The Ashburton Guardian. WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 22, 1880. Love and Electricity.
TOWN EDITION. [lssued at 5 i>. m. ]
Some days ago it was announced from Wellington that there was some trouble in the telegraph office, the result of which had been that either the tall and handsome Maginnity must resign his .position of second in command of the department, or the department must lose the services of the whole force of lady telegraphists. Mr. Maginnity accepted the inevitable, and resigned. The department accepted his resignation, and as we read the paragraph we thought that the great Maginnity had been lost for ever to the telegraphic service of the colony, that for bending at the shrine of beauty six feet of telegraphic male superintendent had been sacrificed to save the services of an army of smiling lady operators. But the colony is not, after all, to lose the services of the great Maginnity, nor is it to lose, either, the services of its lady telegraphists. The Maginnity’s resignation was accepted, to be sure, but he was immediately appointed to another situation in the service, only a buttonhole lower in point of grade. We are told that the offence of the Maginnity was that he had been guilty of a “ social escapade ” —an escapade that had evidently raised the wrath and incurred the execrations of all the females whose master in a social sense he was —driven them to the extreme course of demanding the dismission of their head on pain of their own renunciation of their situations. Maginnity had a position of trust —he had the oversight of a large number of civil servants, and a large number of these were young females. We do not know the particulars of the female operators 1 charge against him, and we don’t want to know. His friends of the press call it simply an “ indiscretion,” and Government do not seem to consider it a very heinous one. But the telegraph girls considered it sufficient to compromise their good name if he were allowed to remain their master, and he himself seems to consider it sufficiently scandalous to call for his resignation, and he has sent it in. But a “ curled darling” like Maginnity is too great a man to be wholly sat upon, so he is quietly shunted on to a side station till the young ladies’ wrath against his “ indiscret” immorality subsides, when we may expect again to see the Maginnity once more shining as a great man in the Civil service. But the conduct of the Government in this Maginnity affair is, to say the least of it, questionable. He is a telegraph manager whose place could be easily filled at a moment’s notice from the ranks of those who have been sacrificed—not for outraging morality and the common decency of society—not for incapacity as telegraphists, nor for any fault of their own personal characters —but simply because the retrenchment
policy of the Ministry required that the salaries they earned should oe saved to the colony. Without regard to merit or length of service, many of these men have received their walking ticket, with the conventional polite regret that the circumstances of the colony necessitated the dispensing with their services. Without a breath even of suspicion against their characters they had to go. It may have seemed to them hard, cruel, even unjust, but go they must, and they went —many of them who had grown grey in the colony’s service. But when Maginr tty resigns—run to earth by the execrations of a crowd of decent women, another place is found for him in which to hide till the storm has cooled. Truly our Government is careful of its friends, and patient with the erring. The decent honest men who went out with unstained name are supposed to be strong and wealthy, in the possession of a good character, and will be able to fight their way in the world; but the poor Maginnily, who has been “ indiscreet,” would fare badly, so a place must be found for him. And it is found. An equitable and consistent Government sees no necessity for making room by the Maginnity’s resignation for some decent, respectable man, whose seventeen or twenty years’ unimpeachable service to the colony could not save him from the pressure of the retrenchment screw, but we fancy the general public will see with other eyes, and eyes less less kindly to the amorous Maginnity.
Scholastic. —In another column Miss Steanc, well known in this district a;- an efficient teacher, announces her intention of opening a superior private school for pupils at Rakaia.
Cambridge Newland. The school district hitherto known as Cambridge is, after the first January, to be known as Newland. A post office will also open at the Newland schoolhonao, Mr. H. Cape Williamson being postmaster.
Slaughter House Licenses. —Holders of slaughter house licenses are reminded that licenses expire on the 31st of this month. Intending applicants for renewal should apply to the County Council at its meeting on the sih of January.
Professor Haselmater. Professor Haselmayer’s entertainments have always been popular in Nov/ Zealand, and the one he is to give to-night in the Town Hall should be specially so, inasmuch as, in addition to the good things he has always been able to show in the past, he entertains his friends with many novelties. Amongst those are some exceedingly wellii’ained birds, the performances of the automaton Psycho, and the aid lent to the Professor by Madam Haselmayer.
The High School Mastership. —The High School governors met at 11 a.m. today, to interview the five candidates whose testimonials had induced the Board to invite their personal attendance. Present—Dr. Trevor (in the chair), Messrs. Cox, Grigg, Saunders, and Wright. After a conversation with each of the candidates, Mr. Hogg, 8.A., Cambridge, and lately mathematical teacher at the Wellington High School, was unanimously elected. The Principal of the Wellington High School describes him as “a scholar, a gentleman, and a Christian.”
“The Big Gooseberry”—The “big gooseberry " season is a sort of standing joke, ami it is usually said there is very little else to notice when the “ big gooseberry " paragraph rolls up. That may be or may not bo, but the big gooseberry we are about to notice is one—or rather many —grown by Mr. St. Hill of this town, and is noticed, less on account of their size, than as an evidence of what can be «one in this district. Mr. St. Hill procured his bushes two years ago from Mr. George Smith, nurseryman, Ashburton, and tiiey must have been well worth buying when they give at this early date such a full crop as they do of berries as largo as early potatoes. Mr. St. Hill showed us a dozen or so to-day, and applying his always handy rule to each of them, it was found that each berry measured longitudinally over an inch and a half, and nearly an inch in diameter. Six of them were weighed in our presence and scaled just three ounces, an average of half an ounce per gooseberry.
Rottenness in the Wool Market.— An Auckland telegram says : —Hitherto there has been very little re-sorting of wool down here after it was sold at auction, and cheats, which have been perpetrated, have not been discovered until after the wool arrived in London, where no proceedings could be taken there against offenders. This year, however, a different policy is being pursued. Several large purchasers are having all bales and packages opened after the sale, the wool taken wholly out, carefully examined and re-sorted. This work has brought to light a greater degree of iniquity than was ever imaged to exist. So had arc some of the evil practices which have already been detected, that some of the original sellers have had to come to such terms as were satisfactory to buyers. In one case the packing of a number of bales of wool was so carefully and systematically done that no doubt could exist as to the intentions of the vendor.
Vagrancy. A Stiff Sentence. Israel Luke, aliaa Austin, got it hot today from Messrs. John Ollivicr and H. T. Winter, JJ P.. Luke is an incorrigible, and has been through the hands of the police on too many occasions for the safety of the lieges generally. He has been before the Court for highway robbery, and several equally heinous offences, and to-day ho was charged with vagrancy. Luke’s mode of living is by loafing about public houses, asking for shouts, and threatening to fight those who refuse. Nobody could be produced to say they ever saw him do any work, but there were plenty of witnesses to prove him a confirmed loafer, while the police produced a very long and black record of convictions. The Justices thought ho was a pest to society, and a specially dangerous fellow in a town like Ashburton, to which place he would be liko’y to give a bad name. It was in the discharge of a duty to society that he would he removed from the chance of doing mischief for a lengthened period, and he was sentenced to twelve months’ imni’isoiimeut with hard labor.
The Fire Brigade Carnival.— The programme of the Fire Brigade Concert and Demonstration is published this evening in another column. In connection with the concert we are permitted to state that G. D. Branson, Esq., has kindly undertaken the position of manager of the musical portion of the affaii, and in the glees will be supported by the best amateur talent in the district. The champions at the Caledonian Sports on that day will exhibit their feats on Hie “light fantastic,” and win their battles o’er again on the stage, to the soul-inspiring strains of Piper Elder. The local items of the “Stump Speech” and the “Fire Brigade Song ” are, we understand, in good hands, and will be appreciated by the audience. The great feature, however, will be the Torchlight Procession and the display of Fireworks at ten o’clock, when the juveniles of .Ashburton will have a treat provided for them such as has never yet gladdened their eyes. We understand that nearly half the tickets are alrea ly sold, so that early application is neeess. ry by those desirous of being present at a really first-class entertainment.
Scholarships. —There arc thirty candidates for the the Senior Scholarships offered by the Education Board of Otago, and over lifty for the Junior Scholarships. Closed. The Evening Telegraph, Timarn, has ceased publication, havingbeen absorbed by the South Canterbury Times, the proprietor of which- has purchased both the plant and goodwill of ' the Telegraph. The Nelson Bankruptcy. —Wymond and Co., an extensive drapery establishment in Nelson, went through some weeks ago, and the smash was so great and so suspicious that the creditors refused the sole partner in the firm, T. S. Wymond, his discharge, and resolved- to - prosecute him for fraudulent bankruptcy. The case took a new development at the Christchurch -R.M. Court to-day, at which Martha. Wymond, bankrupt's wife, and P. A. Wymond, her nephew, were charged with the larceny of 30 cases of goods, the property of the bankrupt estate. Prisoners had been arrested on a warrant from Wellington, and were remanded to Nelson. Bail was allowed.
Gladstone and Bright. —lt is pleasant to know that none of his former colleagues is more hearty in his admiration than the greatest of them all, and the one whose birth and training might have been expectedto make him the least appreciative—■ John Bright. Disagreeing with Mr. Gladstone on many grave questions, seeing in him theonly rival to his own oratorical preeminence, he is the most warm and generous in his praises. A story was lately told how Mr. Bright, hearing a lady rail at Mr. Gladstone, suddenly turned and asked her, “ Has your son ” (the boy was standing beside them) ‘ ‘ ever seen Mr. Gladstone?” “No,” was the surprised answer. “Then take him to’see the greatest Englishman he is ever likely to look upon.”— Scribner for November.
The English Channel Tunnel.— The works which are going on at Abbot Cliff Tunnel, between Folkestone and Dover, on the South-eastern railway, in connection with the sinking of a shaft for testing the geological formations of the locality, with a view to the formation of a tunnel between England and Prance, were inspected July 20th, and pronounced satisfactory by M. Leon Say and the French engineers, including M. Duval, M. Oreton, and the Count de Montebello. A shaft 90 feet deep has been sunk from the level of the engine-house at high ■water and a heading has been driven to the level of high water mark for the purpose of depositing the chalk. Powerful machinery has been fixed for driving an atmospheric drill, with which it is intended to drive a heading as far as Dover, a distance of three miles, under the line of railway, the heading at Dover to be 300 feet deep. The experiments arc being carried out under the direction of Col. Beaumont and Captain English. The South-eastern Railway Company have made a grant of £30,000 for the purpose. —Scientific American.
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