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A clause m the Comities Amendment Bill enables county councils to stop glove fights. A Norwegian engineer has invented o machine which can pack one thousand boxee of matches m a minute. The French Government propose to lay a telephone cable between London and Paris. Books are being reproduced m America from photography, tints evading the Bill which allows of a copyright only m books printed from type, A very elaborate return was recently presented to the House on the motion of Major Steward, showing m detail all sums paid to every Minister of the Crown m New Zealand during the last 21 years. Tho (-Jisborne Harbour Board threatens default m payment of interest m .September, unless tho sinking fund already paid on the unexpended sum m hand be released. It contends that the fact of £84,000 m hand, the spending of which Parliament has prohibited, is itself sufficient cover for loan, without further payment of sinking fund,

j t ci (].( results of the late meeting m ipfii <1 the newspaper proprietors ' < 11 nt tie Press Association will make ■'iigonerlp f or procuring much fuller innnrl t° nregardiDg the Australilu» produce

Letters from places beyond the colony addressed as follows, were received at the Ashburton Post Office during tho month of May, and are still lying unclaimed :--Mrs Sh: p teV <King 'DrW-G'R°SS 'Chaß-

Application far relief was received by the Auckland Charitable Aid Board from E. Harrow, proprietor of the Lake Takapuna ttotel. I lie visiting officer reported that he had learned that Harrow was one of the wealthiest men m the Lake District. His freehold property was rated at £4640, and he had refused £5000 case for it a short time ago. iha officer failed to find that there was any mortgage on the property. In Louisville, Kentucky, the tram cars are utilised for sprinkling the streets, the tramway company having a contract with the corporation. Each car has a perforated pipe •r hose along its «id c> and as the cur travels the water is spurted to either side of tha track. It is reckoned that 1800 gal. are thus rained from each car while it runs through six miles of street. B

A Presbyterian church m Melbourne, it is reported, has introduced some innovations into its services, which, although happily blending patriotism and piety, would startle the sober-minded Scotchman at home. The ohoir composed of gentlemen wearing the Highland kilt the girls attired m the co. tume of the Lady of the Lake, sing their hymns of praise to the music of the bagpipes. These '< original facts "have naturally proved a great "draw," and the ingenious parson who contrived them has his reward m greatly enlarged congregations.

Victor Rolla a professional aeronaut, lost his life near Stockholm recently while attempting a parachute feat. The lalloou rose rapidly and carried the aeronaut away seaZ u'a ?n b°dy wasfou"d six miles away. He had fallen into the sea and had been drowned. The deceased had made two previous attempts. In the first he had fallen .into the gardens, nearly killing himself, and m the second lie was only saved from drowning by means of a lifebelt. The sum for which he risked, and eventually lost his life, was barely £3.

Mr Cecil Raikes does not take a very hopeful view of the financial prospects of the postal reductions which the Chancellor of the Exchequer has announced. He statai that as every letter for India or Australia carried fora postage of 2£d would involve a loss to double the amount of correspondence sent would only be to increase the loss, and if the same increase took place m conjunction with a penny postage the loss would be very largely augmented. Mi Heaton on the other hand, declares that there will be no loss, but a gain, on any increase of letters to India and Australia under tho now rate.

Mrs Sarah Jones, residing at New Duston, n«ar Northampton, recently died from tricycling. The deceased, who was 29 years of age, went for a short ride on a tandem tricycle with a Mr Johnston, and directly afterwards with aMr Ankett. Mr Anketc, nnding that she was fatigued, stopped the machine, and the lady got off, lay on the grass by the roadside, and expired without a sound m two or three minutes. Her medical attendant considered that the death was caused by syncope, and the jury at the inquest returned a verdict that death was caused from syncope, arising from over exertion and excitement caused by her riding a tricycle.

A contemporary remarks that amongst the the catch words, or time procures of the English Parliament, the most marked is Balfour s 'Very well Sir.' This he repeats constantly by way of marking his divisions, subdivisions, and the progress of his oratorical paragraphs. Sir Charles Russell's pet expression is ' Let that pass ;' Gladstone, when lie wnnts time, takes a drink ; Goschen clears his throat and Harcourt drags out a lone A-ah ! It is unkindly added that m the Australian Senates the three favourite phrases would seem to be—'Howsumever, as 1 wos asayiu', an I'll say it agin,' 'yeralmr !' and 'Gome outside an' do it;'

A good story is told by mi officer who recently travelled on the public service, which ■w mm i vn>-e <? bun tr,,mto. He sent m his account of travelling expenses with the entry of " i'orter Is." His accounts were returned with the remark that porter could not be allowed, but if the entry was intended for the conveyance of luggage, it should be noted as "poteragc." The alteration was duly made,, and a query added as to whether a cab should not be be entered as "cabbage." The reply vouchsafed was that the correspondence on the subject must cease.

The "Detroit Free Press" says :—American newspapers are constantly bewailiug the enormous burden imposed upon the German people by the maintenance of the standing »rmj of the empire. For the present year this will coat the German people sixty-one and three quarter million dollars. The United States will pay much more than this m pensions, and m addition will pay thirty will ion dollars fo rsustaining an army which would scarely stand against a single corps or two of German troops. Our old wars are costing us more than the maintenance of the peace of Europe costs Germany."..XvsL.*** *;

A public meeting was held last night m the Oddfellows' Hall—presided over by Mr Robert Alcorn—to hear an address by Mr T. W. (Clover, organising agent of the New Zealand Alliance. There was a very poor attendance, only thirty-five people, ydung and old, being present. The address— matter and manner—was m the style ;so peculiarly Mr Glover's own. In the course of his address he read a letter written by Mr W. C. Walker, M.H.R., m 1888, from Wellington to Mr Jameson, assuring him of the writer's intention to do all he could to support a Local Option Bill. Mr Glover, however, pointed out that on the 17th July, 1889, when a motion, given notice of by Mr Fulton, the member for Taieri, came on for discussion (and moved m Mr Fulton's absence by Mr Withy, the member for Newton) that the Government should bring m a Local Option Bill, Mr Walker was recorded m "Hansard" to have voted against the motion. The speaker urged upon Christian and teetotal people to withhold their votes at election time from members who were thus untrue to their promises. A resolution was carried unanimously urging upon (government the necessity for bringing m a Local Option Bill at once, and upon the member for the district the necessity for supporting it.

Efforts were made m Aahburton to-day to buy wheat at three shillings per bushel, but sellers were not to be found at the money. The Master of the Old Men's Home wishes to acknowledge, with thanks, the receipt of bims from Mr Grubb, and apples from a friend, for the use of the inmates.

Our Wellington correspondent telegraphs that ministers are determined that Mr Hutchison's accusations shall not go unchallenged, and that a Royal Commission will be appointed to make a thorough examination.

.The Mayor of Dunedin having referred imbeciles recently discharged from Seacliff asylum the Hon. Mr. Hislop says, Government will submit proposals to the House; if these are not approved the charge will remain on the local bodies, and if they refuse the Government will pay the necessary amount which will be stopped out of subsidy. ■***■ . ■

The following remarks of 'a gentleman m London, occurred m a lettei received by Mr. Batt-ley, just now on a visit to Wanganui as Inspector of the Loan and Mercantile Agency Company:—The meat market is illimitable. If New Zealand sent 5,000,000 instead of 2,000,000 sheep they would be absorbed. The only effort necessary would be to take a little care m not flooding the market, and the meat would all go intti consumption. The means distributing this mutton throughout the of United "Kingdom are increasing every day ; hundreds of new shops are being opened, and it is quite a popular article of food. Two hundred and fifty acres of land at Plumstead (England), which forty-five years ago were let for agricultural purposes at £3 per acre, p? a total of £750, have, owing to the exigencies of the workmen employed at Woolwich, Arsenal, been covered by houses built; by or at the expense of the men. During that period the ground-land-lord has received £1,000,000 m ground rents, and twenty years hence, on the falling-in of the .leases, he will become the absolute owner of the whole property, including the houses built by the workpeople, thus pocketing, say, another million.

A novel colonising idea is being put into practice m Victoria, by the Christian Socialists whose settlement has been established at Drouin, on the Gippsland line of railway, and comprises about 500 acres. A band of pioneers are engaged m the work of clearing; and it is hoped that before long thirty or forty more will be "well housed and ready for work m right good earnest." The land is divided into three departments, milk production, general agriculture, and to growing large and small fruits, vegetables, and a nursery. Suitable industries and factories will follow, but "not to seek to enter into competition with others as regards prices, the object being rather to solve m-vny of the otherwise difficult sayings of Christ."

The "pound for pound system" of Government subsidies has its weak points, as the following incident will show:—One of the shire councils of Victoria has been detected m a piece of sharp pratice m connection with the Government grant of pound for pound. By a stroke of the pen it increased the valuator's valuation of property within the shire from, say, £100,000 to £150,000. Property owners did not suffer, as a lower rate was struck, but the Government subsidy would be increased by from £5000 to £7000. In this ingenious way the Government was made to pay the interest due to it on money Advanced for waterworks out of its own Subsidy.

A case of considerable interest to medical men has just been recorded by a French surgeon. In January last a man, whilst temporarily demented, swallowed a teaspoon. Eighteen days afterwards he applied for relief at the hospital m consequence of the intense pain caused by the spoon. On exariiination externally nothing could be felt, and doubt was expressed whether, after all, anything abnormal had been swallowed. As, however, some pain was experienced when pressure was applied to the region of the stomach, the surgeon determined to investigate further. With this object m view he employed an electric exploring instrument. No .sooner had the letter passed into the stomach than the tinkle of an electric boll emphatically proved that a metallic substance had been struck by the exploring apparatus. The usual operation was then proceeded with, the teaspoon was found and extracted, and the patient left tho hospital at the end of two months perfectly convalescent.

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LOCAL AND GENERAL, Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2481, 2 August 1890

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LOCAL AND GENERAL Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2481, 2 August 1890

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