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BACK FROM AMERICA., Issue 7911, 20 May 1889
BACK FROM AMERICA.
HOW NEW ZEALANDERS HAVE FARED.
A Wellington citizen, named Taylor, who returned from America by the Zealandia, in conversation with an Auckland ' Star' reporter, gave somerather startling information regarding the condition of working people in that great centre of population, more especially as it affected a large number of New Zealanders who went there in the hope of bettering themselves. Mr Taylor went to California to see whether he could do any business in the lumber trade, and he has returned disappointed. He found that it was not possible to do more than little or nothing owing to the far-reach-ing influence of syndicates and trusts. Moreover, he says, there was very little doing. He saw 200 New Zealanders who had emigrated from this colony because of the dull times, and every man of them wished himself safely back to the Britain of the South. Unfortunately their luck had been so bad that few of the number could obtain the wherewithal by which to pay their passages. Two young fellows who held farms at Whangarei, and sold them to try their fortune in America, also came back by the Zealandia, only too pleased to be once more in New Zealand. The Auckland 'Star's' informant mentioned another instance, in which a Canterbury gentleman, who had been vainly endeavoring to court the goddess of Fortune under the Stars and Stripes for nine years, had returned to his Southern home.
In Los Angeles, he says, there were 4,000 unemployed people walking about thesti eets, and the Salvation Army were doing a most necessary relief work there. The Army had large tents erected, and were receiving donations and dispensing aid as far as possible. They provided beds for 300 or 400 people every night, and gave them some food also. One New Zealander who left this colony with L 6.000 had tried his luck in New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles, and is now Btranded at the last-named place without a cent. Mr Taylor came across seven painters who went from New Zealand during last year, and not one of whom had been able to find work. In San Francisco men were walking about idle in thousands. He saw more poverty there than he had ever seen in New Zealand, and met fully 200 New Zealanders who wished themselves back borne. A Wellington man, who gave up a billet worth L2QO a year to go to America, was found walking about in a destitute con : dition, and another young man, very well connected in this colony, was living on charity. Mr Taylor says that almost the whole of the passengers by the Zealandia are New Zealanders who have been disappointed, and that those who remain across the water are cursing the day when they left these shores. The working hours are ten per day, and Sunday is no day of rest. In Los Angeles there is no Sunday observance. During Mr Taylor's stay there there was, he says, scarcely a day in which a suicile was not recorded. He advises New Zealand workmen, and especially carpenters and painters, to remain where they are. Soft goods men are also wise to remain here, for many of their fellows who went to Amerioa with saloon tickets would now be only too glad to sorape up enough money for a steerage return, Germans and Chinese, Mr Taylor says, Seem to do a great deal of the work, and the Europeans have a very ! bad time generally.
BACK FROM AMERICA., Issue 7911, 20 May 1889
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