterian congregation at Rakaia, took place last Thursday at 11 o’clock in theßakaiaTown Hall, which was very well attended. The Rev. Mr. Beattie, who has acting as moderator of the Rakaia session,.preached and conducted the induction ceiemony, while the Rev. Mr. Eimslhj. addressed the pastor, and the Rev. Mr. Blake the con- : •-'rogation. The induction was celebrated by a soiree in the evening in the same building, at which 200 people sat down to well prepared tea tables, loaded with tempting things, and attended .by the ladies of j the congregation, amongst whom we observed'Mesdames Bruce, Wilkinson, Sharp, M'Phail, and Clark, andMkses Bruce, Malcolm, Shannon, and MHbJI. Tea over, the usual meeting mfflwed, which was presided over by the nBPpMn- { ducted Pastor, whom the introduced in a felicitous speec) , ’f* n ' v ' ft ichj he augured, from the unanimlt^^- 0 * the settlement, a successful future riSf*'both pastor and charge. He spoke very highly of Mi\ Westbrooke, whoso relations with himself had been of the most brotherly character. The meeting wasi then addressed by the Rev. Mr. 'Westbrooke himself, and also by Rev. Mr. Blake. During the evening the proceedings were enlivened by selections of sacred music, very well rendered by the Ashburton choir, under Mr. Savage, with Mr. Stott at the harmonium, and by a piano duet played Ary tastefully by Misses Carson and Bruce, aHtjwthe sacred solo “ Consider the by Mr. Carson, and usual votes of meeting, which was attended by a large number of people ’ from the sur- ] rounding district and from Ashburton. Blackguardism. —For a considerable time complaints have been rife of drunken men, in their search for a notorious house in the outskirts of the township, mistaking the residences of respectable townspeople for the stew they wore in search of, and making disturbances when refused admission. A case of this character was heard in Court yesterday, when two men named James Patterson and William Henry were charged with disturbing the peace of a dwelling by being illegally*--on the premises of Mr. William Barrett. It came out in evidence that while hunting for a certain house called the “ lean-to,” they made a mistake, and wanted admission to Mr. Barrett’s house, under the impression that they had found the pfatep-Rlay wanted. It was late at night on St. Patr rick’s Day, and Mr. Barrett’s family had retired to rest. The disturbance caused by the row the men made had the effect of making Mrs. Barrett seriously ill, and the creators of the disturbance ivere afterwards taken to the lock-up by Mr. Barrett and his neighbor, Mr. Henry Stephenson, who kindly came to his aid on hearing Mrs. Barrett’s screams. His Worship found Patterson guilty of being illegally on the premises, and sentenced him to three months’ imprisonment, letting off Henry, ivho had not been 1 proved to have been on the ground. The Magistrate said it could not be tolerited that drunken ruffians should be allowed to visit private houses in the dead of night, frightening females and causing a feeling of insecurity. The severity of the sentence will probably act as a warning against blackguardism of this kind in the,future. Beware. —Smokers may be interested to learn (a German correspondent writes) ' that the German Federal Council has resolved to permit the use of cherry leaves in the fabrication of tobacco. , The Homeless Poor. —The idea has been conceived of establishing public , warming rooms in the different quarters of Paris, where poor homeless folk trill be admitted and given a bowl of soup without any preliminary questioning. Two or three are already open. The Glasgow Bank Relief Fund.— The Mayor of Christchurch has received the report of the Central Relief Committee of the Glasgow Bank, which shows the total amount reported up to December 31st to be L 380,428, and the amount received by the general treasurer, L 262,230.

The Dunedin Murdeh.—The remains of the murdered Dewar family were interred in the southern cemetery on Thursday. The procession was a large one. The inquest on the bodies was resumed the same day, and further adjourned. Several witnesses were examined, but nothing new was elicited connecting the prisoner Butler with the matter, !v .0 Peter’s Pence. —The “Italic” gives an account of Peter’s pence collections during this year. iecordiug to this statement, France contributed 1,100,000 f. ; America, 900,000 f. ; Great Britain and Ireland, 750,000 f. ; Austria- Hungry, 700,000 f.; Italy, 600,000 f. ; Belgium, 300,000 f. ; Germany, 150,000 f. ; Holland, 60,000 f. ; and Switzerland, 30,000 f. Fever at Cawnpore.—A correspondent from Cawnpore, writing to the “Indian Railway Service Gazette,” says the number of deaths in that station from fever have been averaging 'l5O per day. Demand for wood to supply the burning ghats has been so great that the' sipinning mills have been compelled to use coal, which is generally much dearer than wood or fuel. An Eccentric Female.—An old lady died recently in Brighton, Englahd. who though possessed of a comfortable’incbme, has lived for years in the most i: pinched and squalid way in a single room in the lowest part of the town. She used to go out every day with a basket of bread crumbs to feed the birds, but allowed herself no fire, and only food enough to keep herself alive. Earth Cables.—One of the advantages of subterranean telegraph lines has been brought out by the recent snow storms on the Continent. In France the aerial lines round Paris broke down, and communication between the capital and provinces was seriously impeded ; but in Germany no inconvenience was felt, thanks to her admirable of earth cables.

Interim Report by the Native Commission.—The “ Evening Post ” of Wednesday says—We understand that Sir W. Fox and Sir F. Dillon Bell, two members of the Royal Commission on Native Affairs, have presented an ad interim report to His Excellency the Governor. The nature of this important document has not yet transpired, but it ;i is u’umored that it deals with certain matters -brought before the Commissioners, in regard to which they found no difficulty ip arriving at a prompt decision. We believe that the Commissioners state their ppinions in respect to these matters, aijd,, suggest that great benefit plight arise from giving immediate effect,to the various recommendations made' by them which would produce a markedly favorable impression on the Native mind, and have a lai’ge amount of influence for showing as it would the desire of and of Europeans generally to deal out swift and even-handed justice to both races alike. So far as we have been able to gather, it is thought that if instant action be taken in the direction suggested it would be likely to induce a strong reaction against the influence of Te Whiti, which might be very desirable just at the- present time, when the prophet’s great meeting at Parihaka is taking place. By practical proof it would be an offer of tho/good ;faith of Government, and their determination to mete out strict justice regardless of nationality. It is - improbable that the precise nature of the Commissioners’ recommendations will be made public for a few days, owing to the alsence from Wellington of his Excellency the Governor.

A Turkish prince, who is at present staying in London, had himself relieved, during a ramble the other day, of a pocket-book containing L 1,200. ,A,n Old Order. —The Benedictine Order is making preparations for celebrating daring the present year the 1400th anniversary of the birth of their founder. Teeth not Necessary. —An English judge recently decided that a set of false teeth were not “necessaries” for a farmer’s wife, and nonsuited a dentist who had supplied them without any express authority from the husband. Married Too Much. —An actress recently obtained a divorce from her second husband in London on the somewhat novel ground that when she married him in 1876, her first husband, whom she had married in 1867, and who had loft her soon after, was, without her knowledge, still living. Ho also had married a second time in 1872, and did not die until 1877. Antiquarian. Some antiquities recently discovered in the Roumanian district of Prahova, near the Trifoi Mountains. lead local arclueologists to believe it to be the site of the ancient city of Trifulum, dating from the fourth century, and established by a colony of Visigoths. . A small red stone, with a sculptured bust of Alaric L, is among the articles found there. Surgeons and the Electric Lamp.— Trouvd has invented a number of small electric lamps which can be used by the surgeon in illuminating the throat, the meuth, or eion the more internal parts of the body while performing an operation. It is now suggested that it would be possible to materially assist the physician in his diagnosis by means of a powerful electric light. On the assumption that the human body is only semi-opaque it is proposed to place the patient in such a position in connection with a dark screen that it is probable a powerful electric light would sufficiently illuminate his interior to enable the physician in the dark room to see so much of the workings of the principal organs as would assist him to arrive at a correct conclusion as to the nature of the case. If such a scheme is possible it would undoubtedly be of much advantage to medicine. Tobacco add Taxation. The last number of the “Imperial Statistics of Germany ” compares the taxation of the chief nations of the world in respect to tobacco. Of the countries where the sale is a Government monopoly, France last 'year stood first, the gross duty, with profits, amounting to 7s. 1-J-d. per head of the population annually, the net revenue from the article being ss. per head. In Austria the gross was ss. b^d., the net 3s. sd. ; in Hungary, thegross 3s. 3£d., the net Is. 7d. ; in Italy, the gross 3s. lid., and the net 2s. B£d. In Great Britain, the duty and licenses brought in 4s. 10|d. i per head of the population for the year, and''in the United States 4s. 4ld. In > Germany, on the other hand, where the f duty was very light, the average was no i more than 7|d. per head of the popula- • tion. The new tariff which has been ipassed this year will make the next return ; for Germany much heavier.

A Primitive Nation.— The new Mexican interoceanic railway across the Tehiuantepec Isthmus is marked out to pass through the State of Chiapas, which probably contains the only population in the world which possesses no iron, nor anything in the shape of an iron industry, even of the crudest form. For the distance of eighty miles round Palenque, the capital, not a single blacksmith can be found, and the only articles in the shape of iron are axes and machetas, imported from the United States. Nails are unknown, all the woodwork being held together by cord or the tendrils of the ;vines, and even the tortilla is prepared by grinding the maize between stones. The new railway which will run through this territory has clearly a well-defined educational, as well as commercial, development to undertake.

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Ashburton Guardian Ashburton Guardian, Volume 1, Issue 76, 20 March 1880

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