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News of the Week.

The Provincial Government of Auckland Have ordered a twelve horse power road steamer.

The Auckland Society of Artists propose to hold an exhibition in February next of works of art of all kinds.

It is officially notified that Mr E. ff. Ward has been appointed Paymaster for the Supreme Cimrt Services at Dunedin, under the Public Revenues Act, 1867.

Among the passengers by the Bhip Halcione, which arrived at Wellington from London a few days ago, was Mr C. F. Hursthouse, vrell-known for his writings on New Zealand.

We understand that the Princess Theatre has been generously placed at the disposal of the Benevolent Institution for a performance in a ; d of its funds by thp DuEedin Garrick Club, which will take place on Friday week.

The Independent compares the province of Wellington to the ugly duck in Hans Andersen's fairy tale. The simile, as regards the first portion of the story, is apfc enough, but whether tho latter portion of it will ever be realised is, to say the least, open to doubt.

The Wellington Independent says :— "The effects of the late executions on the common hangman of Melbourne was (sic) shown by his appearance on the charge of drunkenness." We fail to see the connection between the cause and the effect.

The Timaru Herald learns that an action has been brought at the instance of the Provincial Government of Canterbury, against sheep farmers in the southern portion of that province, for crossing sheep over the Waitaki without giving notice.

Among the tenders read at the meeting of the City Council last week was one of L 95. for the painting of the Bell Tower, the amount of the accepted tender being only Ll3 15s. A Councilor suggested that the former was " a new chum's first go off."

We understand that the ladies of Balclutha are actively engaged in preparing for a bazaar, which is shortly to be held in aid of the funds of the Wesluyan Church building fund. The erection of the building is now being actively proceeded with.

Captain Beveridge, formerly pilot at Charleston, and now resident in Auckland, haß received a brnnze medal and blue ribbon from the Royal Humane Society, in recogni tion of his courage on several occasions in saving persons from drowning.

The telegraphic rates on Sundays, on and after the Ist inßt., will be double the rates charged on week days, both for ordinary and press telegrams. A proclamation to that effect appears ia the New Zealand Gazette of the 26th ult.

A buegy was capsized in the open space in front of the Custom House on Saturday afternoon, by the driver making too sharp a turn. Fortunately, however, no damage was done, beyond the splash board being a little bent.

An elephant has been brought to Wellington by the Galatea. The animal, which is a small one, is four years of age, and was obtained in Ceylon. It is a great pet among the sailors, by whom it is occasionally decked out in a set of harness.

The German residents of Hokitika have formed a club, the primary object of which is to afford assistance to those of their countrymen who may be overtaken by sickness or who are in distressed circumstances, and the secondary objecb the formation of a library and singing class.

The monthly meeting of the Schoolmasters' Association was held in the Education Office on Saturday last. Mr M'Lachlan read a piper on tte "Origin and Growth of the English Language/ and a discussion ensued on the topics dealt with in it. No other business was transacted.

Upwards of LSO have been subscribed towards the presentation to the Mayor, Mr "Pish. The Committee have decided that the presentation shall be in the form of a silver berceaunette and a silver tea service. Due notice will be given of the time and place when the presentation will be made.

The acclimatisation of deer in Tasmania appears to have proved an entire success, venison now being regularly received in Melbourne by the steamers from that colony. The supply is said to keep pace with the demand, which ia not as yet so excessive as to give rise to apprehensions vrith regard to the thinning of the herds which now roam in the forests of the island.

A waggoner named William Colgan committed suicide by hanging himßelf a few days ago at Morrison's Hill, near Mount Ida. It appears that he left Dunedin on the 18th ult., -with a waggon load of goods from Messrs Whittingham. Brothers, and having got as far aa the above place he got stuck on the roads. He asked assistance of a fellow■waggoner, which was refused; and, in despair, he hanged himself to the roof of Mb waggon.

A very singular circumstance (to use a mild expression) iB mentioned in our Wellington correspondent's tolegram this morning. Looking at the discreditable disclosures made regarding the tampering with Bills passed by the House, coupled with Mr M'lndoe's proposal to hold the next Besßion of- Assembly in Dunedin, we are tempted to use similar words to those emplojed by a New York paper, when it was proposed to hold Congress there instead of at Washington — " Don't let us have Congress here ; our primest burglars would learn new tricks !"

A Northern paper states that it has been shown a very creditable specimen of a coat and hat made out of New Zealand flax, the property of a gentleman recently returned to the colonies from England. In point of texture the material is not unlike No. 6 sailcloth, but considerably more pliable. Both articles have been in use for a considerable time, and judging from their present condition, seem almost indestructible in bo far as ordinary wear and tear are concerned.

A high compliment has been paid in the House of Representatives at Wellington to a most deserving and popular member of our community. In speaking on the subject of the Defence Estimates, Colonel Haultain referred in eulogistic terms to the services ef Captain and Adjutant Atkinson, of this city, and urged on the House its recognition of those services by promotion or an increase of salary. Mr M'JLean hlbo spoke highly in his praise, and promised to consider favourably the question of hia promotion.

During the present session, says a Wellington paper, our legislators have made some very good jokes. Mr Stafford in the House the other day added another to the list. The hon. gentleman was alluding to the inconsistency of the hon. Colonial Treasurer in expressing his desire to get the business concluded and allow members to return to their homes, while at the same time the Government were in both branches of the Legislature introducing a swarm of bills. In conclusion the hon. gentleman said that the Government were fast becoming a species of ornithorynchts—p, beast with a. bill. This sally waß received with shouts of laughter.

During the latter part of last week, says the Bruce Standard, the weather has been such as would be willingly accepted as suitable for winter. At this advanced stage of the season it is giving rise to apprehensions regardiDg the prospects of securing a seed time such as will give promise of a bountiful harvest. The land on the plain generally is in a saturated state, and even by a return of fine weather, it will take some time before it becomes fit for receiving the seed and the consequent operations. The winter sown ■wheats are much discoloured, and are evidently suffering from an excess of moisture and the piercingly cold winds.

In a recent debate on the Immigration and Public Works Bill, seme discussion took place on the difference between the land laws of Otago and Canterbury. In the course of this discussion Mr Vogel made the following remarks on the land law of this province: —"As far as the Province of Otago was concerned, the introduction of the principle of free selection would be a very acceptable change. He Bhould be very soTry to see this proposal of uniform land laws used as an argument for the purpose of reducing the pastoral rentals ; but he would say that if the runholders did not choose to accept the change, they should be paid for their rnns, nd the runs put up again for sale,"

We were the other day shown, by Mr G. Young, watchmaker and jeweller, Princes street, a clock, one of a parcel he has just imported, of novel instruction. The clock stands on a pedestal, and the works are of the ordinary kind. The novelty, however, consists in there being only one hand, and that immovable, the time being shown by means of a frosted glass globe marked with the hours and minutes, which revolves on the top of the pedestal, and inside this globe ia a reservoir for oil and a wick, by lighting which the clock becomes illuminated. This new kind of clock is at once a useful and ornamental adjunct to a drawing or sitting room, aud will, we should think, command a ready sale.

The cases containing the trout ova were opened by Mr Clifford at an early hour on Monday morning, and the ova were at once deposited in the hatching boxes. It is gratifying to learn that, upon examination, the eggs all showed signs of vitality, the eyes of the fish being clearly seen. The Acclimatisation Society may fairly be congratulated upon the successful result of their third importation of trout ova from Tasmania. The petcentage oi fish hatched out upon the previous occaaionß greatly exceeded that usually obtained in similar experiments by the principal European fish breeding establishments— a circumstance which is due no doubt to the unceasing attention which Mr Clifford has given to the ova during the hatching process.

A public meeting was held in the Volunteer Hall, Milton, on Monday evening, with a view to the establishment of a Band of Hope. The attendance was large, the hall being well filled, and a considerable number of ladie3 were present. The Rev. Messrs Chisholm and Gilbert, and several other genilemen, addressed the meeting, explaining the objects, working, and benefits of such a society. Ultimately, it was unanimously resolved that a Band of Hope be formed, and a President, Secretary, Treasurer, and Committee were appointed. A meeting of the Total Abstinence Society was then held, when the Secretary reported the past proceedings t ! the Committae. jand the present position of the Society. Fourteen new members joined the Society, which numbers about one hundred members.

The annual soiree in connection with the North-East Valley Presbyterian Church took place on Tuesday, in the North Dunedin Drill Shed. There was an excellent attendance, the building being quite full. The Rev. J. M. Thomson occupied the chair, and several clergymen of the Presbyterian and other denominations took part in the proceedings. Refreshments in great abundance were provided. The annual report — a ver> satisfactory one — was read by Mr Fraser,

and adopted on the motion of Mr Kay, seconded by Mr Short. Addresses were deliverfd by the Revs Messrs Johnstone, A'vea, Williams, and Sutherland, and by Messrs Birch, Simpson, and Harkness. Between the speeches, a number of selections of Bac.-ed music were sung by the choir, end the meeting then broke up.

There is a certainty of the Theatre being properly opened at last. Mr J. S. Williß has returned from his Australian tour, and has succeeded, we are glad to say, in engaging such talent, as will, in all probability, with occasional changes, keep the Theatre open for a permanency. Amongst those he has engaged in Australia we may mention the names of Mr Lawrence, Miss ! Carry George, Mrs and Mr Walter Hill, [ Mr Col'ier and Miss Lizzie Bush, Mrs Edwin Briar. Miss Julia Harwood, and Messrs Metcalfe, Musgrave, and H. Davis, The stock company are to be followed by Mrs Gladsrane, and, after Christmas, by Mr Charles Mathews and Mr Bartlett, and Mr Willis has been successful in arranging with Mr Coppin for the production of the new jiipces of Dion Boucicault, Robertßon, and Byron. We can only wish Mr Willis succesß in his new and spirited undertaking.

A very laughable case of mistaken identity took place in Queen street, Auckland, recently. A gentleman was walking with his wife towards the wharf, when she stopped behind to look at some " Bweet bonnets." The gentleman did not seem to notice her quiting his side for a minute or so, as another lady was walking behind him, whom he mistook for his wife. He stopped for a second and said to her. "Come along, my dear, we shall be late." He received no answer, and the lady endeavoured to pass him, but he caught her by the arm, saying, "You need not run away." Judge bis surprise when he got a sound box on the ear which knocked his hat off, and was told never to dare to insult a lady again. He saw his mistake at once, and his wife comma; up at the time, added to the amusement of the spectators and embarrassment of the unfortunate man, who didn't know his own wife.

A public meeting was held in the Long Room of the Provincial Hotel at Port Chalmers on Monday evening, for the purpose of initiating a fitting reception for Hia Honour the Superintendent on his return from Wellington. Mr M'Dermid, the Mayor, presided, and the following resolutions were passed :—": — " That this meeting is of opinion that a public reception should be given to His Honour the Superintendent of Otago on his return from Wellington." ' ' That a committee, consisting of hia Worship the Mayor, Messrs Mansford, Law, M'Kinnon, Dodson, Drysdale, Clark, Farnie, J. B. Robertson, und D. Miller, be appointed to carry the foregoing resolution into effect." — "That the committee be authorised to arrange for a luncheon, and that all persons attending same pay whatever sum be charged, not to exceed 10s 6d." A vote of thanks to the Chairman brought the proceedings to a close.

The recent flood has apparently done more damage throughout the country than was at first anticipated. As many of the fields had just been ploughed and sown, the whole of the loose earth the depth of the furrow, with the seed, has been in many instances washed away. The weather has of late been wet and variable, and farming operations everywhere have been much retarded in consequence. The flood has been equally disastrous in Canterbury. Much of the land recently ploughed and sown was submerged, and considerable injury will consequently result to the crops. The rivers bave as usual played havoc with bridges, and fields and roads adjoining their banks. In Southland the flood does not appear to have occurred, and one of the Invercargili papers seizes the opportunity to observe that the farmers in that province " may at least congratulate themselves on their exemption from such a series of deluges as their neighbours have this year had to endure."

An inquest was held at Balclutha on the 29th ult., on the body of James M'Gillivray, a shepherd, aged about 36 years. It appears that the deceased left the Ciydevale Station on the morning of the Bth June last, driving a young mare which was harnessed to a dray. The road lay alongside the river, and he was seen for part of the way, but he after a while" was lost sight of, and was never again seen alive. The horae and cart were found in the river, and from marks on the bank, it was inferred that the animal had upset the dfay and itself into the river, carrying the deceased with it. The body was not recovered till the morning of the 26th ult, when it was found on the jetty at Balclutha, where it had been deposited by the river, which had been in high flood on the previous night. The jury returned a verdict of " Accidentally drowned by the upsetting into the Molyneux River of the dray which he was driving."

In the Supreme Court, on Tuesday, John Gough was tried on two indictments — the one for stealing a horse, saddle, and bridle ; the other for stealing a cheque. He was found guilty on both, and sentenced to three years' imprisonment, with hard labour. Jn the case ot John A. M^Dermott, accused of stealing a silver watch, the evidence of the prisoner's guilt seemed to be perfectly clear ; but the jury took four hours to make up their inmds." finally returning wiih a verdict of Guilty. The prisoner (who has already beem three months in gaol) was sentenced to nine months' imprisonment, with hard labour. Joßeph Gibbs was convicted of obtaining goocta on false

pretences from a storekeeper in Bendigo Gully, and sentenced to 13 months' imprisonment, with hard labour. David Storey, Samuel Taylor, and John Paterson were brought up for sentence. Storey and Paterson were each sentenced to 18 months' imprisonment, with hard labour, and Taylor to two years.

The gallant Major Ropata Wabawaha intends, it seems, to burn powder shortly in a very different occupation to that of fighting Te Keoti, viz. , in shooting rabbits in Australia. The Geelong Advertiser gives the following account of the circumstances which led Eopata to form this determination :—lt: — It appears that a relation of Mr Stirling, at Winchelsea, a neighbour of Mr Austin, of Barwon Park, and who is intimate with Ropata, was conversing with him about the excellence of the sport to be obtained at Barwon Park, when the chief intimated thab as he intended shortly to visit Victoria, he would like to see if the aporfc was as good as it was represented to be. This wish being conveyed to Mr Stirling, that gentleman saw Mr Austin nbout it, and the result was just what might have been expected from the hospitable Squire of Winchelßea — a cordial invitation was at once forwarded to the gallant New Zealander, and doubtless he ■will show himself as expert in killing rabbits as he was in destroying the enemies of the Queen.

A rather amusing scene occurred at Oamaru a few days since, on the declaration of the poll for the eleotion of a Councillor for High Ward. Mr Grave, one of the defeated candidates, in returning thanks to the electors who had voted for him, made some ironical remarks regarding Mr Shrimski, and in concluding (we quote from the Times) said : — He had nothing more to say, except to remark that if they thought proper to throw Mr Shrimski into the creek, they might be conferring a public benefit. — Loud laughter, and a voice, " Water !") Mr Shrimski (exoitedly) : "What's that you say? (and, turning to the crowd) Here, here ! here's Judas going to throw me into the creek." — (Laughter.) (To the candidate " You and your crowd had better try itSuppose you begin yourself, Judas ! (and holding up his finger in the candidate's face), Why you look so white, Judas ? Why you look so white ?" — (Roars of laughter, and a voice: "More water !") Mr Grave appears to have returned no answer to Mr Shrimski's interrogatory, or at least no answer on his part is reported.

The settlers in the neighbourhood of Outram propose to ask the Government to declare that part of the Taieri a district under the Hawke's Bay and Marlborougb. Rivers Act, so that they may erect embankments to protect their properties in time of flood. The settlers in the North and East Taieri strongly objeat to the construction of the proposed embankment, fearing the result would be to throw the whole of the water upon their own land ; and on Monday last, held a meeting at Mr William Milne'B, when resolutions were passed to the effect that the desired powers ought not to be granted to the Outram settlers until all parties that are affected have been consulted on the sabjectA Committee was appointed to represent the matter to the Government, and they laßt ■we k waited upontheDeputy-Superintendent with a memorial embodying the resolutions of the meeting. Mr Tolmie, in reply, said thisflwas the first intimation he had received of the action proposed to be taken by the Bettlers in the West Taieri. The request of the memorialists was a very fair one indeed, seeing that the whole of the Taieri settlers would be affected ; and the deputation might rest assured that the Government would do nothing in the matter without giving all parties due information beforehand.

The usual monthly meeting of the Dunedin Volunteer Fire Brigade was held at the Engine Station on Monday, Captain Wain occupying the chair. The minutes of the last meeting and practice were read and confirmed. A letter was read and received from Mr Birch, explaining the nature of tke Payment of Common Jurors Bill. Mr Thomas Hudson was elected a working member, and Mr A. Neale was proposed for election at next meeting. A letter was read and received from the Corporation respecting the repairs to the Bell Tower. Captain Wain suggested that a practice should be held with the gear on the hill as soon as the repairs were completed, and hoped to see a good muster on the occasion. The Honorary Secretnry called attention to the fact that the Brigade's usual anniversary occurred next month, and added that he hoped to see it commemorated in the usual manner. It was resolved that the Corporation should receive intimation of the same, and that the anniversary should be celebrated by a torchlight procession. A committee was formed to carry out the necessary arrangements. Tuesday next -was named for practice, and the meeting then separated.

The Wanganui natives who lately received their pay for their services against Te Kooti, have been spending it in a manner which is, no doubt, highly gratifying to the storekeepers of Wanganui. The Chronicle de» scribes their mode of "knocking down" their money as follows : — Striking an average, and allowing for previous payments made, each, man now finds himself in possession of something like L3O, while the officers get about LIOO. This money they have been knocking down pretty freely lately in town. Black " belltoppera" of the orthodox pattern seem to be in favour with one or two exwarriors, while there has been a perfect run upon gaudy colours, in the shape of rugs, blankets, handkerchiefs, and cotton prints. Paoks of cards appear to be in demand

while the juveniles invest largely in "alley taws" and " commoneys." Drinkables also appear to be largely patronised, the favourite beverages consisting of alternate " goes " of rum and colonial beer. The Maoris about the public houses seem to take pleasure somewhat Badly. They don't dance, in our sense of the woro, but they sit on the benches, and chant lugubrious ditties, ever and anon embracing lovingly and having another "big drink."

The following choice specimen of penny-a-lining, taken from the Wellington Independent's report of the ball given to Commodore Lambert, is too good to be lost : — " Evon the most delightful of balls must come to an end; the hoary-headed scythe man swept inexoraMy along, although, had he been permitted to take a peep at the scene of Thursday evening, we think it probable that for a few fleeting moments at least he would have allowed his hour glass to slip from his fingers. But it was not to be, and the end came at last ; the very last waltz was danced, and as chanticleer poured forth his salutation to the awakening morning, the revellers dispersed, and in a short time faded bouquets or forgotten engagement cards were the only tangible evidences of what had been admitted on all hands to be the very jolliest ball (gentle reader, pray excuse the colloquial adjective) which has been held in Wellington, and one which we hope will be marked in the diary of our naval friends with a white stone." We are afraid that the influence of " such ambrosial nectar as claret or champagne cup" (to quote the Independent's own expression in another portion of the same report) has had something to do with the high colouring of ihe foregoing extract.

Country settlers in Otago have complained, and -with too muoh reason, of the almost impassable state of the roads in the province during the winter. As, however, it is consoling to some people to know that there are others as badly or even worse off than themselves, we reprint from a Sydney paper the following extracts from letters received from coxmtry residents in New South Wales regarding the state of the roads in that colony : — "The state of the country roads is a perfect dead-lock to all business ; teams cannot travel, and it is with great difficulty even light vehicles can get along, but they cannot do so without parting with harness, bolts, springs, splinter-bars, and shafts, besides being bogged every half mile. I would not take another night trip by mail for all the gold in the colony, it being dangerous to both life and limb, besides the pleasure of occasionally having to wade into the mud to assist in pulling horses and coach out of bogs and holes amidst heavy and pitiless rain, added to which are the dangers of flooded rivers and creeks. The roads will require at least three or four weeks fine ■weather to make them passable .'' The following is from a large storekeeper on the Northern road:— "lt ia of no use buying goods when you cannot get them up. Part of the goods I purchased in Sydney in January last are still [August] on the road. I have over 100 tons of flour on hand, and cannot send any away, owing to the roads."

We are glad to observe from a notice in the New Zealand Gazette of the Ist inst. that an energetic and popular Volunteer officer has received promotion. We refer to Lieutenant J. B, Robertson, of the Port Chalmers Naval Volunteers, who has been promoted to the rank of captain, vice Captain W. Thomson, resigned. Mr .Robertson is a volunteer of many years' standing, having originally joined the Sandridge Naval Brigade in 1860, and having been appointed Petty Officer in that corps after only ten months' service. After coming to Otago. he joined the Port Chalmers Naval Volunteers on the formation of the Company in 1854, was subsequently appointed Sub-Lieutenant and Lieutenant, and has now, as we have already mentioned, received the appointment of Captain in the same corps, the commission dating from the 10th' June last, He is succeeded in the lieutenancy by Sub-Lieutenant William Goldie, whose name as the winner of the champion belt during the last two years is well known throughout the colony ; and he in turn is succeeded in the Bub-lieu-tenancy by Mr W. A. Wilson, the commissions of both gentlemen dating from the 17th June last. We alao notice, in the same issue of the Gazette, that Ensign John Locke, of the Oaniaru Kifle Volunteers, has been promoted to the rank of Lieutenant, vice Lieutenant J. Borton, resigned, being succeeded as Ensign by Mr George Sumpter. Both commissions date from the 28th June last.

At a meeting of the Education Association in Christchurch, Dean Jacobs and the Key. Chas. Praser expressed themselves in favour of the University Council being nominated, in the first instance, and elective afterwards. One of the speakers strongly animadverted on the conduct of Messrs Rolleston and Tancred in stopping tbe progress of the Bill by moving that the University Board should be an elected and not a nominated one. He reminded the meeting that these gentlemen were hitherto tnown as the moßt determined advocates of nomination as against election. The petition from the Directors of the Christchurch High School sets forth :— " That your petitioners have learned with lively interest that a measure is now before your Honourable House for the establishment of a University of New Zealand. That your petitioners regard such a measure as calculated to promote the best interests of the colony, and to benefit everyone engaged in the instruction of the young or interested therein. That as the promoters and Directors of one of the largest educational insututiona in New Zealand, your petitioners fee} that their work will be

greatly aided by suoh a University as that which it is liow proposed to establish, by enabling them to train and prepare their pupils to compete for the scholarships, and to enter the classes, of such University. That while your petitioners, in common with the inhabitants of most of the provinces of New Zealand, would have rejoiced to see such an institution established in their own more immediate neighbourhood, they cannot but feel that the liberal endowments provided by the province of Ofcago, and the success which has attended their educational schemes, entitle that province to a first claim in fixing the locality of the proposed University."

On the afternoon of Saturday week a man carrying a swag was observed to approach the bank of tho Tokomairiro river about four miles below Milton, as if with the intention of endeavouring to cross. No particular notice was taken of the circumstanc« till towards evening, when some uneasiness was felt as to what had becomo of him, as he had not been observed after approaching the river. Upon Borne of the neighbours going to the spot, they found the swag and a pair of boots lying upon the bank, and marks as of a man sliding down into the river. No trace could be found of the body, and information was at once conveyed to the police, who immediately commenced dragging the river, and on Tuesday afternoon succeeded in recovering the body about 50 yards below the spot where he was seen to approach the bank. He seems to have been about 35 years of age, sft. 6in. in height, with light hair and sandy coloured moustache and whiskers, the latter cut short. In his pockets were found 5s 6d in silver, and a piece of card upon which was written the address " Eoberb Miller, Wangaloa." The body was taken to the Commercial Hotel, Milton, where an inquest was held next day, at which Seargeant Mallard stated that, learning that Mr Miller was manager of a farm belonging to Mr Hume, Superintendent of the Lunatic Asylum, Dunedin, he telegraphed to the latter gentleman, and received a reply that he had sent William Aitken by the coach on Saturday morning, and that Mr I Miller was instructed to meet him upon its arrival at Tokomairiro. He also said that the description of the man given in the Daily Times corresponded with that of William Aitken, who belonged to the neighbourhood of Glasgow, was 35 yews of age, and had been seven years in the colony. The jury ' returned a verdict ot *' Found drowned ;' and in a rider, called attention to the necessity for the erection of a morgue in Milton.

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Bibliographic details

News of the Week., Otago Witness, Issue 980, 10 September 1870

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5,149

News of the Week. Otago Witness, Issue 980, 10 September 1870

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