The nugget found at Wedderburn (Victoria) weighed 3360z, and is valued at L 1,360. It was found by a young single mau, a recent arrival from Austria. The New South Wales Legislative Council, by 16 to 13, rejected a Bill to provide that the verdict of a majority of a jury should be taken in criminal cases.
A peculiar accident happened to a man named William Morrison yesterday morning. He was seated near the end of one of the tramcars, when the axle broke and crushed through the woodwork, jamming his legs by the knees to the bottom part of the seat. He waß extricated with some difficulty, and conveyed to his home, when it was found that his legs were slightly crushed near the knees.
In connection with the complaints that the childrens' ward at the Wellington Hospital was likely to be converted into a " baby farm " the following resolution recommended by the medical staff was carried by the hospital trustees :—" The honorary staff having considered the question are of opinion that the limit of age should be fixed at two years instead of three years, and also that exemption might be made in cases of extreme urgency on the recommendation of any one member of the honorary staff."
In answer to inquiries from numerous readers (says the Wellington ' Post') wb may state that it is not usual for the Government to enforce the penalty of L 4 per hour provided for delay in the delivery of the direct mails in cases where the cause of detention is clearly unavoidable. There is a clause in the contract reserving to the PostmasterGeneral the discretionary power of remitting the penalty when the delay manifestly arises from accident against which the contracting company could not have provided. It has not yet been decided what action shall be taken in reference to the homeward mails by the lonic, which will be eleven day 3 behindhand in reaching London, on account of the return of the vessel and their transfer to the other routes.
The Survey Department was some little time ago authorised to take on thirty unemployed for clearing and forming roads at Catlin River. It will be remembered that the required number of hands were engaged, but only twenty of these put in an appearance at the appointed time. Eight or ten other men were subsequently sent up, but about the same number have resigned, and there are at present only twenty-four men at this work. The department now has room for half a dozen married men. The work at which the unemployed were at first engaged was of such a nature as to suit only those who were used to the bush, but the hands now to be taken on require no qualification other than ability to use the pick, shovel, and wheelbarrow. We understand that some of those who profess to be anxious for the work complain that they are paid according to results, but thi3 will not be a grievance with those who really desire to keep the wolf from the door during winter. Tents and tools are provided by the Government, and we believe that an industrious man can earn 49 6d per day. Provisions are at about the same rates as in town.
Admiral D. D. Porter, of the United States Navy, is reported to have said, apropos of the Samoan difficulty, that in sixty days he could improvise a fleet and set about destroying German commerce. But a British admiral, whose opinion was asked on this point, has proved (remarks our London correspondent) that Germany is quite able to retaliate, as her mercantile marine contains double the number of steamers that the American does, besides being of greater speed. In the matter of armed cruisers, when Germany's present naval scheme is completed she will have twenty-eight vessels, and America nineteen, but six of them will be faster than any in the German fleet. The guns in American ships abroad are pronounced by the British expert to be mostly of an antiquated type, while German ships are said to be armed with modern Krupps. In regard to ironclads, the United States possessed eighteen obsolete vessels, without having a single available seagoing battleship. Germany has, on the other hand, twenty-five ironclads, of which twelve are for coast defence, three are obsolete, and ten compose a fighting fleet, which is well armed and armored. The superiority at sea therefore rests with the Germane, and their advantage is mhanced by the extent of the United States coast line. The interest of the two Powers, which would be jeopardised at sea in the event of war, are not very unequal, amounting in the case of the United States to L 271,000,000, and in that of Germany to L 293,000,000. These interests comprise steamers and sailing ships, and imports and exports in course of transit.
At Melbourne on the 9fch inst. Walter Brooks, a commission agent, attempted to murder Mrs Matilda Thomson, a married woman, and failing to do so he shot himself in the head. Mrs Thomson had kept house for him. He was an insurance agent, but having lost his position through drink he was unable to afford to keep a housekeeper, and Mrs Thomson, who had acted in that capacity for him, went to live with one of her owngrown-upsons. Brookß wentto the house on the morning of the 9th and fired two shots through the keyhole of the door. He then entered by the back, and found Mrs Thomson alone. He forced her on the floor, and said: "I am going to blow your brains out first, and then shoot myself." The landlady, attracted by the shots, knocked at the door. Brooks told Mrs Thomson to answer, and say that all was right. Under that pretext she managed to open the door and escape. A shot was then heard in the house. The police, having entered the place, found Brooks lying across a bed quite dead, having been shot through the mouth. In one hand there was a revolver, while in the other hand he held a letter detailing his relations with the woman, and his determination to commit murder and suicide. He asserted that he loved the woman better than his soul, and prayed God to help him to complete the murder suicide. He said he was married to her in the sight of God, but she denieß there were improper relations between them.
A special session of the Chriatchurch Diocesan Synod was opened yesterday afternoon to consider the present position of the property tax question, and of property under ''■"* management of the church property trustee and the Diocesan Board of Trustees, and the past, present, and future administration thereof.
The report of the New South Wales Department of Public Instruction for last year shows that 2,237 schools were in operation at the end of the year, with accommodation for 181,357 children. The statutory school population is 212,774, or an increase since the last census in 1881 of 44 per cent. There are 186,692 pupils, and of these 151,504, or 81.2 per cent., of statutory age attended school, the records of attendance showing a satisfactory improvement. The percentage of pupils in average attendance, 69.7 per cent,, was higher than in any previous year. The total expenditure was 11 hi less per pupil in average attendance than for the previous year. It is stated that the expenditure per pupil the year's enrolment is less than in Victoria or Queensland, and a decrease on all previous years.
A meeting of the St. Kilda Borough Council was held last night; present—the Mayor (Mr J. Stenhouse), Crs Mitchell, Gore, Skipworth, Allan, Caddie, and Hi'gginßon. The Caversham Borough Council wrote forwarding an account for L 5 2s 7d for the maintenance of Forbury road. It was decided that the account stand over for a fortnight.—The inspector reported regarding the cleansing and repairing of mud tanks and attending to the outfall of the borough drains, and he suggested repairing new footpath formations with coke ashes instead of bluestone screenings; and also called attention to the fact that clay was being removed from the St. Kilda side of the Forbury road by the Caversham Council. It was resolved that the clerk write to the C&versham Council to prevent the taking of the clay.—The inspector was instructed to report at next meeting the probable cost of making drains and filling in ditch in front of Mr Mitchell's property, Musselburgh, a distance of about 4$ chains. On March 30 the cablegrams stated that the ' Contemporary Review' for April contained an article by the Rev. Dr Dale, expressing an opinion that " secular schools make the work of the churches easier." The actual text of the article is:— '* I have a serious conviction that on the whole religious teaching given in ordinary day-schools lessens, instead oi increasing, the influence of religious truth on the life of a community, and that secular schools make the work of the churches easier." Dr Dale goes on to state :—" If I were an enemy of the Christian faith, and an unscrupulous enemy, I should endeavor to persuade every growing colony to establish and to endow Anglicanism, Presbyterianism, Methodism —any one of them would answer my purpose ; and I should also recommend the adoption of an educational system which provided that grants should be given to denominational schools, and that teachers in State schools should be required to teach religion."
The Committee of the Dunedin Horticultural Society held . meeting in the Y.W.C.A. Rooms ! ast evening. There were present Messrs P. M'Gregor (in the chair), Gordon, Matthews. Reade, Moodie, Dick, Scott, Burnside, Kernplin, Clarke, Howden, and Black (secretary). A letter was received from the Exhibition Commissioners intimating that they agreed to the terms proposed by the society for bliows in the Exhibition building, except that tickets would be limited to members only. The letter was received, and it was resolved that the Exhibition shows be held on the 20th and 2lßt December and the 9th and 10th March. Prize money and accounts amounting to L 32 3s 4d were passed for payment. It was decided that the secretary of the Beekeepers' Association be asked to state more definitely what was required in the matter of amalgamation. Messrs Dick, Howden, and Thomson were appointed a Schedule Committee.
The charges of larceny preferred against Auckland volunteers in connection with the Easter encampment were heard yesterday, before Mr J. S. Clendon, R.M. William Thornton, a member of the Waitemata Naval corp3, was charged with having Btoleu a jar of brandy from Porter's Hotel, Mercer, on the night of the 18th ult., when the train proceeding to Hamilton with volunteers "stopped at Mercer. Mr T. Cotter appeared for the accused. The evidence in this case went to show that the jar was stolen in the mette. at the hotel ; but a number of witnesses were called to show that Thornton had received the jar from two other men who had brought it to the train. The case was therefore dismissed. Wil'iam Costello, of the Onehunga Navals, and T. Butler, Waitemata Navals, were charged with the theft of an accordion from Porter's Hotel. Mr Brassey, who appeared for the men, submitted that the instrument produced in Court was not identified by witnesses for the prosecution, and on this ground the prisoners in this case were also discharged. Mr Gale, ex-Governor of Puntridge, the big Victorian gaol, says:—"A reformed prisoner ! I have never in my thirty-eight years' experience ever seen one. If a man is sent to gaol and does net come up again, Ido not call him a reformed criminal. But if a man who is an hereditary criminal, end has been in gaol a number of times, turns to honest pursuits, that would be reformation ; but I have never seen one of those yet. As a means of reformation I regard gaols as positively useless. As means of punishment they are all right; as reformatories their effect is nil. Once a man gets into gaol he is lost, to all intents and purposes. He is led away by others. Habitual criminals talk about crime and laugh at it, and then weak-minded associates are soon led into the same grooves. No doubt crime is a kind of moral insanity. If it were not, how do you account for the same men coming back again and again to gaol ? They work for less food and for less rations than they get outside. Yet they prefer to do so rather than to earn an honest living. Thero must be something wrong with them in some way."
The letter of paternal advice which Dickens addressed to his youngest son on the eve of his departure for Australit is worth recalling just now when that son has risen to be a prosperous colonist and a member of the Parliament of the parent colony. It is given in full at page 445 of the third volume of John Forster s ' Life.' Here is an extract: —" It is my comfort and my sincere conviction that you are going to try the life for which you are best fitted. I think its freedom and wildness more suited to you than any experiment in a study or office would have been. Try to do to others as you would have them do to you, and do not be discouraged if they fail somefines. It is much better for you that they should fail in obeying the greatest rule laid down by our Saviour than that you should. I put a New Testament among your books for the very same reasons and with the very same hopes that made me write an easy account of it for you when you were a little child—because it is the best book that ever was or will be known in the world, and because it teaches you the best lessons by which any human creature who tries to be truthful and faithful to duty can possibly be guided." Sunday observance is (says the' Freeman's' New York correspondent) being much discussed. Mr Shepard, who owns a New York paper, and who is a Christian philanthopist, recently addressed the Baptist ministers in New York on the subject. His views are radical, but very wholesome. It is time that some pastor said just this :—" For the purpose of carrying lazy Christians to church about 10,000 men engaged on the railroads in this city were compelled to work on Sunday, and the pastors were greatly to blame for this wrong. The members of churches should attend the services near where they reside, so that they can walk to church. The publishing and reading of Sunday newspapers should be stopped, and would be if pastors would advise their congregations not to read them, and not to advertise in them." The ministers of all denominations in Indianapolis unite in stopping the desecration of the day whenever it is possible to do so. The President of the United States sets an excellent example. Mr Harrison has already shown his mind in the course he has pursued as to this matter in Washington. It is said that he will not even open his secular mail on Sunday. His action will do incalculable service to the pause of Sunday observance.
The farmers of Waitahuna carried this resolution at a meeting; held on Saturday to consider district ana general matters:— " That this meeting is strongly of opinion that the continuance of a subsidy by the Government to the San Francisco mail service is inimical to the best interests of the colony." The Eastern Extension Telegraph Company have received a telegram from the British Consulate at Shanghai, which states that the Chinese famine fund has been closed, that the prospects of the harvest are good, and that it is not considered needful to receive further aid from abroad. A movement which was started at Wellington for the relief of the supposed distress has therefore been discontinued.
A truly mpdeßt libel action was that brought by Mr James Scott (who contested the Maldon seat at the recent Victorian general election) against Mr J. Burnaby, a restaurant-keeper, from whom he claimed L 49 damages. The alleged libel was that, at a meetiDg of the plaintiffs committee, after the election had taken place, the defendant said that the plaintiff stolo his neighbor's fowls, and that the plaintiff and his wife went to bed drunk every night. The plaintiff conducted his own case, and the defendant also appeared in person. The defence was that Burnaby did not actually say the words alleged, and that what he did say was that other people said them. Judge Worthington thought the defendant was not justified in making the remarks complained of; but at the same time it was a haphazard statement, and could not injure the plaintiff much. He therefore awarded plaintiff L 4 damages ; costs to be taxed.
The attention of Anderson Bay residents is directed to the notifications re Thursday evening's meeting. Annual meeting of the District Grand Lodge, E.G., to-monow evening.
Wakari Rifles parade at Roslyn Council Chambers on Friday next.
The amount of Mr De Maus's tender for photographing in connection with the Exhibition was L 125. It is the intention of the members of the Dunedin Bowling Club to play a general rink match on the Dunedin green on Friday, to close the season. As the ground is in first-rate order, the game should be a very enjoyable one.
We are glad to hear that there is some pnwpest of MrSantley, thefamous English baritone, whose concerts in Adelaide and Melbourne have caused a genuine furore, paying a visit to Dunedin a couple of months hence, with bis specially selected company. The project is in capital hands, and if the music-loving portion of the community back it up with anything like alacrity it may be taken for granted that we sliall be afforded an opportunity of listening to the grandest exponent of ' Elijah' the world has seen.
Court St. Andrew's, No, 6,127, A.O.R, held their usual fortnightly meeting in Edinburgh Castle Hotel, Caversham, on Monday evening, O.K. Bro. W. Dunn presiding. There was a good mußter of visitors and member?. The business having been disposed of satisfactorily, the remainder of the evening was most enjoyably spent by the capital rendering of soogs and readings. C.R. Bro. Dnnn gave the health of the visitors, which was responded to by P.O.R. Bro. R. Ingram and Sec. Bro. W. Woodlands on behalf of Courts Pride of Dunedin and Enterprise. One member was initiated.
The members and friends of the Independent Congregationalists held a very enjoyable social entertainment in the church, Ravensbourno, last evening, Rev. A. H. Wallace, pastor of the Great King street Church, presiding. Addresses, readings, and recitations were given by Messrs Sankey, Adams, Jack, and Graham. The choir rendered several pleasing anthems, and solos were givon by the Misses Fanny Palmer and Jack and Mr Taylor. During the evening the ladies provided coffee and refreshments. Votes of thanks to the chairman and friends, proposed by Mr Russell, concluded the evening's meeting.
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Evening Star, Evening Star, Issue 7913, 22 May 1889
Evening Star Evening Star, Issue 7913, 22 May 1889
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