A Bill to require vehicles on roads to carry lamps at night was introduced by Mr Major and read a. first time m the House on Friday night* The municipal white swans hi Christchurch have taken possession of that part of the river near the Mill Island, and make a very" pretty show. At Columbia. (Ohio), Mr CHdfield broke all world's, automobile -'records' for one tc ten miles. His fastest mile was covered m 56 2.5 seconds, and he completed the ten miles m 9mins 54 4-ssecs. A farmer m the Wheatstone district, Canterbury, has a crossbred ewe which has given birth to no less than five lambs, by a. Shropshire nun. The progeny are all healthy, and give promise of developing into fine sheep. The Fountain of Friendship- Oddfellows' Lodge m Auckland is worth about £22,000, its assets being mainly property m Queen and Lome .streets,- m that city, and all absolutely free and unencumbered. The Premier mentioned during the debate on' the State Fire Insurance Bill that another English fire insurance company liad intimated to the Agent-Genera) its intention to begin business m New Zealand. . - » ' . William Barak, the king, and the hist representative of the Yarra tribe of blacks, lias just died at the aborigines station, Coranderrk, Victoria. He was about 85 years of age, and m the early days was a ine'uibeiv of the native 'police, and a well-known % 'hracker." The cause of death was shock, occasioned by a fall into a fire. Samuel Griffiths, son of the Rev. J. W. Griffiths, of Whangarei, «ras ; killed al Rongotea, Rangitikei, 1 last week. He was driving a lorry for amusement, and losing the reins, stooped to reach them, falling beneath the vehicle. 'He received such 'injuries lhai; he died m half an hour. "Some of the best men I have bad at Lincoln College," said the director during an address at Ashburton, "were those young men who were paying their way at the college from savings they/ had made from their wages while working on their father's farms, or from some small capital tliat had been left to them." Mr Ralph Bicknell, of "The Bicknells" of the Stine and Evans Cornedy 1 Company, is not only a clever dancer and a first-class light comedian, but lie is a composer and author of repute. Two of his numbers are sung m "Brown's m Town," uamely, . "Linda, .... My Hindu Queen" and "Down, oil the Old Swanee." He is engaged for the n«ct four years by the Sol Bloom Publishing Company, New ' York, lo wfile exclusively for tbeui. >
The Hospital Trustees at Masterton have decided not to erect a new hospital at present. The proposed hospital was estimated to cost £5000, and the trustees have, only £2700 m hand. Among the passengers by the Australian steamer which arrived at the Bluff last week were a, number of young men from Australia, who lmve come to follow their trades m this colony, because of the depression m Victoria. A cable message has been received by Mr F. J. Oakes, of Wellington, from Mr M'Leod, assistant manager of the New Zealand Band, asking him to arrange for concerts to be given by the band on its arrival m Wellington. The band is on board the Gothic, which is due at Wellington about September 16th. Signor Mayor Des Planches, the Italian Ambassador who is now visiting Los Angeles, California, is arranging an elaboratei scheme of Italian colonisation of the southern part of that State where experimental Italian colonies are already prospering. It is said that 10,000 Italians are to be imported into California during the coming autumn. In order to accommodate the members of the Young People's Society of Chrisian Endeavor who will visit the World's Fair next summer, the St. Louis Y.P.S.C.E. Union has arranged for the erection of a hotel to accommodate 4000. persons. Captain Blackburn, who was attempting to cross the Atlantic from Massachusetts to France m an open, boat, has arrived at Louisburg (N.S.) m a weak condition. The boat liad been upset and Blackburn nearly drowned. He suffered greatly during the month which has elapsed since he started, and intends abandoning the voyage. Amongst those who took part m the procession to the top of One Tree Hill at the formal ceremony of opening the Kings Drive at Cornwall Park, Auckland, was a lady of ninety-four years of age, Mrs Hamlin, who has resided m Auckland from the time of its birth as a city. The walking craze is extending to the United States. Mr Klilm Hoot, jun., son of the Secretary for War, and a college friend, care tramping from Hamilton (Col.) to New York, a distance of 300 miles. When they entered Middleton, New Yoi'k, travel-stained and disreputable m appearance, the police held them up as vagrants; but satisfactory explanations soon secured their release. The annual report of the Board of Trade on the strikes and lockouts of 1902 shows that there were 442 disputes, as against 642 m 1901 ; but the number of workpeople affected was greater, being 256,667 for 1902, against 179,546 for 1901. The number of working days lost by strikes was 3,479,255 m 1902, and 4,142,---267 m 1901. , The expedition under Dr Max Uhle> to explore the, historic remains of Peru has returned to California, bringing loads of interesting relics from the palaces and tombs of the Incas. The most valuable of these are incontestable proofs of a highly evolved civilisation antedating by at least two thousand years any hitherto discovered, traces of social development m that part of the' worldWith the exception of Lhasa m Tibet, Quito m Ecuador is the only capital m thet world that to this day can only be reached for a considerable part of the journey from the sea on mule-back. It was announced from Guyaquil, on Juno 25, that the American company which is building a railroad from Guyaquil to Quito, had opened a station at Guamote, at an elevation of ten thousand feet above the sen. This ''railway m the clouds" involves a, piece of the most difficult construction m the world. A complete skeleton of remarkable size has been unearthed at Holbeach during excavations for the foundations of some new houses; Every bone was m perfect condition, not a tooth was missing, and the skeleton measured no less than seven feet' two inches. in length. Near the bones was found a curious key. Stukely, the famous antiquary, who was born at Holbeach, records that at the spot where the discovery was made there formerly existed a : Roman Catholic chapel, dedicated. to St. Peter. The report of the directors ,of the Union Bank of Australia, as adopted at the annual meeting of the proprietors, held m London on July 20th, states that on February 28th the net profits were £133,793 3s 6d, inclusive of balance brought forward. Of this sum £50,000 had been released and restored to the bank's reserve fund, increasing it from £950,000 to £1,000,000. They had also appropriated £4000 towards the pension fund of the bank's staff. 'From the remaining (£79,793 3s 6d), the directors had resolved upon the declaration of a dividend of 8 p?r cent, per annum, equal to £1 per share, which would ( leave £19,793 3s 6d to be carried forward. The members of the Canterbury Land Board, have returned from their trip through the Mackenzie country (says the Timaru Post). Starting at 'the Chamberlain and A'lbury settlements, the members went right round the runs where the heaviest falls of snow occurred, going down via Hakataramea to Kurow and Oamaru. They state that though the losses are riot so heavy as those of 1895, they are quite bad enough. One member remarked tliat he considered the losses on several stations would range from 2000 up to 5000. At Simon's Pass, Balmoral, Ashwiek, and Rhoboro Downs lie considered the losses would be very heavy, while on other stations they would be heavy enough. As indicating the large number of Southland sheep purchased for transmission to Canterbury during the past few months, it is worthy of note, says the .<ataura Ensign, that one Canterbury buyer alone during a short stay m this district, paid £1200 m railage alone on sheep purchased by >him m this district, and wliicli were all forwarded to Canterbury. Tlie^ tempting prices northern buyers have offered have had the effect of sadly depleting Southland flocks ; so much so that breeding ewes are now being sold by the, hundred for Canterbury. Southland pastoralists are killing the goose that lays tlie golden eggs with a vengeance. Mr Hall-Jones said m the House on Friday night that the blame for nonexpenditure of appropriation for roads to back blocks lay with the local bodies, and he: would be very chary about entrusting expenditure to local bodies m future. It was a question 'whether the Government should not do these works itself, instead of entrusting them to local authorities. The Government hud authorised the expenditure of the whole of the vote for the Roads Department passed last year, with the exception of some £15,000 and the non-expenditure complained of by Mr J. Allen was the fault of tlie local bodies. Mr Carnegie, m accenting the burgess ticket of Dingwall, said that among the last ceremonies he attended was one m Washington among another section of the race; and the President on that memorable occasion gave utterance to tlie sentiment "that a man. w lib always wanted to be carried was never worth carrying." That was how he felt about free libraries. They tended to lessen the pauperism of tlie community. They maintained the library by taxation, and all that he did was to advance a little tlie building of these libraries. That library was 'the property of the poorest man m Dingwall to the same extent as thai of the multi-millionaires m town. (Laughter.) What always impressed him about the free library was 'that the poorest man or woman m, the town walked past and said proudly, "This is my property. ] am fellow-owner here with Provost and Judge and Town-clerk and Bailie, and all tlie other members of the aristocracy. Poor as I am the masters are always glad to have me enjoy their society, and I become more of a. man the more I become acquainted with them." Tlie free library was the cradle of Democracy, composed of the best rulers' m the Republic of Letters. (Applause.) At Melbourne the other night Professor Gregory set about shaking a number of generally received ideas. He remarked that he had been staggered to find m Victoria text-books m use that were 30 years out of date with respect to ocean currents. In no subject were the textbooks so much out of date and so obsolete as m geography. Dealing with the old idea that the interior of the earth was a molten mass, he pointed out that, while it might be at a greater heat than would melt anything known at the surface, the enormous pressure would still keep the interior a solid mass. The presumed connection between volcanoes and earthquakes, which had led people to imagine a recent occurrence at Warrnambool premonitory of volcanic activity, had no basis. Earthquakes and volcanoes were connected because they were associated with the weak points of the earth's crust. Tlie earthquakes were due to shrinkage of the earth's crust, and the movements took place along narrow cracks, which did not open out and swallow up cities except m popular novels, but really closed up. The oscillation on either side might cause great damage. Volcanoes were not burning mountains. They did not burn, and they were not necessarily mountains, but holes m the ground. Ocean currents were proved by the most recent works to be directly due to the action of the wind piling up waters m certain positions. From this 'accumulation of waters currents poured m all directions m which they were allowed by the distribution of land and water. Tlie idea of the Gulf Stream flowing as an ocean- current from America to Europe was now discarded, and it was shown that it ended at the Newfoundland banks, beyond which there was only a surface drift of water m the direction of the prevailing winds. Tlie effect of tlie. ocean currents of the North Atlantic at parts of, the year was to chill, and not to warm, north- western Europe. ,
Now the marriageable uge has been extended very far, and no one dreams (The Lady observes) of regarding the woman of thirty as hoplessly out of the running m the matrimonial race. We have ceased to think all unmarried women subjects for commiseration. It is no longer a reproach to be single. The single woman who lias an occupation of any kind is allowed to live withoutbeing regarded as unlucky. The degree of interest that some members take m the business of the country was amply demonstrated 'ust night (says tlve. Post of Friday). Fov several houva the State Fire Insurance Bill, which involves an initial loan of £100,000, and an unlimited liability, .was under consideration. In the earlier part of the evening there wds a good attendance oi members, but towards the smal hours there were very many empty benches, while at least six members peacefully snored — very audibly. Occasionally they were awakened by the division bell, and even then some of them, including more than one Minister, were too tired to go into the lobbies to vote, their votes being recorded by the Whips. After the division they either drowsily wandered out into the lobbies, or again composed themselves to slumber. "Taut tired feeling" gets a very strong hold of the House at 2 o'clock m tlw morning.