The polling for a member to represent the Waitaki District in the General Assembly took place on Friday, 3rd inst. Prom the day of nomination considerable interest was manifested in the result. The supporters of both candidates were sanguine of success, and no effort was wanting^ on the part of either Committee to secure the return of the man of their choice. At an early hour in the morning an unusual amount of activity was displayed, conveyances of all descriptions, from the aristocratic buggy to the humble fish-cart, turned out with flags and bills, the most displaying the words, " Yote for Macassey." Shortly after the poll opened, however, it was observed that the few " traps " flying Steward's colors were arriving at the Courthouse full of electors, while those on the opposition side appeared to have little work to do. It was therefore pretty safely predicted that Oamaru would poll a majority for the local candidate. Though there was considerable excitement during the day, the contest was carried out in a spirit of honorable and goodhumored rivalry, and not the slightest disturbance occurred. At the close of the poll at four o'clock a large crowd had collected round the Courthouse, but as the returns froni the country districts had not been received the assemblage dispersed. At about halfpast six returns were received from Papakaio and Otepopo, showing a majority for Macassey of 17 at the former place and 15 at the latter. Bets were then in favor of Macassey, and the result was looked upon as a foregone conclusion provided that Hampden also gave the majority on the same side. When about 8 o'clock the trooper who brought in the Hampden return announced that there was a majority of 1 for Steward, general opinion was that it would be a very close run. A few minutes afterwards the Returning Officer announced the result of the polling to be approximately aa follows : — Steward ... ... ... ... 188 Macassey 137 Majority for Steward 51 The announcement was received with loud and continued cheering, and when a hearing could be obtained Mr Steward thanked his supporters briefly for the honor they had done him, and expressed his intention to do his utmost to deserve their confidence. After chairing the successful candidate the assemblage dispersed ; so ended the sharpest and at the same time the most orderly election contest we ever witnessed. The numbers polled at the different booths were as follow : —
Of the number of votes polled at Hampden, 14 were those of persons who travelled from Dunedin by coach and steamer for the purpose.
steward 1. Macassey. Oattiaru Papakaio . . . Otepopo Harnpden ... 123 11 17 37 41 28 32 36
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WAITAKI DISTRICT., North Otago Times, Volume XV, Issue 597, 7 February 1871
WAITAKI DISTRICT. North Otago Times, Volume XV, Issue 597, 7 February 1871
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