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The San Francisco Mail is expected to arrive at Lyttelton about noon tomorrow, and the Ashburton portion will most probably be delivered on Saturday evening.

The Old Men’s Home.—The mister of the Old Men’s Home wishes to ack- owledge with thanks the receipt of one hag of apples for the inmates, from Mrs. Olliver, of Westerfield. Release of a Prisoner.—Edward Clarkson, who was sentenced in November, 1879, to ten years’ imprisonment for robbery, was released to-day in consequence of having received serious injuries by a fall of earth while at work.

An Unfounded Charge.—At the enquiry into the charges by Dr. Purchase against the masters of the Auckland Grammar School, Di. Purchase withdrew clause 4 of his memo, against Mr. Anderson, classical master, as he heard since that Mr. Anderson was abstemious as to stimulants, and expressed regrcl at making such charge. Mr. Anderson declined to accept the apology. A Suspicious Fire.—An enquiry was held at Oamaru, yesterday, into the circumstances attending the fire at Messrs. Diehl and Davidson’s mill, and the j ury returned the following verdict : —“ The jury find that the Otepopo mill, belonging to Messrs. Diehl and Davidson, was burned down on the night of the 27th January, under very suspicious circumstances, but there is no evidence to show how th-. fire originated. They have also to comment in strong terms on the unsatisfactory nature of the evidence as given by James Davison, one of the partners of the firm.”

The Newtown Fire.—ln connection with the sad affair at Newtown (Wellington) m which three children Were burned in a burning house, it transpires that there was a very complete arrangement for alarming the Fire Brigade in We dington ; but some unknown or impulsive individual, ignorant of how the diing worked, seized the isolated wire and pulled with all his might, as if he were ringing a bell. The consequence was he pulled the wire away from the connector, and, of course, the telegraphic signal was not given. By this unfortunate piece of absurdity help was prevented from being sent to the burning building Shocking Accident at a Sunday School Picnic.—At the Wesleyan Sunday School picnic at Taraneki, on Wednesday afternoon, a fatal accident happened to a number of children swinging on branches of a fallen trunk of a tree, which was resting on its branches, when a branch broke, causing the trunk of the tree to roll over. A little boy named Darcy Harold Jackson, about six years old, was passing, when the trunk rolled over and crushed him to death. A little girl named Woodcock was also knocked down by the branches and severely hurt, her leg being broken. A boy named Malcolm Clen had his thigh broken. The tree was 30ft. in length and 7ft in diameter.

Another Fire at Paeihaka. —Another large fire has occurred at Parihaka, causing extensive destruction of potatoes fully thirty acres of this crop being totally destroyed. None of the whares and other buildings were burnt, although it was only with the greatest difficulty that the natives were able to save their dwellings. All the men, women, and children worked like horses to save their homes and personal possessions. The fire is said to have originated through the bush becoming accidentally ignited by people of the Ngatiruanui tribe, who were clearing some bush land for sowing, and set fire to the fallen timber, the flames spreading to the forest and rapidly gaining the mastery.

The Australians at Nelson. The play, as far as has gone in the Nelson match, is against the Australians, who are either in particularly bad form or the men of Sleepy Hollow have developed a power in cricket that outsiders never gave them credit for possessing. Anyhow Nelson has made the best show against the great guns of the south that has yet been done in the colony, and the players of the prettiest town in New Zealand will nowwear their feather very high and claim to be somebody in particular. They managed to get the Australians out in their first innings for 72, and in their own first they made 83. Yesterday they played their own second innings for 77. The wickets were drawn at 4.15, leaving the Australians 98 to make to win. Breach op the Stamp Act.— Before the Wellington Bench, yesterday, an important case under the Stamp Act was heard. Messrs. John P. Watt and Albert Barnes being charged with a breach of the 108th section of the Act, by omitting to file w-ith the Commissioner of Stamps within six months from the granting of letters of administration, a statement in writing in respect of the property for which such administration had been granted. Counsel for the defendants admitted the offence, which had been committed r in consequence of the difficulty of obtaining the necessary forms at Wanganui, where the defendants resided. Mr. Izard, for the prosecution, did not press for a heavy penalty, this being the first ease of the kind brought before the Court. At the same time he wished to state that the defendants had put the Government to a great deal'of tfwjhjk)' and expense in the matter. Twelve : «ion*hs had elapsed since the administration had been granted. Defendants were fined 40s. eaph and costs.

Prohibited Hours.— HU Worship the R.M. to-day denounced one of our bylaws as an absurd one that deserved to be walked through. The by-law provides that no cattle, sheep, &c., shall be driven through the town except between the hours of 12 midnight and 7in the morning, if such cattle be intended for sale, slaughter, or shipment, and if the permission of the Borough Council have not been previously obtained for the driving. His Worship pointed out that in the case before him no attempt had been mads to prove that the sheep were intended for either sale, slaughter, or shipment, and the accused of course did' ’not go into the box to convict himself, a>|d consequently got oft His Worship dm. #ot see why more danger was to be apprehended from cattle that were going to'be milked than from those that were going to be killed, but possibly the framers of the law judged the animal intellect to be keener and more prophetic than his Worship does. . Anyhow, it will only be for a drover to prove that his cattle are neither going to sale, slaughter, nor shipment, and the elaborate of Foreman Brown will break down. The police were surprised to see the case brought, as they had been told not to enforce if. How is this thus ?

Fire.—A house and shed, the property of Mr. E. R. Deacon, Christchurch, were destroyed by fire this morning. The cause is unknown. The New Grain.—The first 150 tons of new wheat went through to port yesterday, and were loaded into the New Zealand Shipping Co. ’s ship Waimate. Action for Slander.—Mr. W. D. Stewart having refused to give such apology for a statement he made regarding touting for business during a dispute with Mr. Townsend MacDonnott, in the Dunedin Police Court the other day, as Mr. MacDermott will accept, an action will be commenced in the Supreme Court for L 2,000 damages for slander, to give Mr. Stewart an opportunity of justifying his remarks. A Nice Infant.—lnfancy has its privileges. A woman was arrested in Presburg, Hungary, for receiving stolen goods. She was by birth a Jewess, but six months previous to her dectection had been baptized into the Roman Catholic Church. When put upon her tidal she pleaded that she was an infant, and could not, therefore be held answerable for what she had done—the date of birth in Hungary running according to the date of baptism—and after serious cogitation the tribunal declared the defence a good one, and that she, a woman of forty, was legally but six months old, with a score of years before her which she might turn to dishonest account with impunity.— Chambers’ Journal. __ Templar Hall Company.—At the annual meeting of shareholders of the Templar Hall Company, held yesterday, there, was a fair attendance of members, and Mr. G. W. Andrews presided. The balance-' sheet was read and the Secretary’s report, and both were adopted. The income for the year had been L 137 9s. 4d., against an expenditure of LI 32 ss. fid. The assets amounted to L 493 19s. lOd., and the liabilities to L 152 Gs. 7d. It was decided to raise a loan of about Ll5O to wipe off a liability to the Building Society of L 126 7s. Bd. , and other small debts. Shares to the amount of L 291 had been sold, and there were still L 97 of capital not called up. It was decided to call a meeting in a month to consider the future of the Company. The following directors were elected for the ensuing year: Messrs. T. Smith, B. C. Smith, A. Andrews, P. A. Vaughan, T. Williams, and R. Smith. At the directors’ meeting that followed, Mr. G. W. Andrews was elected President, and Mr. W. H. Zouch Secretary.

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Ashburton Guardian, Ashburton Guardian, Volume 2, Issue 266, 11 February 1881

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Ashburton Guardian Ashburton Guardian, Volume 2, Issue 266, 11 February 1881

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