LOCAL AND GENERAL.
The American millionaire, Mr Mackay presented bis daughter, the PrinoessGolonna, with £10,000 ss a New Year's gift. The Italian Government have given Krupp orders for 100 heavy guns, and are buying 4000 horses m Hungary for the army. There are m the United States no fewer than €63 manufactories of patent medioines, of whioh 108 are m the State of New York alone. The Very Bey. Dean Jaoobs haß resigned the arohdeaoonship of Chriatohurob. The bishop has promoted Bey Groasdaile Bowen to the dignity. After seventeen 'attempts the Borough of Biverton have again failed m obtaining a candidate for the Mayoral ohair. The Ashburton Rifles, Guards, and Cadets are to parade at the Drillshed, m review order, on Friday next at 10.30 a.m., when the oustomary feu de joie will be fired m honor of her Most Graoious Majesty's birthday. * The steam fire engine, whioh the Borough Council ordered some time ago, arrived m Ashburton by last evening's train, and the engineer, Mr W E. Dolman, has been busy to-day m unpacking. Friday next, being the anniversary of her Majeßty T 8 birthday, will be observed as a Postal holiday. The Post and Telegraph Offioe will, however, be open from 9 till 10 m the morning and from 7 till 8 m the evening. Mails will be reooived and despatched by the morning trainß only. A case of strange illness is reported from Ujhely, m Hungary. A young girl had a fit of sneezing whioh seemed to be continuous. After sneezing for twenty-four hours, almost without interruption, the unfortunate girl was so exhausted that it was deoided to take her to Buda-Pesth, as the local dootora were unable to afford relief, A young man named Charles Penny was lost m the bush for three days last week between the Upper Hutt and Pahautanui. The onlj food be bad daring tbe three days was a wild pigeon, whioh he was fortunate enough to oatoir His olothes were almost torn to pieces m his efforts to make his way through the bußb, but beyond this he does not appear to have Buffered any ill effeots from his unpleasant experience. QOne of the " dime " museums of Cbioago exhibits a Bnake's skin bearing this legend; — " Skin of the serpent that tempted Eve m the Garden of Paradise. It was killed by Adam the foilowing day after the treason. Adam hit it with a club, of which traoes are still left. This skin was part of the inheritanoe of Adam, and was preserved m his family m Asia. The genuineness is attested by the dootora of divinity whose seals are attached." A meeting of the Committee formed, to promote the oarrying out of the resolutions of the reoent public meeting m favor of a weekly half-holiday was held laßt evening at the premises of the Zealandia Boot Company, the Bey E. A. Soon m the ohair. The subcommittee, appointed to oanvaßs the various tradesmen, handed m their report, whioh was of a very encouraging nature, all those interviewed so far, with two exceptions, having consented to olobo on Wednesday afternoons. A Committee consisting of Messrs Soott, Harrison, and Crisp were appointed to complete the canvass, and report to an adjourned meeting to be held on Thursday evening. The large nugget mentioned m our telegrams the other day as havitfg been discovered at Wedderburn, Victoria, was, it appears, found m the alluvial at a plaoe known as Hughes' Dam, 'Possum Point, near the township. The luoky finder is an Austrian named Costa Clovioh. The nugget was on view at the meeting of the Korongshire Council, and was subsequently lodged at the Bank of Australasia. It weighs 3360z, and is valued at £1360. It was found by a young single man who recently arrived from Austria. The discovery has created quite a furore of excitement m the township, as the lead appears to be a distinct one, and is likely to be traced from the vioinity of tbe old workings m entirely new ground, whioh has been pegged off for a long distanoe. We are glad to notioe that steps have been taken to form a Debating Society m Ashburton for the coming winter. Suoh societies tend to the improvement of the mind intellectually and help the members to become good public speakers. Two preliminary meetings have been held. On Friday evening last at the Templar Hall there was a good attendance, when it was resolved that the sooiety be named the "Ashburton Literary and Debating Sooiety," and that it meet on every alternate Friday evening at tbe Templar Hall at 8 p.m. sharp. The proposed byelaws and ruleß were read over and after sundry alterations were adopted. A epeoial meeting is to be held to-rdorfow (Wednesday) evening at 8. p.m. sharp at Gamble's rooms, when the eleotiop of ofHoers will take places and persons desirous ,of becoming member' are requested to attend. The subscription is not expected to exceed gs fid per member for the year. The problem of aerial navigation may now be regarded as solved, unless very misleading accounts have been published of the performanoes of an air ship whioh has been invented by a Brooklyn jeweller named Peter O. Campbell. The air ship is a balloon and a flying machine combined. The gas bag is cigar shaped, sixty feet long and forty two inohos m greatest diameter, and is filled with hydrogen Mr J. K. Allen, the aeronaut who first wont up m it, declares the machine is perfeotly navigable m moderately calm weather. He found it possible not only to steer a course but to rise and fall at will; and before starting on hi« voyage he asoended to » netaht'djl 500 feet and the» without difficulty defended to his original position, juet I to shpw how completely 1 the ship was udder control. The propelling and Btparjjing machinery is worked by eleotrioii,y. Mr Campbell's invention has already made so deep an impression that a company has been formed witb a capital of £20,000 to bring the airship before the notioe of the public— M CrsbbH'b Journal." The temperance ranks m the United States are divided into two camps, the one embvaoina the advopptes of Prohibition and tbe otbep the supporters of High Incense. Qf the reßulta of the adpotlon of the latter principle tfca following extraot from the •• New York Tribune •• j* March 27th affords a striking example.—" The oity C! - T oU©t, m Iljfooia, ia the latest shining example of the wisdom 523 e^eotjveness of High License. Seven years ago it had I2f saloons for a population of 15,000 and tbe license feetf, being 25d018f son, amounted to 3175d015. Under tbe High License law the fee was raised to lOOOdols. This dosed more than one-half the saloons leaving only fifty-five . The largely increased tax they pay supports the polioe, the firemen, all the Qity offioers and the cost; of lighting and oleaning the Btreetii. Havipg now a population of about 30,000 the people of the town are considering the advisability of raising tho fee to the enormous figure of SOOOdol, This would they believo, out down the number of Baloonß to fifteen, while at the same timo increasing the total revenue." — ('•' Wapganui Ghroniole.")
! The " Bullentin " is responsible or tht I following : — Maorilanders are reProaohed , , with laok of energy m prospeoting for the' preoiouß metals, bat there are great natural obetaoles m the way. At Featheraton (N.Z,), recently a prospeoting association was formed and Meßßia Marßh and Tidswell were solemnly Bent forth into the wilderness to bore for gold, or coal, or diamonds, or other collateral securities. They have since presented a report. The obataolea alluded to were encountered almost at once, when a misguided ball ohased Messrs Marsh and Tidswell up a tree. Marsh asoended first. He attained the altitude of seven feet and hung on to a bit of loose bark, Tidswell hung on to the slaok of Marsh's pants. The bull grouped itself around and waited. The bit of barlf : and the seat of Marsh's trousers gave way simultaneously, and the prospectors fell upon the bull, returning immediately to Featherstone to write the report, whenoe these incidents are extracted. After refitting, they went out again, meeting — to judge from the looal penny dreadful — with ampler suooesa, for we learn that they found " a quantity of . mullooky rooks and iron pirates whioh ! glittered like diamonds." In these days of universal shoddy, of leaden bayonets; and tin swords, it is positively rofreshing to meet with ! an iron pirate, j The " corner " m sisal whioh has oaused an enormous demand for New Zealand flax m America is referred to as follows by the "St Louis Republio " :— " A gigantio trust, whioh will probably oost the people of Amerioa about 20,000,000d01s this year, has been formed m the raw materials from whioh binding twine, rope and cordage are manufactured. It is a combination of 32 Eastern manufacturers of binder twine for the purpose of cornering' and controlling the raw materials oat of whioh twine, roping and cordage are made. They have bought up all the eieal fibre m the world, and all of the manilla fibre obtainable ,the two fibres being the raw material from whioh these artioleß are made. Manilla fibre is grown only m the Philippine Islands, and sisal fibre onlj m Yuoatan and m one or two other portions of Mexico. The trußt has a capital of from 15,000,000 to 20,000,000d018, and bo far has successfully carried out its aim. Ropes and cordage have advanoed m the past three months about 4 cents per pound and are advancing. No man knows to what prioe the trust will raise them. Daring the year 1889 it has the power m its own hands, the country will be squeezed for several millions on rope and cordage. All that the oountry oan do, for the present at least, ia to dance to the muaio of the National Cordage Company or go without rope, cordage and twine*"
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