AUSTRALIAN NEWS ITEMS.
Mr William Holden, a veteran member of the literary staff of the ' South Australian Register,' and the oldest journalist in Australasia, being in his 90th year, sustained a severe shaking eighteen months ago through being knocked down by a cab, and never recovered and died recently. Aln the New South Wales Legislative Council Mr Garran said the aggregate unimproved value of land in New South Wales was approximately £121,000,000. Information as to the aggregate of the mortgages on landed property was not available, but the aggregate amount of interest on such mortgages was approximately £1,600,000.
At Ballarat a man who was found guilty of passing valueless cheques was set free on the sureties of bondsmen that he would come up for sentence when called upon. Not long ago, at one of the suburban courts of Ballarat, the mother of a large family waß sentenced to twelve months' imprisonment on a charae of stealing a pound of butter.
Ernest Baih and H. S. Edgar arrived in Adelaide on the loth inst., having ridden on bicycles from Mount Magnet, in the Murchison district, West Australia, a dißtanoe of about 1,950 mile's, They left Mount Magnet on- 15th September, and tho whole journey took twenty-nine days, and of the total the riding days numbered twenty-three, the average being eighty-six mile 3 per day. Bails lives at Mannum, South Australia, and Edgar at Harrow, Victoria. They stated that they preferred riding from the West to going by steamer, and will proceed to their homes next week.
Probate amounting to £25,55G haa been paid upon the will of the late Captain Charle3 Smith, formerly merchant of Sydney. The value of the estate has not been disclosed officially, but it is believed to be about £500,000. On the 15th inst. a lad named Albert Harding was riding at a fair pace in Carlton, when, just as he was about to turn a corner, hb noticed a lorry, and, pulling round Bharply to avoid it, his machine skidded or sideslipped, and he was thrown upon the roadway under one of the two horses. The horse jumped with fright, and kicked the lad, and then before anything could be done to save him the wheels of the lorry passed over his ohest and throat, crushing his life out of him instantaneously. The tyres of the machine, when examined subsequently, were found rather slaok, and the terrible accident may serve to emphasise the advice alwaya tendered to riders in city streets, where machines have to be picked up suddenly to avoid surprises in truffle—" Keep the 1 yreß bbwn'up as hard aB possible. They are lies liable to side slip." Albert Rowell Nixon being brought up for sentence in the Adelaide Criminal Court for stabbing bia wib in the office of Hill Addison, chairman of the State Bank, prisoner's counsel said that his client bad requested him to explain that he committed the act under gross provocation, and that be lost control'of himself. Mr Justice Boucaut said he did not believe prisoner was overcome by emotion ; he was only acting. The law did not allow men wronged as prisoner had been to go about committing assassinations. If this were allowed" for one crime it would have to be allowed for others, and then people would be going about with revolvers and shooting each other in the streets. With infinite pain he had heard hisses in the gallery during the speech of the Crown Solicitor. He had intended to clear the court if this had been repeated. He would not be overawed by the gallery or allow the jury or counsel to bo overawed. His Honor then sentenced Nixon to eighteen months' hard labor. Mr E. L. Zox, the member for P]a3t Melbourne, is seldom at a loss for a witty remark, observes the ' Argus,' but even he has to acknowledge that occasionally circumstances arise which temporarily drive all the humor out of him. An example of this was furnished the other night. Standing in the great crowd which thronged Collins street, and watching the posting of election returns, he was in the best of humor, because of his own success and the success of his friends. But someone asked him what was the time, and he discovered that his watch, valued at £SO, had disappeared. He was so astonished at this evidence of the expertness of pickpockets that he forgot his customary joke, and his first remark was perilously near being clothed in strong language. An organisation which claims to come well out of the Victorian elections is the National Scripture Education League. Mr W. Wishart says that out of the ninety-five members returned forty-two are fully pledged to the League's platform. In addition to these there are fifteen others who are pledged with certain reservations, but might be safely counted in on general grounds. Of these fifteen two will not vote for anything which would result in the withdrawal of Roman Catholic children from the Bchools. The forty-two described as fully pledged are in favor of Scripture reading as part of the curriculum, with a conscience clause. Again, out of the fifteen new members returned ten are fully pledged to Scriptural education. Few members of the Melbourne police force were more widely known than Sergeant Flannery, who for more than a quarter' of a century had charge of the Flinders street railway station, so far as police arrangements were concerned, and there was general regret at the news that he had hanged himself on the 11th inst. The discovery of his death was made the next morning, when one of his son? calling to ask whether the station-
master knew why he, had nob been home on the previous' night led to a search. Then the body, stiff and cold, was found hanging in the-private box which served him for an office. An examination showed that the deed had been done with considerable determination. The office is only Bft in height. In the ceiling ia a ventilator. This had been broken, .and. through the hole had been : inserted. ah iron bar to serve as; a beam. Round this he had bound a rope, which was attached to Mb neck. It was not long enough to Buspend him, and as there was a chair beside the body it was evident he had' used this to keep his feet from the floor, so that he could throw the weight of his body upon his neck. The determination necessary to strangle himself in these circumstances is apparent.
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AUSTRALIAN NEWS ITEMS., Evening Star, Issue 10454, 26 October 1897