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Insurance Dividend. —The National Insurance Company of New Zealand has declared an interim dividend and bonus to the olst of March last, at the rate of 20 per cent, per annum. The Duke of Sutherland. The Titnaru Harbor Board appointed a committee yesterday to make inquiries as to the seaworthiness of the barque Duke of Sutherland, recently wrecked there, as it was stated by certain members her limbers were rotten,

Hinds Pound. —Mrs Woodley has been temporarily appointed poundkeeper at the Hinds.

Gorse Cutting Machine. —A public trial of Hornsby’s gorse cutting machine takes place on Mr Mayson’s farm, South Rakaia, on Tuesday, 16th inst. To Farmers. —Our farming readers are referred to an announcement of Messrs Roberts, Paxton and Co., with reference to advances on growing crops, and other matters of interest.

Mount Somers. —A public meeting of ratepayers, Mount Somers district, will be held at the Road Board Office, Mount Somers, on Thursday, May 25, at 3 p. m., to consider closing an unused road. Cheap Photography. —The proprietors of the American Gem Studio are offering special inducements to the public of Ashburton to “secure the shadow before the substance fades,” particulars of which will be found in the usual column.

James Mace. The ex-pugilist left Auckland yesterday for Wellington, where he will stay for a short season. He then proceeds to Christchurch and Dunedin, giving statuesque performances, &c., at these cities, after which he proceeds to Melbourne.

A Brace of Lunatics. —in Auckland telegram under yesterday’s date states that at midnight a lunatic named Wm. Steel was discovered on a roof of a house in Vincent street. In endeavoring to escape from the police, he jumped to the roof of the next house, falling headlong to the street. Another lunatic (Travers) at the same time surrendered to the police, Travers had L3OO in his position.

Coals, Coals. —lt will be observed from an intimation elsewhere that Mr Alphous Hayes, the enterprising timber and firewood merchant, has added the coal business to his already extensive trade. With the possibilities of,a severe winter before us—a contingency which amateur astronomers and weather-wise folks prognosticate—Mr Collins, the manager at the Ashburton yards, may anticipate a brisk time.

The Woodstock Rush. The Times correspondent telegraphs from Hokitika yesterday as follows : —I am informed that a claim on the Woodstock rush was bottomed yesterday with four feet of washdirt, and from six to eight grains to the dish. An hour before bottoming one of the partners sold his share for Ll 5. My informant, a well-known storekeeper here, was on the rush at the time. (The above indicated yield would represent an approximate value ot L 8 per load.) A Collision. —The Upper Hutt train yesterday morning ran into a trolly at Petone. The force of the collision smashed the trolly into atoms, and was the means of throwing the engine off the line, and it eventually capsized. Two trucks were also thrown off the lino. The passengers by the train wore somewhat shaken and frightened, but nothing serious occurred. The driver and stoker escaped by a miracle, only receiving alight bruises, but the guard received a severe shaking. After a short delay traffic was resumed. Affiliation Case. —At the Auckland Police Court yesterday, a curious point of law cropped up in an affiliation case. John Hopkins, half-caste, was charged with a breach of the Destitute Peisons Act, 1877, by refusing to support his three illegitimate children, the mother of whom was a Maori woman named Tunahu. Mr Cooper appeared for the defendant, and submitted that the Act did not apply to persons of the native race. In this case the father was a half-caste and the mother was a Maori. He quoted various Acts in support of his contention. His Worship, after considering the Acts quoted, upheld the objection, and dismissed the information.

The Stanmore Seat. —lt is stated by the Were Zealand Times to be the intention of Mr Pilliet, the elected but unseated member for Stanmore, to insist on taking his seat in the House of Representatives on the session being opened. The Acts under which he was unseated provide no means of giving effect to the decision in the case of a new Parliament, because there is no Speaker to whom the Judge’s decision can bo reported, as required by the Election Petitions Act. If he takes the oath prior to the election of Speaker, it is contended that the subsequent reporting to the Speaker of the Judge’s decision unseating him will not have the effect of ousting him. At all events he means, it is alleged, to try the question, and the Parliamentary authorities are considering how the case shall be dealt with. Ashburton Cheese and Butter Factory.—The Secretary to the Cheese and Butter Factory Company received by the last San Francisco mail a letter from Mr Bowron, intimating that ho has succeeded in engaging two highly eligible married couples, and also a single man, “ the son of tlio best cheesemaker in all Somerset.” One of these couples and the single man are intended for our own Cheese and Butter Factory, the other couple go to the Lincoln Agricultural College, the College having empowered Mr Bowron, before lie sailed for Home, to procure for it a couple of practical hands. Mr Bowron adds that he was about to inspect some of the very best machinery, etc , for the manufacture of Cheddar cheese, with a view to the selection for the factory of the necessary “ fixings.” Mr Bowron leaves England for New Zealand in July next, and hopes to arrive in time to personally superintend the fitting up of the factory and sscin g it fairly underweigh.

A Rotten Borough. —An inquiry into certain alleged irregularities in connection with the roll of the Bay of Islands and Mongolia! Electoral Districts, and also a charge of political partisanship against Mr Kelly, Clerk of the Court of Mongonui, was held on Wednesday at the Bay of Islands, by Von Stunner and Mr Clendon, R. M.’s, by order of the Government, at the request of Mr R. 11. Hobbs, member for the district. The Court sat from 2 o’clock on Wednesday afternoon until three o’clock yesterday morning, with only one hour’s intermission for refreshments. The evidence is very voluminous and will all be forwarded to Wellington with a report of the Commissioners. The case has created great interest. Mr Hobbs stated he had asked for this inquiry in fulfilment of a promise he made at Ilia recent candidature, and he was determined, whilst lie represented, the district. ho would endeavor to wipe out the stain which has been attached in the past as that of being a rotten borough.

The New Licensing Act. The much talked of new Licensing Act is rather rough on bi-weekly and tri-weekly newspapers, for it deprived them of much profitable advertising. The 50;h section of the Act says : “ Every person who shall desire to obtain a license under this Act —not being a packet or wholesale or conditional license, at least twenty-one days before he shall make his application —shall deliver to the clerk of the Licens ing Committee of the Licensing District wherein the premises to which such license is intended to apply, are situate, and not later than as aforesaid affixing on the outer door or front of the principal entrance door of the said premises, there to be kept until the day upon which the licensing meeting shall be hidden, and publish on three consecutive days in a newspaper circulating in a place wherein the premises are situate, a notice in writing, signed by such applicant, setting forth the applicant’s name, abode, addition, and such desire.” Thus it will be seen that, in order to comply with this Act, it is necessary to publish in a daily paper for in no other, of course, can these announcements bo advertised on consecutive days. The Act is quite clear on this point,

Section for Sale. —A centrally situated section of land, corner of St. Asapl. and Durham streets, Christchurch, is for sale cheap. See advt. Poultry, Pigeons, and Canaries. We are informed that a number of splendidly bred fowls are about to bo imported by a local resident, who is at the same time a lot of choice canaries. Mr Bowron also, we understand, purposes bringing out with him a few dozens of fancy pigeons. These additions to our live stock will prove very valuable to breeders.

The Smallest Police Force in Britain. —The inhabitants of the Shetland Islands must be a law abiding people, as the total police force in the island consists of two constables, who respectively hold the title of county superintendent and burgh superintendent, while in addition to his police duties, the latter gentleman also acts as burgh fiscal, burgh officer, and officer of the burgh, and landward schojl board. By the last census, the population of the islands was 29,404, thus giving each policeman charge of nearly 15,000 people. This county is the only one in Scotland that is not under the County Police Act.

Illegitimacy in the Colonies. —Illegitimacy in the Australian colonies is steadily on the increase, as shown by Mr Hayter’s statistics in the Victoria Year Book for 1830-81. The following is the proportion of illegitimate births to every 100 children born during 1880 : —Victoria, 4.86; New South Wales, 4 51; Queensland, 4‘31 ; and New Zealand, 2 30. The mean rate for eight years in New Zealand is only I'B7 ; while in New South Wales it is 417. The ratio of increase is less in New Zealand than in any of the other colonies compared. The rate, even in Victoria, is less than that prevailing in the United Kingdom, the following being the figures for the various divisions of the country for a period of eight years : England and Wales, 5 0; Scotland, 8 8; Ireland, 2‘4.

For. the Use of Editors. —Our new patent outraged-feeling trap has been successfully completed (says a contemporary), and can now be seen in working order at this office. It consists of a perfect steeltrap warranted to hold a bear, and concealed from sight by an elegant Turkish rug. The moment a supervisor, a contractor, or quack doctor enters our sanctum or demands reparation and retraction for an article that has gored and cut his feelings, the visitor in question by merely touching a spring, is clamped round the arms and legs with strong steel springs, in which condition ho is lowered to the ground floor, carefully chloroformed and handed over to the regular policeman to be booked as a drunk. We find this method far preferable to beating a man over the head with a club, as it saves washing up and cleaning the carpets, and staining the office club with hair and blood and things.

Poplvh Dye.—A beautiful golden yellow dye is now prepared from the young wood of various poplars. The young branches and shoots are cut off, crushed and brayed, and then boiled in alum water in the proportion of ton pounds of wood and one pound of powdered alum to three gallons of water. The liquor is boiled from twenty minutes to half an hour, and then filtered. In cooling it thickens and clears, throwing down a greenish-yellow deposit of resinous matter. When sufficiently clear the liquor is again filtered, and then left exposed to the air for three or more days, according to the weather and the atmosphere. It quickly oxidises under the action of light and air, and assumes a rich golden tint, and in this state can be used for dyeing fabrics of all descriptions. For yellow and orange-yel-low shades it is used alone ; mixed with Prussian blue it gives green ; with oak bark, brown and tan ; with cochineal, etc , orange and scarlet shades. The coloring thus produced is said to be of superior quality.

Early Marriages in America.—The San Francisco correspondent of the New Zealand Herald says :—“ It is the fashion for women to marry very young in some parts of this over-free country. I know many ladies who were wed at fourteen, and even thirteen, years, which I consider' a very disgusting state of affairs. But so it is. However, they generally tie themselves to old men, or, at least, to men many years their senior. Several exceptions to this general rule have cropped up lately. A boy of fifteen has recently married a girl of thirteen. They took another boy and his father into their plans, when a clergyman was sent for, who made them one flesh for the small sum of a dollar and a half, which the groom had in his jacket pocket. Now, can you imagine anything more reprehensible than an ordained clergyman committing an act that is almost a sin for so small a sum as the above I How dare he do it, any way—married two little children, and he a man with a family ! Well, there is another case in point, where a girl of fourteen has had two husbands. She was married at eleven, and divorced from the first man to marry her stepfather. The march of intellect goes on with rapid strides, truly, and there is no accounting for tastes.

Library Committee. —The ordinary monthly meeting of this Committee was held last evening. Present—Messrs Ward St. Hill, Douglas (Hon. Sec.) Zouch, Branson, Crisp, and Lechner. On the motion of Mr Zouch, seconded by Mr St. Hill, it was resolved to approve of the resolutions passed at the late public meeting re Library site. It was also resolved to appoint Messrs Ward and Zouch as a deputation to wait upon the Borough Council at the mooting on Monday next, to ask to have the title of Reserve No.— vested in the Committee for the Public Library. Mr Jackson attended and submitted the ground and elevation plans of the proposed building, which were approved of, and it was decided that the working drawings, and specifications be at once proceeded with. The list of books selected by Messrs Ward and Douglas was submitted. A few alterations were made, after which it was decided to forward the order and remittance to Mudie’a per first outgoing mail. The list includes about 500 volumes of standard, works, and the binding is to consist chiefly of strong roan. Mr 'Douglas suggested, and it was resolved that Mr Crisp be authorised to bring the Ashburton Library under the “ Public Libraries Act.” The question of finance was considered at some length, and it was decided to hold a series of entertainments and concerts during the winter months, in order to raise a sufficient sum to complete the Library building, fittings, etc., and the purchase of books. After passing some small accounts for payment, the meeting adjourned.

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Bibliographic details

Ashburton Guardian, Ashburton Guardian, Volume III, Issue 634, 12 May 1882

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Ashburton Guardian Ashburton Guardian, Volume III, Issue 634, 12 May 1882

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