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Local and General.

Thanks. — I beg to return thanks to those friends for the subscriptions collected by Mesßrs Wallis and Smith, on behalf of myself and family, to the amount of £4 4s 6d, on account of my sad accident. — John M'Can, St Asaph street east. Trout. — The trout in the Avon are becoming so numerous that a gentleman assures us he has seen, hundreds of them when looking from the Victoria bridge into the river. The Three-Mile Cup. — The silver cup presented by Mr Wynn Williams, for a champion tlu'ee mile race on Saturday next, may be seen at the shop of Messrs Petersen and Co., High street. It is very handsome in design, and is well worth the care and trouble in training which is being taken by the intending competitors. In addition to those mentioned yesterday, Anson, the amateur champion walker at four miles will also compete, and is regarded with considerable favour by the knowing ones. It is stated by advertisement that the time for receiving entries for the cup will close at 3 p.m., on Friday next ; the entries to be made at Cobb and Co.'s office, High street, with Mr W. R. Mitchell. The Museum. — The Museum was reopened yesterday, and we observe that considerable alterations have been made on the ground floor during the recess. A new upright show case, eighteen feet in length, has been provided for the European birds, and another, thirteen feet in length, has been provided for animals. There is an increase of about 100 in the number of tho European birds, and amongst them wo notice specimens of the wlute-tailed eagle, the snow owl, a pair of capercailzie or great grouse from Scotland, a pair of white grouse from Norway, the horned owl, velvet ducks, a shell drake, and some eider ducks. Of tho animals previously in the Museum, the lion, leopard, and others have been placed in the new case, which also contains several new specimens. Amongst these, arc white Swedish hares, a lynx, pouched rat from Java, ground squirrels, badgers, and an ice fox from Lapland. Besides these additional specimens, there are many others, making in all a considerable improvement in the collection.

Entertainment. — The entertainment by pupils and boarders at the Convent school, Barbadoes street, was repeated last night under the patronage of his Honor the Superintendent. The attendance was exceedingly large. Cathedral Square. — The City Council and Standing Commission of the Diocesan Synod have at last arrived at a final arrangement of the points under negotiation, and we presume the intended alterations will be proceeded with at once. The Cathedral. — We understand that the Cathedral Commission have prepared a circular soliciting subscriptions towards the erection of the Cathedral, and are only awaiting the satisfactory settlement of tho roadway question before issuing them. Movement against the Use of the Knife in Italy. — A society is being established at Turin for the purpose of discouraging the use of the knife, which is now so constnntly resorted to in street brawls and other quarrels. Besides moral means, such as lectures, meetings, dramatic representations, books, &c, the society will employ material agents, such as medals in gold, silver, and copper, gifts of money in the savings banks, &c. A senator, the Marquis Pcs di Villamrina, is its president, and many of the leading members of Turin are on the committee. When 300 members have been obtained, there will be a general meeting. Christchurch Artillery. — Sergt. Piper of this corps, has offered a cup for competition in drill by the gunners. The cup is of goblet form, the bowl being supported by a stand of arms, which are bound together by a rose, shamrock, and thistle wreath. The cup is to be awarded to the gunner who proves himself to be best acquainted with the Armstrong drill at an examination to be held on a specified date about three months hence. Competitors will first be examined, and then have to explain the working of the gun, the principle of its construction, and the mode of making shells to a squad, which will undoubtedly be a good test of efficiency. Seeing the large number of shooting cups now in competition, Sergeant Piper has acted most judiciously in offering his for drill. It is a plan that might be followed in other corps with great advantage. Suicide by a Lunatic Patient. — An inquest was held at Sunnyside, yesterday, on the body of James Clarke, alias Pepper, a lunatic patient, who destroyed himself by hanging on Friday evening. Mr T. W. Maude acted for the Coroner, Dr Coward, who being medical officer in charge of the Asylum, was one of the witnesses as to the cause of death. It appeared in evidence that deceased had hung himself from the bar of one of the j windows in the dormitory in which, with other patients, he slept at night. He had secreted the waist-belt of one of the patients, which he made use of to effect his purpose. The window was so low that after tying the belt to tthe bar it was only by dropping on his knees that he succeeded in putting an end to his life. He was discovered almost immediately by the night-watchman in the course of his halfhourly visit, but although every effort was made to revive him, life was pronounced extinct by the medical officer, who was at once summoned and arrived without delay. The verdict of the jury, of,whomJMr James, schoolmaster, was foreman, wa3 to the effect that deceased had destroyed himself while insane ; and the jury further expressed an opinion that no precaution or caTe had been neglected by the authorities whereby such a melancholy accident could have been prevented. New Invention. — The Sydney Morning Herald of a recent date says : — Mr Alfred Edward Arnold, mechanical engineer, is the author of a new invention for utilising waste leather, and has so far secured the benefit of his discovery to himself, by having applied for letters of registration for a patent. By means of the machinery to be employed he will be able to turn to a profitable account the enormous quantity of waste leather now burnt ever week in this colony, which, when manufactured, will be a substance harder than leather, impervious to water, and capable of taking a beautiful polish. It can be used to make heels and soles of boots and shoes, winkers for horses, buckets, covers % of books and a great variety of fancy useful articles. Any invention that saves waste of any sort to a community, and in this case a very large one, must be regarded as for the general good, so we hope Mr Arnold's invention may be a success and a boon to this colony. Telegram: from England to Australia. — The Brisbane Courier of the 4th instant observes : — The charges for telegrams from England to this colony by the way of South Australia will probably be as follows : — For a message of twenty words, including address and signature, £9 19s, and half that rate for every ten words or fraction of ten words additional. Of this amount, £8 9s will be paid to the companies owning the different portions of the line between England and Port Darwin ; £1 will be the South Australian charge for transmission by their overland line ; and 10s for transmission from Adelaide to any portion of this colony. The charge proposed to be made by South Australia on their overland line is exorbitant, and greatly in excess of the rates for similar distances within the other colonies. For instance, the distance from Normanton to Wentworth in New South Wales, near the South Australian border, is 2780 miles, and the charge for messages will be only 103, whilst we will have to pay 20s for the 1600 miles of the Port Darwin line. In no other case within tbe colonies are the rates anything like so high. The fact is that the rest of Australia will have to pay heavily for the South Australians having run a line across the continent through an unsettled country, where there is no business to contribute to the cost of the working expenses. Even to the South Australians themselves the charge made for a message from England will be greater than if their overland line had not been undertaken and the Java cable landed at Normanton instead.

Auckland. — The; revenue of the Province of Auckland for the year 1872 is estimated by the Treasurer at £129,998 (including a balance from 1871 of £35,000), and the expenditure at £121,252 14s. I Meeting of Old Colonists. — Another meeting of old colonists was held at the City Council Chambers, at 4 p.m. yesterday. There were fifteen present. On the motion of Mr Anderson, the chair was taken by Mr M. B. Hart. The Chairman said that no names had been sent in to the committee, and an immense amount of apathy seemed to prevail with reference to the proposed dinner. The committee had made inquiries, and found that the least amount for which tickets could be issued would be 15s, one hundred being guaranteed. The committee desired to hear from the meeting whether the project should be given up, or left in abeyance for the present. After some conversation, it was' decided to let the matter drop. We understand that it is the intention of some of the early colonists to liave a private dinner on the 16thk The Way of Saying it. — It is related of Mrs Siddons that once, when dining at the country seat of a friend, she frightened out of liis wits a servant who, when on the point of handing her butter, withdrew it quickly, saying, " Excuse me for a moment — there's a fly on the butter." To which the great actress, assuming a look and a tone of intense horror, exclaimed, "A fly, sayye! How gat it there?" Something of the same sort comes to us from Rome of her niece, Fanny Keinble, of whose withering speeches to indiscreet persons many droll stories are told in society. One of the drollest is this : A meek young man was presented to her, and unluckily opened the conversation with, " I hear you have very fine hotels in America ! " " Sir, I have no hotels in America," she replied, in a measured, contemptuous voice, that caused the young man to retreat with alacrity. [ Bulls That are not Irish.— Whenever the paternity of a bull is uncertain, an attempt is made to father it on some unfortunate Emcralder. Yet it was a Scotch woman who said that the butcher of her own town only killed half a beast at a time ; it was a Dutchman who said a pig had no ear-marks except a short tail; and it was a British magistrate who, being told by a vagabond that he was not married, responded, " That's a good thing for your wife." It was an English reporter who stated that at a meeting of the British Ethnological Society were exhibited " casts of the skull of an individual at different periods of adult life, to show the changes produced in ten years," though Dean Swift mentions two skulls preserved in Ireland, one of a person when he was a boy, and the other of tho same person when he had grown to be a man. It was a Portuguese mayor who enu- | merated among the marks by which the body of a drowned man might be identified when found, " a marked impediment in his speech " It was the famous Calino, the French Boyle Roche, who, on contentedly laying his head on a large stone jar for a pillow, replied to one who inquired If it was not rather hard, " Not at all, for I've stuffed it with hay." It was a Western orator, "who, warming with his subject, exclaimed, " There is not a man, woman, or child in the house who has arrived at the age of fifty years, but what has felt this truth thundering through their minds for centuries." It was a Maine editor who said that a pumpkin in that State grew so large that eight men* could stand around it — a statement which is only equalled by that of another who saw a flock of pigeons fly so low that he could shake a stick at them. Acclimatisation Societies. — The Melbourne correspondent of the South Australian Advertiser, in the issue of that paper on Sept. 8, thus speaks of the efforts of acclimatisation societies : — Although the Acclimatisation Society are stocking our forests with game, and our waters with fish, it can scarcely be said that they have been to us an unmitigated blessing. 'One of their pets has overrun the Western District for some years past, and while Princes and other noble sportsmen have enjoyed the luxury of knocking over the swarming bunnies by scores and hundreds, |we have also read of their destruction in thousands by less sportsmanlike methods. The present system is the most sensible one, namely, of putting tbe prolific creature in twopound tins by a local Meat Preserving Company. The Society's protege, which has equalled the rabbit in fecundity, namely, the saucy cocksparrow, is now to be put down by Act of Parliament ; but there is a third species of immigrant brought out by tho Society, j whose presence is now objected to by farmers and vignerons, and many of these classes who are strong protectionists are now advocating the withdrawal of ' protection ' which tho Game Act affords to the English hare. A meeting was held in Geelong on Saturday evening, composed of persons who wish to see the hare ' preserved ' — not in tho condition which enhances the luxury of currant jelly, but in all the vitality which shall afford a congenial occupation to the unemployed greyhound — but the attendance also of others who have a right to be heard on this question lets us into better acquaintance with the private habits of our friend puss ; and if all that was said about him be true, he must be a dear friend indeed. One man said he had lost trees by hundreds, but the trees of his neighbours had been destroyed by thousands. One man had lost all his apple trees, and contended that the countrymen must not bo expected to submit to the destruction of their property for the gratification of tho townspeople. One farmer boldly averred that he killed all lie could catch on his grounds, and intended serving the greyhounds in the same way. Another contended that tho vignerons should be allowed to kill the hares, and not the hares the vignerons ; and with a view ta give effect to the opinions of the meeting, a committee of farmers and vinegrowers was then and there appointed. These experiences of ours in ac) climatisation should be useful for admonition 1 to our neighbours, and I dare say the farmers and vignerons of South Australia will take a vote of them.

Acclimatisation. — The Oamaru paper of Dec. 8 says : — The thrushes at Mr Derrett's plantation have this year built several nests but though the birds have sat the regular time no broods have been hatched out. Last year, out of sixteen nests, only one brood was hatched ; from which it is inferred, that there are scarcely any male birds in the plantation. As there are several of these in Dunedin, kept as cage-birds, it is to be hoped that an effort, will be made to obtain at least two or three to turn out. The starlings are often seen in the district, but there are fewer in town this year than last. No less than four broods have, however, been hatched under the roof of our office this season, besides others elsewhere. Sugar Growing in North Queensland. — The Marlborough News gives the following information relative to sugar-growing in the North : — "Considerable interest no doubt will be felt by the Mary River sugargrowers in the prospects of their fellowplanters further north. A gentlemau lately from Port Mackay informs us that this season's crushing on the Pioneer River alone will probably yield 2000 tons of sugar, the cane there looking remarkably well, with an avverage density of Bto 10 degrees. Messrs Hewilt and Romilly have had a yield of three tons to the acre from fifteen acres of cane, and the average yield in that district so far has been two and a half tons. Great anxiety is felt on the Northern rivers generally as to the result of the present Jason prosecutions. Many of the planters expect to be able to provide themselves with Chinese coolies should the Polynesian traffic be suppressed; some, however, ai*e confident that sugar may be grown to advantage by white labour alone. This latter opinion we fully endorse, especially as a great deal of the Northern sugar land consists of rich deep black loam forest, not very thickly timbered, where ploughs and other machinery can be made to supersede that most primitive and expensive form of agricultural implement— a half-naked savage with a hoe in his hand. There are many capitalists from New South Wales, Victoria, and elsewhere now in the North with the intention of taking up land for sugar cultivation. The principal points of attraction at present are Cardwell, the Herbert, and the Mackay, a river about ten miles to the north of Rockingham Bay, which— no doubt to prevent confusion with Port Mackay, three hundred miles south of it — will be called the Tully River. The only persons at present engaged in sugar-growing on the Tully River are Mr Davidson and another, but several Melbourne men are about to take up land there. The soil is described as being highly fertile, and Mr Davidson, the pioneer planter, a gentleman of great experience in sugargrowing, asserts that it is among the best he has seen. In the older settled districts sugar land is at a premium. On the Herbert tho whole of the river frontage has been alienated.. At Port Mackay, in consequence of the late prolific yields, land cannot be bought under £10 ah acre." Canterbury as seen by a Visitor. — The following is contributed to the Waikouaiti Herald by a correspondent : — The races were very good, and the weather, except the last day, all that could be desired ; certainly the last day was a regular Dunedinor, and no doubt in the world it prevented Peeress from winning the plate. Of course tho extra 71bs, and state of the course was all against her, but I am quite satisfied Knottingley nor any other horse at present in New Zealand can look at her if she is ridden properly and fairly weighted. The race for the Cup was a magnificent one. The jockey of Peeress made too sure, and never gave the mare her head until within 150 yards of tho winning post, and then the other jock tried to jostle him off the course just as they came to the rails and very nearly succeeded, but she just managed to come inside, and at every stride she gained upon the "horse and at last, I am quite sure, she was half a head the winner. — because I stood right opposite — but the judge gave it a dead heat, so it was run over again, and the second time the jockey gave the mare her head, and she went away at once almost distancing the old horse all the way round. Then again for the Grand Stand Handicap, although a good field, and in good company, she beat the ruck easily in a canter.' She is just the cut of a racer, with a long head and neck, well ribbed up, just like a greyhound, and very strong in her liind quarters. Old Knottingley is also a very nice looking horse, and goes very strong and gamely. Envy is a very handsome mare, and not to •be despised wherever she runs. Exile will turn out well yet, I think, and Defamation will be heard of again. As for Lacenf eed, Miss Flat, Southern Chief, Flying Fish, Sweet Briar, Malabar, Barbarian, Quickstep, and some others, they may do at Dunedin or Waikouaiti, but they aro no use on the Christchurch course, and I should hope will never put in an appearance again. There are some very promising young things for the next year. The second day p"ut mo in mind of the Derby; — on a small scale of course — and the road all the way to the course, six miles, was almost impassable for carriages t of all descriptions, from the handsome brougham to the donkey and cart. Itinerants and showmen of all kinds mustered very strong. The course is equal to any I ever saw — as level as a table, and a beautiful oval. The grand stand is the best in the Australian colonies, and you never lose sight of the horses all the way round. The trains kept running all the day every quarter of an hour, and were crowded to excess. The Agricultural Show was also a great success, and certainly, by very far, the best ever held in New Zealand. The horses and sheep were in much larger force, and the cattle and pigs were magnificent. There was the largest attendance of people I have ever seen in New Zealand, viz. 7000. The flower j show and ball at the Provincial buildings also went off well, and Lady Bowen, it is said, was delighted with Christchurch. The regatta and the celebration of the majority of the province come off this month. The people here know how to enjoy themselves and no mistake."

Accident. — As a man named Thomas' Logan, employed by Mr T. C. Mullins, of Craythorne's Hotel, Lincoln Road, was fetching a mare from tether yesterday, his leg became entangled in the rope, and the animal dragged him some distance before he could get free. When this was done his right thigh was found to be broken, and he was accordingly conveyed to the Hospital where he is now doing well. German Church. — A movement is on foot amongst the German residents of Canterbury to erect a Lutheran Church in this city. Subscription lists have been sent out, and in some instances have been liberally responded to. It is intended, should the required amount be subscribed, to send to Germany for a minister, who will not only officiate in Christchurch, but will travel at stated intervals through the ■country districts.

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Bibliographic details

Local and General., Star, Issue 1191, 12 December 1871

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3,746

Local and General. Star, Issue 1191, 12 December 1871

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