TOWN & COUNTRY.
ASHBURTON BOROUGH ' COUNCIL. The statutory annual meeting of the Ashburton Borough Council was held yesterday. The business was purely formal, and the balance-sheet was adopted. The Direct Mail.—The mail despatched yesterday by the R.M.S.S. Kaikoura consisted of forty-five bags, containing 15,93 S letters, 1021 book packages, 10,840 newspapers, and 392 registered letters. Local Option.—The local option vote for the Borough of Ashburton will be taken on May 29. As a coincidence, it may be mentioned that Mr R. T. Booth will lecture in Ashburton the same evening.
Truants.—The Ashburton School Committee have resolved to enforce the compulsory clauses of the Education Act against the parents of certain children whose attendances at school have been very irregular. Theatre Royal.—At the Theatre Eoyal, the Diorama of the Soudan War was again exhibited last night, and the distribution of gifts followed. The matinee, advertised for yesterday, did not take place. The season has yet a few more nights to run.
Breaches of Beer Duty Act.—Yesterday, F. Innes was fined £6O and nearly £0 costs, on two informations, for endeavouring to evade the payment of duty on beer brewed by him and removed by his orders in unstamped casks to his bottling establishment. A report of the case appears on another page. The Shirley Burning Case.—The sad affair at Shirley, reported in our issue of yesterday, has resulted in another death. Mr Briggs' youngest child, William Henry, who was severely burned about the legs and lower part of the body, became worse, yesterday afternoon, and died shortly after 4 o'clock. An inquest is to be held on the body. Weather Exchange.—New Zealand: Depression to south; winds westerly, and squally'; overcast and rain at Bluff. Australia: High pressure generally, with westerly winds, and fine, though rather squally at Hobart. Barometers —New Zealand : Russell, 30-0; Wellington, 296 j Bluff, 29-2. Australia : Hobart, 30-1; Portland, 30-2 ; Sydney, 3q-3. Belfast Freezing Works.—The contribution of the Belfast .Meat Freezing Works towards the cargo of the s.s. Kaikoura is 5131 carcases of mutton and 104 quarters of beef, the whole being on account of five shippers. Two hundred and four frozen sheep and six carcases of beef have been taken on board as ship's stores. The plans and specifications for the additions to the works are nearly completed, and tenders will shortly be called for the work. The Weather.—The barometric readings of this month are wonderfully in accordance with those of the corresponding period of last year, with the difference that the various changes are one day earlier. Last year, the conditions of yesterday were present on May 14, producing stormy weather. The barometer rose slightly on May 15, dropping again on the following day with a secondary storm. Thence to May 21 there was a slow and by no means uninterrupted rise ; and on May 24 there was another southward depression.
Kaiapoi Borough Council. The special annual meeting of the Kaiapoi Borough Council, convened for the purpose of passing the yearly accounts, was held on Tuesday evening: present—Councillors Wilson (Chairman), Hansen, Blakely, Stanton, and Anderson. The accounts, duly audited by Messrs Champion and Brooke, the Borough Auditors, were placed before the meeting, and on the motion of Councillor Hansen, seconded by Councillor Blakely, they were adopted and ordered to be published. The Auditors' remuneration was fixed at .£lO 10s for the ensuing year. The meeting then adjourned.
Rangiora Borough Council.—The annual statutory meeting of the Rangiora Borough Council was held on Tueaday night; present—The Mayor and Councillors Good, Cone, Nichoils and Stevens. The balance sheet, which was received and adopted, showed the r.'ivipts for the year to have amounted to £1335 Os 9d, and the expenditure to .£llBB lis 2d, being a credit balance of £146 9s 7d. The Auditors, , Messrs T. Ross and J. B. Wilson, certified to having found the books correct in every particular. A statement showing the estimated receipts and expenditure for the forthcoming year was laid on the table. The receipts were put down at .£1134 4s 4d, and the expenditure .£1282 Is 9d, leaving a deficiency of .£147 17s sd.
Parliamentary Association. About 50 members attended the weekly session of the above Association last evening. The ladies' gallery was fairly well filled, and there was a large attendance in the "strangers' gallery." A motion by the member for St Albans (Mr George Hart), having for its object the change of night of meeting from Wednesday to Saturday, was lost on a division by 23 votes to 14. The adjourned debate on the Address in Reply was resumed by the member for Coleridge (Mr W. P. Reeves) and continued during the whole of the evening. An amendment, censuring the Government for an unauthorised war expenditure, was negatived on a division by 19 to 16 votes. After transacting some business of a formal nature, the House adjourned.
Sudden Death.—Mr Thomas Beeson, a clerk in the employ of Messrs R. Walton and Co., auctioneers, died very suddenly at about a quarter to 11 o'clock yesterday morning. He was at work in his office when a clerk in the front room, hearing a strange gurgling noise, went in and found him sitting with his head resting on the desk. He was not then dead, but was unable to speak, and died in a few moments. Dr Cotterill was at once sent for, but when he arrived life was extinct. The deceased had for a considerable time been suffering from aneurism and heart disease. Indeed, two years ago his medical attendant, Dr Mickle,. told him to leave off work for a time if he wished to preserve his life. He was between 40 and 50 years of age, was married, and lived with his wife and one child on the North Belt. It is not deemed necessary to hold an inquest.
Legal Examinations. The law examiners for the Colony, Messrs T. S. Weston and Judge Seth Smith, have just concluded the examinations for March last. There were 31 candidates all told, consisting of three solicitors previously admitted, three candidates for admission as barristers, and 25 for admission as solicitors. Of that number, Mr A. G. Gover, of Auckland (previously admitted as a solicitor), Messrs Bathgate and Farnie, of Dunedin (Colonial students for the Bar), Messrs J. M. Killen, W. Kerr, O. Nicholson, R. Skeen, C. Z. Clayton, and J. G. Blyth, of Auckland, G. M. Louisson, of Christchurch, H. Humphries, of Napier, P. Macrae, of Dunedin, M. Macdonald and F. W. Skeet, of Gisborne, R. M'Callum, of Blenheim, and J. Anderson and P. Skerrett, of Wellington, have passed. The Christchurch Law Society's gold medal, for solicitors' papers, has been awarded to Mr P. W. Skeet, and the Society's two certificates of merit, for solicitors, to Messrs Louisson and Nicholson. The papers prepared by the holders of prizes were of a very superior character.
South Canterbury Amateur Athletic Club.—The fifteenth annual gathering of the above Club began yestez-day. The number of entries was largely in excess of last year's. .H. A: LeCren won the Ladies' Steeplechase, Mellish the Half-mile Race, and Pigeon the Two Mile Walking Kace. C. H. Hamilton was in great form, winning ihe 100 Yards, Quarter Mile, and 250 Yards, beating the formidable champion of earlier years, F. N. Robinson, in every event in which they met. Alleged Wife Murder. —An inquest was held yesterday at- Geraldine on the body of Hannah Trengrove, before Mr Baddeley. The evidence showed that although suffering from low fever, the wounds received had accelerated death. The husband, Charles Trengrove, who had been drinking lately, went home at night, and hit his wife with his fists. Of the jury of eighteen, sixteen were for a verdict of wilful murder against Charles Treagrove, and two against. The Coroner committed him for trial at the Supreme Court on a charge of wilful murder. Freethought Lectore.—The platform at the Oddfellows' Hall was occupied last evening by Dr York, a Freethought lecturer of some reputation, who visited Christchurch about a month previously. There was a large audience, and the lecturer was introduced by Mr F. C. Hall, who officiated as chairman. The subject of the lecture had been announced in the query " Science or Religion—which ?" and Dr York, who certainly has the gift of a forcible and telling style of delivery, coupled with a stentorian voice, kept the attention of his hearers, many of whom appeared to be in sympathy with him, throughout a two hours' lecture. His discourse was a tirade against all established forms of religion, and as he defined religion to be superstition, and argued that science and religion were diametrically opposed, it is not surprising that he pronounced in favour of the former. Industrial Exhibition Committee.— A meeting of the local Committee was held last night under the chairmanship of Mr E. H. Banks. Telegrams from Mr Callis were read (they have already been published). It was resolved to ask the following firms— Messrs Miles and Co., the Loan and Mercantile Company, R. Wilkin and Co., Dalgety and Co., the National Mortgage Company, and Matson and Co. — to meet a subcommittee for consultation as to the best method of exhibiting wool from Canterbury. Messrs Murphy andBanks were appointed the sub-Cominittee. Mr Howland reported that he had received a circular to the effect that exhibits could be received at any time from now till June 30. Dissatisfaction was expressed by the Committee that no communication had been received by them from Mr Callis, who apparently was ignoring the existence of the Committee. The Secretary was requested to write for a plan of the building, and all other information as to what is being done and as to who is to be appointed from Canterbury to look after the interests of the Canterbury exhibitors. Industrial Association. Last night the Committee of the Industrial Associa- j tion held an ordinary meeting; presentMessrs E. H. Banks (in the chair), J. Waller, A. G. Howland, T. Pavitt, F. Jenkins, G. T. Booth, E. C. Ashby, P. Duncan, M. Sandstein, R. Buchanan, and H. B. Kirk. The Chairman congratulated the Committee on the accession of Mr Booth. Mr Booth acknowledged the compliment. A letter was read from Mr Champion, accompanying samples of glassware manufactured from Kaiapoi glass sand. The letter was acknowledged. The Chairman stated that he had information that better glass sand could be found in the Chatham Islands than in any part of New Zealand./ A letter was read from Mr Corky, enclosing a subscription list for the Band. Rotunda, and pointing out that all the materials used would be of local producmittee had "? the purpose at its disposal.'' Mr -Howland reported the result of the to Mr Larnach, mentioned that the site permament building in connection with the Association was part of Archdeacon Paul's estate, having a frontage of 58ft to Caahel s'treet, by a depth of 192 ft, and with a right-of-way 10ft wide running through to Hereford street. Mr Larnach was willing that the Government should supplement the local subscriptions by £2 for £l. He (Mr Howland) had written, on behalf of the sub-Committee, to Mr Ballance, Minister of Lands, referring this gentleman to his colleague in Wellington, and urging that action should be taken at once. He read a copy of the letter. Messrs Pavitt and Kirk made additional explanations. The action of Messrs Howland, Pavitt, and Kirk was approved by the Committee, and they were authorised to take the necessary further action. This closed the business of the meeting.
The sub-Committee of St Johu Ambulance Association hold a meeting to receive report, &c., on Friday, at 4.15 p.m., at tne city Council Chambers. Mr E. Dobson will give his seventh lecture on " Building Construction" at Canterbury College this evening, at 8 o'clock. The annual meeting of the ratepayers of the Port Victoria Road Board district will be held at the Schoolhouse, Governor's Bay, to-day, at 12 o'clock. A meeting of the promoters and guarantors of the New Brighton Tramway takes place at the City Hotel this evening, at 7.80. The e>ghth ordinary general meeting of the shareholders of the Union Fire and Marine Insurance Compmy of New Zealand will be held in their offices, Hereford street, ou Tuesday, July 7, at 12 o'clock.
Nominations to fill the vacancy in the Drainage Board, caused by the resignation of Mr K. M. Clissold, for the sub-district of Riccarton, will be received by the Keturning-Officer at the Riccarton Road Board office, Fendalton, before noon on Friday, May 22. The election, if necessary, will take place on May 30.
A Russian View of Victoria.—The following remarks are attributed by a Melbourne trade journal to M. Schostak, a Eussian scientist, who lately visited Victoria :—" I arrived in Victoria a few weeks since, and although I expected a great deal from what I had read of Australia, ray expectations have already been realised in a fourfold sense. The grandeur of Melbourne is indeed a marvel; impossible that a city of such magnificence—one that has outstript many of the most important cities in Europe, and in some of its details not even the capitals can surpass it —could have been builb up in the space of a lifetime. I was particularly struck with the appearance of wealth betokened by the magnificent architecture, which to my mind is an undoubted evidence, not only of solid prosperity, but of the talent and enterprise of the inhabitants ; however, were anything further needed to corroborate the former, I should say that the great number of bankinghouses which adorn the city afford ample proof. After spending a few weeks in the capital, I went to Sandhurst, which seems in point of wealth to correspond with the metropolis, when the nature of its resources and population are taken into consideration."
A Melboubne Patriot's Mistake.— One effect of the war scare in the city (says the Melbourne Age of May 2) was made apparent yesterday in the City Police Court, where the Magistrates were called upon to deal with a man named John Egan, on a charge of assaulting John Negus. The complainant, who may be said to somewhat resemble a Eussian in appearance, was quietly walking along Elizabeth street on Thursday afternoon, when he was rudely assailed by Egan, who demanded to know "if he was a Eussian?" At the same moment the question was asked, and without waiting for a reply, Egan, who seemed greatly excited, hit Negus a savage blow in the face, loosening his teeth, and sending him staggering across the pavement. No provocation whatever was offered by the unfortunate man, who could not tell what to make of the furious assault on him. The first blow was followed up by a second, which knocked Negus backwards, and then Egan in a cowardly manner kicked him, and he would have done Negus considerable injury had I
not the bystanders interfered. While' thus pummelling his victim, who offered' no resistance, Egan shouted out "He is aRussian," which was in fact not thecase. The pugnacious fellow was then handed over to a constable, who, having 1 ." locked him up, presented him in dne course to the city Magistrates. Mr Call' told him his conduct deserved very severepunishment, and sent him to gaol for one r month, as he was unable to pay a fine of' £3, and 40s costs to the prosecutor. A Cheap Bargain.—A curious case of 1 domestic infelicity came before Mr Wardell, R.M., at Featherston on Wednesday? (says the Wairarapa Star). Mary Ann. Shirley summoned John Webber for assault. She complained that she had acted* as a wife to Webber for the last ten years,, but lately she got more kicks than ha'pence, and she wanted to get rid of him. Webber being asked the reason why, statedthat the woman was his property ; he had' bought her from her husband for ss, and he claimed the right to do with her as hethought proper. Mr Wardell refused to recognise the sale, and much to Webber's disgust ordered him to pay the cost of the proceedings (7s), and to abstain from, molesting Mrs Shirley for the future under pain of imprisonment.
A Parricide's Fate.—Even in China lynch law is resorted to. Just outside the west gate of Shanghai is a small hut where an old man and his son lived up to Nov. 13 last year. The son made it a practice of calling upon his father for cash, whenever he was in want of it, until the thing got rather monotonous for the father;, who remonstrated with his son, and beingr saucily replied to, the father attempted toapply " paternal correction " on the son ;.. the son, in rage, then caught hold of the-door-bar and brought it down with such, force upon the father's skull that he cracked it and killed the old man. The neighbours, hearing the row, assembled at che door of the house where the murder was committed and captured the son as he was endeavouring to escape. The members of the fatherV clan were then called together, and at a solemn conclave it was decided to administer on the spot the law set aside for parricides, instead of appealing to the magistrates, which invariably causes much delay, and perhaps the murderer might effect his escape in the meantime. So the parricide was bound hand and foot, and just without the hamlet a hole was dug and the wretched murderer consigned to its. depths. The mud was thrown, into the hole and the members of the clan stamped by turns on the grave until it wa3< level with. the ground, and so without leaving a mound, or any mark to point out the parricide*--.* grave the assembled crowd" dispersed, silently to their daily vocations.
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