Mount Somers Railway. —We understand that this line will be open for traffic in a few days. Henry Irving. —Henry Irving, the great Shakesperian actor, has a first cousin in Ashburton, in the wife of a genial and well-known contractor. Abe Hicken. —Abe Hicken, “ with a galaxy of other talent,” displays the “ manly art of self-defence in all its grace and beauty ” in the Town Hall on Monday evening. The Christchurch Tramway. —During Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday of this week, the Easter Review and race days, the Christchurch tramway .carried 7,500 passengers. The Grain Trade. —For the first four days of the present week, 50,393 bags of grain were carried on the Christchurch section and branches. On Thursday night the bags accumulated at the various stations amounted to 29,349. Matson and Co.’s Sale. —A very large crowd of farmers and others attended Matson and Co.’s sale of farm, stocking, .and implements yesterday at the saleyards. The property sold was that in the estate of the late Mr. John Joyce, and comprised some splendid horses, cattle, and implements. The A. and P. Association. —The meeting of the A. and P. Association should have been held on Thursday, but wasn’t —only one member rolling up. The announcement of the meeting only appeared in one paper—hence the failure. The next meeting will be held on Tuesday, the 13th. Heavy Yields. —Mr. Isaac Sargent, of the Ashburton Forks, is at present threshing out from 104 acres, the fair average of 47f bushels of wheat per acre, and asplendid sample. This, however, is somewhat exceeded by Mr. Jamieson, of the Wakanui road, who threshed out, last week, G 8 bushels to the acre. Settling Day. —The settling for the autumn meeting at Christchurch took place yesterday afternoon, when the following stakes were paid over : —Fraser, LlB4 ; Mason and Yallance, L 550 ; the Hon. R. Campbell, L3CS ; Cutts, L 142 (only half paid for the Epsom Stakes walk over) ; Goodman, L9O ; Butler, L 46 ; and Plummer (hack race), LlO. Bee Keeping. —Dr. Irving’s lecture is announced for 13th April. Perhaps no man in New Zealand is better able to tell us all that is known and worth knowing about bees, and how to make their honeyproducing powers profitable, than is Dr. Irving, and we would recommend those who have an hour to spare of an evening to make a note of the date. The lecture, we feel sure, will he worth stealing an hour from very pressing business to hear. The Chelmsford Township. The building allotments in the new township of Chelmsford, at Lagmohr, will be put up to auction this day, by Messrs. Acland, Camybell, and Co., at the stores of Messrs. Jameson and Roberts, West street. There are 186 sections altogether, some quarter acre, some half-acre. The township is on the new Mount Somers line, and a station will probably be erected near it. The sale commences at one o’clock, and immediately after the sale of the sections, some eight or nine farms in the near vicinity will be sold. The Supreme Court Sessions. —The following is the criminal calendar for the next sittings of the Supreme Court at Christchurch Michael Murphy, obtaining money by false pretences ; W. H. Hudson, larceny; Henry Russell and John Walsh, larceny and receiving stolen property ; Ellen Stokes, larceny ; Frederick Sandberg, larceny ; James Gardiner, horse stealing (two cases) ; John O’Brien, horse stealing and larceny ; James Stephens, larceny ; Bernard Neavy, larceny ; Peter Martin, indecent assault; Henry Mason and William Palmer, placing obstructions on a railway ; George Wilson, attempt to committ a felony ; E. G. Crisp v. Joseph Ivess, libel; G. G. Stead v. George Fenwick, libel. A Rev. Poet. —The rev. gentleman mentioned in the following paragraph is the clergyman who was the predecessor of the Rev. W. Keall in the Wesleyan charge at Ashburton. We take the cutting from the “Wesleyan” : —“ A new poem from a new author is in New Zealand an event so novel that I may congratulate myself on the rare privilege of being the first to give publicity to the announcement. Anything in the way of detailed criticism of the work is for the present held over. I simply call attention to the fact that the Rev. W. B. Marten, of Manawatu, has written a poem based on the incident of Christ weeping over Jerusalem, and that that poem will in a few days be offered for sale to the public for the modest sum of one shilling. It will, if I mistake not, be found to well repay a careful perusal, and as the first literary venture of a wellknown and respected minister of our Church, I anticipate for the work a ready sale and a favorable reception.”
Unclaimed Letters. —We are indebted to Mr. St. G. Douglas, the Ashburton postmaster, for the following list of letters received at the Ashburton Post Office from places beyond the colony during the month of February, and remaining unclaimed on April 1, 1880 James Allen, Thomas Connor, W. Bradshaw, Da.-id Dawson, James N. Dunn, Jas. Bsprey (2), Chas. Gale (2), Joseph McMaghan, Jeremiah O’Neil, John H. Sullivan. St. Mark’s Church, Rakaia. —Harvest thanksgiving services were held in St. Mark’s Church, Rakaia, on Thursday, April 1, at 4 o’clock in the afternoon. The church had been very tastefully decorated for Easter and this occasion by the ladies of the parish. On the altar were vases containing bunches of wheat, and several beautiful bunches of grapes and clusters of apples from Cor war were suspended from the decorations on the reredos. The church was well filled. Prayers were read by the incumbent, the Rev. W. H. Elton. The first lesson was read by the Rev. W. E. Paige, and the second lesson by the Yen. Archdeacon Harper, by whom also a most impressive seimon was preached on the subject of thanksgiving. The service was choral throughout, the singing being heartily joined in by the whole of the congregation. The offertory at the close of the sermon amounted to L2 18s. A tea meeting in connection with the church was afterwards held in the Town Hall, when a sumptuous repast was provided by Mesdames Elton, C. H. Maclean, Partridge, Passmore, E. S. Coster, C. S. Mackie, and Cox. The bachelors’ table was presided over by the Misses Cox and MUormick. The tea was quite a success, the large room being well filled. After tea was over, a little impromptu singing was provided by several ladies and gentlemen, who received a large measure of wellmerited applause. A gift auction was proceeded with, when the articles usually to be found at those institutions were put up, and knocked down at prices varying with the humour of the audience. Mr. T. A. Winter officiated as auctioneer, and did his work well, the result of the sale amounting to about L4O. The receipts for the day should reach very near L6O.
Proposed New Railway Arrangements. —We understand that very important re-arrangements of the railway trams’ arrivals and departures will shortly take pla-e, and that something very like the following time-table will take the place of that now in use. The first train will leave Ashburton at a quarter to seven (instead of at ten minutes past six as at present), and reach Christchurch about ten o’clock. A second will arrive hi Ashburton at 9.25 a.m. from Timara (which place it will leave at a quarter to seven in the morning), and it will leave Ashburton at twenty minutes before t3n, reaching Christchurch at about a quinS ec past twelve. The present passenger arrangements for the goods 11.10 train wi‘l be discontinued, but a mixed • vain at another hour in the afternoon will be substituted, by which passengers can reach Rakaia or Bolleston, and transfer to the express, which will leave Ashburton soon after five. The mixed train will stop at all stations this side of Rolleston. From Christchurch an ordinary Malvern iram will leave before the express, and stop at all stations up to Rolleston junction, where passengers by it for the South will wait for the express. The express will leave Christchurch at 8.25 a.m., stopping nowhere till it reaches Rolleston. From Rolleston, south, it will stop at all stations to Ashburton. Another train wi'l leave Christchurch at two o’clock, reaching Ashburton about five, and leave for Timaru immediately after the express has arrived here, and arriving at Timaru, i.'s final destination, at 7.45, A third train will leave Christchurch about 4.40 p.m., reaching Ashburton about eight. The new arrangements will enable passengers from Timaru to make Ihe double journey to Christchurch in one day, and will be an incalculable benefit to Ashburton, from whence to Christchurch and back the journey will be done in eight hours with time for business in the city.
“Afloat and Ashore.” —This drama, which has been in cateful and diligent preparation by our local dramatic club for many weeks past, was produced last night to as well-filled a house as we have seen in ishburton since the prosperous times of 18 months ago. Like all new machinery set a going for the first time, there was a little stiffness observable, and here and there the too audible prompter’s voice evidenced either faulty memory, or a failure on the part of one or two of the performers to be completely letter perfect; but, taking the thing as a whole, it was fairly well performed. There were one or two hitches —there always are some in a first production," no matter who plays—but these will disappear to-morrow night, without doubt. We have no criticism to offer of any of the individual performers, being thoroughly satisfied that they did their best, and that best will become better with more experience. If we are to say anything in praise of any individuals, we must certainly compliment the ladies who assumed the parts of Cicely Chips and Ruth Ringroso. Cicely was very happy in her particularly sprightly part, and her companion made a very modest and effective Ruth. The heroes of the piece—Hal Oakford and Newton Barnard —got through their parts very well indeed, and Joshua Boynton scored a point or two with his droll “ Dear, dear.” But perhaps the most popular of the whole was Billy Billberry, who was extravagantly amusing. Abd Ali, a fine looking Arab, with a splendid figure, acted his part as well as he looked it, while Capt. Crofton, who assumed his character at a night’s notice, was very effective. Abel Ringrose, Ralph Oakford, Omar Pasha, Mirza, Casouba, and Ben Kelson, were all represented as well as we expected them to be, and that was very fairly, while the clodhoppers, etc., were as numerous and as stolid as clodhoppers usually are. The piece depends mostly on scenery for its effect, and the company are exceedingly fortunate in having Mr. C. Bourke amongst their number. While the piece was in preparation he spent every spare hour he had in painting scenes, and his facile brush turned up trumps last night, for the excellence of his work atoned for any faults that might have been apparent in the performers. Taking the representation all round, it went very well, and we must compliment the amateurs on attempting and getting through on the first night so well with a piece of such a weighty character as “Ashore and Afloat. ” To-night the drama will be again given, and we doubt not they will have an attendance that will amply reward their efforts.
The Maori Prisoners. —The Maori prisoners will be tried on the Ist of July. A Pierced Heart. —A post-mortem examination on a man who died recently in Saxony revealed the fact that deceased had had a needle sticking in his heart for years. The Nelson Education Board. —The Nelson Education Board have appointed Mr. Stead Ellis, of Christchurch, secretary, at a salary of L 250 per annum. There were thirty-four applications sent in. Alleged Manslaughter. —A woman, named Ellen Sarah Kitts, has been arrested at Kumara on a charge of manslaughter, through having neglected a child given to her to nurse, which died. The jury returned a verdict to that effect. Energy. —Our energy is in proportion to the resistance it meets. We can attempt nothing great but from a sense of the difficulties we have to encounter; we can persevere in nothing great but.from a pride in overcoming them.—W. Haaliti I
Low Rent, —At the Greymouth Assessment Court the statement was made by an appellant, and afterwards verified on oath, that a man lived in one of his houses for nothing, and left it because he bad got a better house at the same rental. The judge, however, refused to reduce the assessment. Cultivation of the Soil. —A correspondent of the Auckland Weekly News writes as follows :—“ In your article on the cultivation of the soil, you left un-said one of the principal reasons why so few take up farming as a means of livelihood. I allude to the. way children are brought up. Most parents in towns endeavor to obtain a Government billet for their sons, and they are brought up so artificially and effeminately that they have not the pluck to do hard work Until boys in towns are educated for an agricultural life there will always be a large proportion of the town population wasting their lives.” Though the writer exaggerates the evil very greatly, there is a proportion of truth in his remarks.
Native Affairs. A New Plymouth telegram of the Ist says :—Notwithstanding the sensational telegrams forwarded' by correspondents to newspapers in other parts of the colony, native affairs were never more favorable than at the present time. We have it on the authority of those who arc thoroughly acquainted with the natives that there is no sign of warlike intention on the part of the Maoris at Parihaka or on the Plains. They have never shown more friendly feelings towards Europeans than that exhibited at the present time. The natives at Parihaka are ail engaged preparing ground for planting potatoes, of which there will be a larger area put down than during any previous season. The natives at Eureho are very friendly, and take no money for the produce which they supply to the camp, insisting on making it a present. When the road party crosses the boundary, and enters on Parihaka territory, we learn that the roads will be allowed to be made without any aggressive action on the part of the Natives. The Law of Bankruptcy. —The following extract from a recent issue of the “ Taranaki Herald” will be of interest to business men, as furnishing another judicial interpretation of an important portion of the Bankruptcy Act: “An application was made this morning by Mr. Govett at the District Court, for the final discharge of John Driscoll, a debtor. The trustee’s report was unfavorable to the bankrupt, but his Honor held that a trustee could not oppose a debtor in obtaining his order of discharge, it being the duty of the creditors to do so. It was stated to the Court that in this case a meeting of creditors had been convened for the purpose of considering the debtor’s application for discharge, but none of the creditors attended the meeting. His Honor said he noticed in the report of the meeting of creditors, the trustee was instructed to oppose the discharge of the debtor, but the Act did not contemplate such a mode of procedure, as the trustee was as much the trustee of the debtor as he was of the creditors. His Honor granted the order of discharge, with costs. ”
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