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The Press. THURSDAY, OCTOBER 24, 1867.

By the August mail we have the first official notice, or indeed public notice of any kind, that has been taken in England of the scheme of postal services between Great Britain and the Australasian colonies recommended by

the intercolonial Conference. A ques tiou on the subject was put in the House of Lords on the 12th of August by the Earl of Carnarvon, ex-Secretary of State for the Colonies, to the Duke |of Buckingham, the present Secretary. \ Unfortunately the customary notice of the question had not been given, and the Duke of Buckingham, having had no opportunity of consulting with the Postmaster-General, was not able to give any particular information, beyond suggesting several -other points which must also be considered in connection 'with the proposals from the colonies, and which would require some time and some conference between different departments before any decision could be arrived at. His reply was in substance that the subject was a large and important one, and would receive the very fullest consideration of the Government. That is not very much, but it is probably all that his Grace was in a position to say. The truth is that the time has been unpropiiious. There have been too many changes in the Cabinet for progress to be made in a matter requiring prolonged attention; and besides that, for two sessions running neither the Government nor the Legislature has had time or thought for any but one subject. TheKeform Billhas thoroughly stopped the way. Now, however, that that allabsorbing measure has been fairly got through, and with a lesult that leaves reason to hope it will be long before any further reform will be found necessary, other matters which have been-in abeyance will come in for their turn, and among others this of postal communication with the Australasian colonies is too important not to receive early and careful attention.

The tone of the brief discussion we have referred to in the House of Lords was on the whole encouraging, though the.remarks of the Colonial Secretary point to a probability of great delay before anything is finally settled. Lord Carnarvon, in expressing bis hope that the question would " receive the,consideration which was due to its own importance, and also to the feelings generally of the Australian colouies," reminded their Lordships " that a vast increase had taken place in the exports and imports of those colonies, and in fact during the last few years there had been an enormous development of their material resources. Corresponding jvith that there had been, so to speak, a raising of the standard of intelligence, education, and in fact everything which made frequent and rapid communication between this country and those colonies a matter of very great importance. The single monthly postal communication which had hitherto satisfied the wants of the Australian colonies was clearly inadequate to the requirements of their present condition." Ou these grounds he hoped the subject would receive at the hands of the Government " that attention which its great importance demanded." In the course of his reply, the Duke of Buckingham stated his opiuion chat the' Australian colonies "had now attained a magnitude when postal commuuication with them became of greaHmportance, not merely as connected with England, but in relation to almost every other part of the globe, and particularly to China, India, and America;" and that " the questions they had raised were certainly such as deserved very serious consideration before the proposals were rejected or materially modified." He also threw out a suggestion that the colonies would do well to

consider whether in some cases a reduction of the rates of postage was not a point of more importance than the multiplication of the number of routes. The largely increased expense to the Home Government of the colonial scheme is, as was- to be expected, an obstacle to its adoption. Lord Carnarvon, referring to the proposal to divide the cost of maintaining the three lines of communication between the Imperial and the Colonial Governments, declared that "he did not wish to recommend the increased expense which such a subsidy would entail; on the contrary, he saw many strong and reasonable objections to it." This opposition is the more remarkable because it was at his own invitation that the colonies undertook the task of arranging for postal communication between England and Australia, and on his promise that the Imperial Government should contribute'half the cost. * That offer, it is true, referred only to a single line, whereas the scheme of the Conference proposes to maintain three separate lines, and increases the subsidy of the English Government from £70,000 to £200,000. In answer to the objection of Lord Carnarvon, the Duke of Buckingham only remarked that there were other considerations mixed up with the question besides the expense of communication, and repeated his assurances that the Government were fully alive to the importance which was to be attached "to the proper adjustment and extension of the present system."

Tie main difficulty, and the point on which the scheme is in danger of breaking down, lies in the quarrel between New South V.\.ie* and Victoria over the possession of the terminus of the Suez line: According to the original scheme all three lines were to terminate at Sydney ; so at least the New South Wales delegates maintain, though the representatives of Victoria seem to have understood that the point was left open. The strongest opposition has been raised in Victoria to this arrangement, and matters have gone so far that the Government of that colony, finding the Sydney Government unwilling to admit the claim of Melbourne to be the terminus of the Suez route, gave notice of their intention to retire from the scheme altogether. Since then however both parties have somewhat modified their determination.. We find from the Argus of the 2nd inst. that in reply to a question put to him iv the Legislative Assembly, Mr. M'Culloch, the Chief Secretary of Victoria, said that "he had entered into communication with the New South Wales Government on the subject of the terminus of the Suez route, and made it a condition of this colony continuing to act with the other colonies in the matter that tho question should be left entirely open to be dealt with by the Federal Council. In the first instance the New South Wales Government objected to doing so, but on a further communication they had agreed to leave the whole matter to be finally dealt with by the general Federal Council." Such then is the state of the case at present. Unless New South Wales' or Victoria gives way on this question the plan must be abandoned, for there is little chance of the Home Government agreeing to contribute its moiety of the cost to an arrangement which does not include all the colonies. The Federal Council, whenever it meets, may perhaps be able to accommodate matters; but it is plain that that can only be done by a spirit of mutual concession and an inclination to think less of individual interest than of the common good, of which the members of the Conference set an admirable example, but in which two of the contracting parties have since shown themselves lamentably deficient.

Band of Hope.—On Monday last a Band , of Hope meeting took place at Woodend, I when, after several addresses had been delivered, fifteen names were added to the already numerous list of members. Cbicket Match. —The first match of the season will be played to-day on the ground of the TJ.CC.C.,-between that and the Albion Club. Wickets will be pitched at ten a m., at which hour the players of each team are requested to be on the ground. A lunch will be provided at mid-day by Mr Ruddenk'au. Atlantic Telegraph Company.—Another accident has occurred to the IBti6 cable ; and the preliminary experiments show that the interruption has occurred at a point about filty miles distant from Heart's Content. The chairman of tho Anglo-Amencan Company -tates that this indicates a very moderate depth of water, and thereby speedy restoration at small cost. '-,•'' Aht Union. —The drawing for the prizeß at. Mr W. B. Jones's Art Union took place last evening at Morton's hotel. The number of subscribers was 100, and the prizes consisted of oil and water-colour paintings, and photographs of various sizes Mr Joynt was elected chairman, and Messrs McLean and Luckie icted a* scrutineers, the tickets being drawn by two of Mr Morton's children. The arrangements seemed to give varj general satisfaction, the only drawback being that the prizes were not arranged in numerical order, and when a prize was drawn the owner of the number had sometimes to traverse the whole room to find out his award. Excursion. —Yesterday ' the members of the City Council and their friends were invited, by one of their number, 'Mr.. John Anderson, to an excursion down the river in the little steamer Maid of the Avon. The company left about ten a.m , and -the boat steamed down to the cutting, where the passengers were landed, and proceeded to the seabeach, where foot races and other sports were entered into by some of the members. An adjournment then took place for refreshment, which was supplied by Mr Ruddenklau. \ capital spread was laid out, to which ample justice was done. The company then reembarked, but on the way home a stoppage took place at Mr Peter Kerr's residence, where several toasts were proposed and duly honoured. The boat reached home/about seven p.m.. The excursion was a most pleasant one, and the day one of the finest of the present spring. Cantgbbuhy Quoit Clitb.—A meeting of gentlemen interested in the formation of a quoit club was held last evening at Coker's hotel, Mr B. P. Crosbie in the chair. It was stated that the nucleus of a club had already been formed, and the subscriptions for several members pais, -out of which the necessary materials had been bought, and a portion of Coker's gardens laid down, at which place it was proposed to.hold the meetings of the club. It was then decided that a quoit club, to be named the Canterbury Quoit Club, should at once be formed. The following officers were, then elected —Secretary, Mr Death; treasurer and custodian, Mr Coker ; committee, Messrs Locke, Turner, Post, and the treasurer and secretary. The committee were empowered to draw up a draft of the proposed rules, to be submitted at the next general meeting. Arrangements were made for a match to take place on Saturday afternoon next, and the meeting separated. No. 2 Company CSV.—Several members of this company proceeded to Hillsborough yesterday, under the command of Lieutenant Blakiston, to compete for prizes, consisting of three silver cups given by tho company. The conditions were that the prizes should be won twice by the samo competitor; the ranges w. re 200, 300, and 400 yards, and five shots were allowed at each. A strong northeasterly wind was blowing across the range, and rendered the shooting rather uncertain. From the following scores it will be seen that Ensign Papprill obtained the hjghest number of points:—

iName. o t o £ o s- ~ M <S M £ -<T< a o . P-! H Lieutenant Blakiston ... 10 10 6 28 Ensign Pappriil 16 9 16 41 Corporal Gree 13 8 4 25 Private Niemann ... 15 \l3 9 37 Private Maddison ...'l3 7 10 30 Private Hobson ! 15 jl3 ' 9 87 Private Ritchie ... x ... : 91 7 7 23 This was only the first of a series of company matches, and another competition wiH take place shortly.

■&XKZ. Shortly before twelve o'clock last night an alarm' of fire was given from the city bell. At the Fire Brigade station nothng was known as to thi< locality, but it was supposed to be in tho vicinity of St. Luke's cl'iiroh. No. 2 engine, with a full complement of men, turned out, but after goim* as fir as Colombo street bridge turned hick, as no signs of a fire could be seen. A very narrow escape from what might have been a very serious fin; however had occurred Some" of the shingles on the roof of St. Luke's school-room were observed by a passer-by to be on fire, and he immediafely run to the station to give the alarm Another person following him, w;th the aid of a few buckets of water, succeeded in putting the fire out Only about a yard of the roof of the building has been destroyed. The Brigade turned out very promptly, and a deta-hment of police were on the ground within a very few minutes of the alarm being given ; several members of the fire police were also present. The new fire-bell did uot last evening act very satisfactorily; probably the way in which it was rung was the cause. The system adopted in Victoria of having a distinct manner of ringing for each quarter of the town might with advantage be idopted here. Last . night the police, fire police, and others had all to meet at the station to make enquiries as to where the fire was supposed to be.

Hokitika.—The polling for the election of mayor of Hokitika for the ensuing twelve months took place on Monday last; Messrs Shaw, Button, and Prosser were tho three candidates for tho office. The " West Const rimes" thus describes the, election :—For the first hour, and indeed until nearly noon, the polling proceeded but langui lly, although from an early hour the friends of the-three candidates were out in various directions hunting up voteus. Each candidate had a vehicle drawn by two slashing horses at his disposal, and bearing appropriate mottoes. Mr Shaw's motto was—"Shaw and the Westland County Bill." Mr Prosser rejoiced in—"Vote for E. Prosser, our mayor, tha first representative of Westland ;" whilst Mr Button, with that peculiar modesty which is bo becoming in a youthful aspirant to Municipal honours, contented himself with —"Vote for C. E. Button!" At noon the fun begun to thicken, although it rather received a damper which then set in and continued until the state of the poll was declared. Betting, too, was the order of the day, and odds were freely offered and taken on the several candidates. Meanwhile the hours sped on. The crowd in front of the Municipal Council Chambers kept on increasing, chaff and good humoured badinage prevailed ; voters kept coming in, until at four o'clock the dosing of the Council Chamber announced the closing of the poll. Still the crowd kept on increasing, '.until from the platform in front of the. Municipal Chambers to the other side of Revell street was one dense sea of heads. A little before six o'clock, the mayor, J. A. Bonar, Esq., who acted as returning officer, gave the official declaration of the poll as follows:—Shaw, 205; Button, 193 ; 'and Prober, 130. He therefore declared Mr Shaw duly elected mayor of Hokitika. Tho candidates returned thanks, and three cheers for the retiring mayor terminated the proceedings.

Quinine Alb. —The following brief notice of the combination of quinine and ale in the production of bitter beer is from Morgan's trade circular:—British wines have so long been used as agreeable media for quinine, that we wonder some one did not sooner extend the principle by rendering bitter ale a palatable cure by the same process. Such an article has, however, now been brought out by Messrs Lewis, Arnett and Company, of Manchester street, W. They have made a combination of the finest bitter ale and quinine, in the proportion of one -grain of the latter to an imperial pint of the former. Under Arnett's novel label we now have all the pleasant qualities of sparkling pale ale, and the medical qualities of quinine, Without the presence of the latter being at all perceptible to the palate. Those who are compelled to take either bitter ale or quinine as a tonic will rejoice at the combination of the two. The " British Medical Journal" no'ices the quinine ale in very flattering terms. It refers to the idea of making bitter beer a vehicle for quinine as a happy one, and the result as the production of a beverage which has all the qualities of the highest class of bitter beer, and which is notsurpassed, if it be equalled, in flavour and quality by the best ales of Allsopp or Bass. It is a pure, \yell-made, and palatable tonic ; and those who are not acquainted with the fact that it owes part of the "bitter" quality to quinine instead of excess of hops, could only remark it ■- for. the excellence of its flavour. The difficulty of mixing the quinine without interfering with the appearance of the ale has been fully overcome. Tins will render the ale a valuable one for export purposes, for merchants who send such beverages abroad prefer to select those that thej can rely upon for their keeping qualities. Some has already been shipped to several hot countries, where malaria or other fevers can only be successfully combated with quinine.

The Auckland GrOLDFiELTia.—A Northern paper of a recent date says : —The intelligence received almost daily from the Thames continues to be of the most saii-factory kind as regards the richness of the quartz reefs ; and the great want now felt is additional machinery of sufficient power; From day to day new reefs are being discovered, and with an adequate supply of labour, capital, and machinery the result would be such, no doubt, as to convince the most sceptical of the almost inexhaustible mine of wealth lying at our feet. Tk. is much to be regretted that the efforts made to solve the important question whether or no alluvial gold exists in paying quantities have not been seconded to the extent anticipated. Twenty-four men have been engaged in sinking two prospecting shafts on Karaka flat for some time .past, giving their time and labour in return for rations and timber. They are now down eighty feet'withjout bottoming, and it is) to be feared that thfe work will come to an end for want of means to carry it but. The storekeepers on the ground have been so far the supporters of the men at work, and it was expected that a sum of £250 or thereabouts would have been raised in Auck : land, but so far ouly £25 has been subscribed, arid the public meeting called at Mr Cochrane's rooms to promote the object in view has apparently lapsed altogether. Mr Cochrane himself went to Coromandel on Tuesday to superintend the removal of the machinery of one of the companies there to the so well satisfied is that gentleman with the look of things at the latter place. It if now estimated that there are about 2000 people on the ground, and about half that number of miners' rights taken out. Four or five public: houses, two or jhree restaurants, and other places of business have been established at Shortland Town, and it speaks well for the orderly character of the inhabitants that'aa yet two policemen only are stationed at the Thames, and have as yet formed a sufficient force.

Akaroa ajs t d Waintji Eoad Boabd.—A meeting wa3 held in the Survey-office on Monday last. Members present — Messrs Waeckerle (chairman), Saxtoh, Piper, Garwood, and the Engineer. The minutes of thef last meeting were -read and confirmed. A hitter was deceived from the Secretary far' Public Works relative to the' erection of a public pound at Akaroa. It was proposed by Mr Garwood, and seconded by Mr Piper, that the above letter be replied to, titating that now the Eoad Board are in funds the work will immediately ba put in hand. Carried. It was decided that tenders should be invited for the erection of a public pound, to be iv accordance with the plan and specifications furnished by the engineer. A letter was received from the Secretary for Public Works, 6tating that the Government had apportioned to; the AkOroa and Wainui District, in addition to the £150 already granted, the stun of £sOo,*an application for winch in the u«u»l form would be duly attended to. The Chairman was requested to reply.to the above letter, enclosing the usual requisition. A letter was received from the Springs Eoad Board, requesting to be informed whether

this Board would bo inclined to cot.*,, , with them in endeavouring to oh, P at? permanent endowment for t\" 80ai « the outlying districts. Tho n,"'- 0 of was requested to reply to the above?!?* 1 *t.»tirj K that the Board would b„ h ""• furnish them with any inforumtion, a,K l ° them any assistance that lav in .1 l,ri - The following tenders wU strueimg a bridge over tho n . C0!1 " -ek: r W.Pen. I ng,on,SsTh"r;V ton, £75; K. W. Morcv, £86 ? "W" Barwiek, £115 9s. Engineer's „•; V J " !la The tender of Vrilli.nrSlding m ;:i £ ; h °- work in mx weeks from present ' ? ° ' h9 sum of £f,S, was accepts The r °- th » was instructed to prepare a p] nn om | S* tvon for repaying the Beach road in P n chelle Bay, and invito tenders f or £*"*: work, to bo sent in on or before \r! f' d November 4 The meeting then adi V » titOlondav, November 4 adjoUrt^

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The Press. THURSDAY, OCTOBER 24, 1867., Press, Volume XII, Issue 1549, 24 October 1867

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The Press. THURSDAY, OCTOBER 24, 1867. Press, Volume XII, Issue 1549, 24 October 1867

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