| From Odr Own Correspondent.]
Wherever you go you are always made aware of the fact that Dunedin takes the palm for having the severest and wettest climate of any place in New Zealand. In the severity I concur, but as to the rain your province is "not in it" this year at any rate. It has been raining almost constantly in Auckland for the last five months. The farmers are complaining bitterly that their crops are severely injured, and I am given to understand that many of them will be considerable losers through rot having attacked the potatoes. A case of extreme hardship in connection with the selling of land by a local body (says the ' Herald'} has been represented to us, and if the facts are as represented the wrong ought to be redressed at once. From that journal it appears that a widow, now in Auckland, holds a piece of land consisting of some eighty or ninety acres in Matakohe. For some time, some years ago, the rates were in arrears, but they were subsequently all paid up, and the owner holds the receipt of the local body. She now finds that on the 15th September, 1884, a portion of the land, consisting of ten acres, was sold for LlO by the County Council, although she holds the receipts of that body for the rates on the whole eighty acres for that very year. That portion of the land contained some fine kauri, which was no doubt the reason why it was put up and sold, The owner in this case is not in a position to embark in litigation, but it surely will be exceedingly unfortunate if she has to put up with robbery because she cannot take proceedings to get her wrong redressed.
Te Kooti is paying a visit to Auckland for the purpose of consulting Mr Napier respecting his late arrest at Opotiki. It is Mr Napier's intention to move in the Supreme Court to set aside the order to make Te Kooti find sureties. The chief's visit, it is said, is to give evidence and make the necessary affidavits, when Mr Napier will move in banco as soon as the necessary papers are prepared. Monsieur J. Foureur, a French gentleman who has long been connected with the wine industry of South Australia, arrived in Auckland recently. M, Foureur owns an estate at Whangarei, and being of opinion that the northern districts of Auckland are eminently suited for wine culture he purposes shortly to settle on his estate and establish a vineyard and wine manufactory. M. Foureur secured first prize for champagne at the Paris Exhibition.
Dunedin should emulate the example set by Auckland in having a fruit and fish market—a boon which has been sadly needed in the past, but which is now fairly started and bids fair to be an unqualified success. The complaint of the fishermen has always been that there was not sufficient outlet for their fish, the consequence being that much of that article of diet was rendered useless, the retailers only taking sufficient quantities to enable them to keep the price at a high figure. That is all past now, and instead of the fishermen having to depend on retailers for the disposal of their fish, they now have a real market with a paid auctioneer, who at the recent sales has got the highest market value for that article. Captain Ruthe, the manager of the market, is to be congratulated on the high figures obtained recently, the average price being no less than 5s 4d per dozen. This satisfactory result will no doubt have a great effect in popularising the market with the fishermen.
The great Maori abduction case has at last been brought to a conclusion. I stated in my previous notes that too much had been made out of it, but the poor Natives have to " pay the piper." I don't think I am far wrong in stating that Inspector Broham was too hasty in issuing his orders for the arrest of the Maoris in connection with this case. There was not the slightest necessity to charter a steamer with a posse of constables to take by surprise the offenders, whose whereabouts at the time of the abduction were as well known here as the locality of the island of Tiri. However, the " foorcc " must do something for show ; and as the larrikin element has been at a standstill lately, hence the much ado about nothiug. Had the authorities waited for the advertised time of the steamer's sailing the expedition would have cost very little, and the girl would have been restored to her father long before the vessel arrived, the Maoris having decided on this plan before they were arrested, and all further trouble would have ended. But the law of the land had been broken, and as there has been nothing of an exciting character in this province lately we thought that we would be able to bring this part of the colony into prominence by a second Parihaka farce, which, however, did not come off, and the bubble has burst After all, it seems a shabby way of disposing of the case by mulcting the Maoris in the costs of a too hasty piece of business on the part of the "powers that be," with the additional punishment of four of them having to find sureties of LSO to keep the peace for six months. Of course there would have been a hubbub had the case been dismissed, as it should have been, and the eccentricities of the guardians of the peace would probably have been brought more prominently before the public. The general opinion here is that the Maoris have been harshly treated, and that Hourangi should have been placed in the dock instead, as it waß through his unprovoked assault on Mrs Thomson (a Maori woman) that all the trouble arose.
In all probability the Ellis steamer Jubilee will not make Auckland a port of call either going to or from Sydney, This, I understand, is partly owing to the meagre support accorded tio her owners since they have been running in opposition to the U.S.S. Company. The former's steamers have in the past received a large share of encouragement from Lyttelton and Wellington, and it is their intention, no doubt, to ply between these ports and Sydney, with a trip now and then further south. It is rumored that the Ellis Company are negotiating for a couple of new steamers, which are to take the place of the Centennial. The Auckland foojiball team arrived laot week after their tour in fche s6uth, but were not welcomed in the customary manner on their arrival, there being hardly half a dozen of their friends to meet them. Great expectations were anticipated from their first match; in fact it was freely stated that their tour would be nothing but a series of victories till they set foot again on their own soil. Great, however, was their disappointment, for, as your readers are aware, they returned with a score of only a couple or three wins, and these were played against teams who, aocording to the speoial correspondents of the looal papers, were unacquainted with the game. Well, there is certainly not much credit in that, but it is satisfactory to know the why and wherefore of their non-success in the big matches, the " specials'" reports supplying a rare amount of amusing reading, which for unsophisticated "blow" and absurdities could not be surpassed. Your boys were " lucky in! making their match a "draw, and should have been beaten." The Christchuroh "team won their match through not knowing the new rules of the Rugby Union, and were, therefore, guilty of unfair practices," etc.; while the " Wellington matoh was lost solely on account of the heavy state of the ground." (N.B.—The Wellington team, I suppose, played on different soil.) However, it is gratifying to see the amount of kudos bestowed on their efforts with the Nelsonites, who put into the field a team of players who did not know the common rudiments of the game in fact,' played in a manner entirely foreign j to the rules' of tjie I|.ugby Union. But j "our boys" taught them "a lesson and gavel them a sound thrashing which will be*the j means of making them study the game a ] little more, and it was admitted by everyone ' that it was " the grandest game of football j ever witnessed in the Nelson province"! To tell the truth, from an Auckland point of view the Auckland team were never beaten on their merits, but the demon " luok " was always against them, and there (says one "speaial") must have been a Jonah in the team to cause them siich "Hard nozzle." , Comment is needless.
The flax industry appears to be progressing favorably, geyerajnew mil} B haying been started up here lately; and (fc must be gratifying to those interested in Its development that large quantities of that article have been and continue to be exported. The barque Alice, whioh sailed for New York
last week, took 900 bales from the North Island alone, while the Largo Bay, which is to sail for London in a few days, has also a large cargo, which it is to be hoped will realise satisfactory prices to the shippers. There is a danger, however, that the markets will be glutted with this commodity, as it is still coming in in abundance from the various districts of this island.
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AUCKLAND NOTES., Evening Star, Issue 8036, 12 October 1889, Supplement