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West Coast Times. TUESDAY, MAY 21, 1878.

A quarterly return of the value of the imports and exports at the several ports of New Zealand, has been published in the New Zealaud Gazette. The return is for the quarter, ended on the 31st March last, and shows that the value of the imports into the Colony during that period was £2,349,291. During the corresponding quarter of the year 1877, the imports were £1,708,085, showing an increase in favor of the first quarter of thisyear of more than £600,000. At nearly every- port the increase has been marked, especially at Dunedin, Lyttelton, Auckland, and Nelson. In scarcely one instance, excepting Westport and Hokitika, have the imports decreased in comparison with the first quarter of the present year. The following figures will show that of the three West Coast ports, Oreymouth.alono has increased imports :■ — March, 1878. March, 1877. & £

Thus there is a decrease of nearly £5000 at Hokitika and £700 at Westport, while the Greymouth returns show the large increase of £12,000. With regard to exports, however, the case is different. The Colony as a whole exported during the first quarter of the present year to the value of £2,396,180, a considerable decrease in comparison with the returns for the past quarter of last year, which were £2,419,661. The value of exports decreased largely at Auckland, Wellington, and Napier, and slightly at Dunedin. and Lyttelton. At Kaipara the value increased from £5000 to £18,000, a considerable jump indeed. At each of the West Coast ports it is satisfactory to note that the quarterly returns show a steady increase on the value of our exports. At Westport the return is very small certainly, but there even, the rate of increase is considerable. The following are the comparative returns :—

In every instance the exports were wholly to Victoria, save to the value of £894 exported to China from Greymouth.

The affairs of the Hokitika Quartz Mining Company are going on in a most satisfactory way. Applications for share 3 are coming in from all quarters, and those desiring to secure an interest in the company should lo? e no time in applying, or they may be too late. On Friday last Messrs Craig and Rae waited on Mr Button to instruct him to prepare the Deed of Association. On Saturday the deed was ready, and yesterday it was numerously

signed. A number of shares have been applied for by Greymouth and Christchurcb people, and this without effort or canvass. A general meeting of shareholders will shorly I tike place.

Conveying ttie new shaft ft'oln Ross to Okarito, for the steamer WaipaM, was one of the toughest jobs ever accomplished by a small party of men oh atiy of the West Coast beaches. The difficult part of the work commenced at the Waitaha river. Peter Walker, on account of the owners, made a bargain for the carriage of the shaft from Ross to Okarito, but the contractor, after taking it some distance, preferred throwing up bis agreement to tackling the Wanganui Bluff, which is at present in a wretched state being almost impassable. John Allen, of Waitaha, was then induced to undertake the work, and with a couple of horses and four men, the heavy part of the journey was commenced on Wednesday night. The pinch commenced at the Wangauui Bluff, when they had great difficulty in getting the horses over without any loading. Here they were joined by two other men, making six in all, and Walker. From that lime until Saturday afternoon at four o'clock, they bad to work night and day. It is difficult for any one to form an idea of what a task it was to take the cumbrous article along the bluff. Two of the men who were employed informed us that it took them one whole day to carry it a distance of a mile and a half, so rugged was the way. Nothing but a series of immense boulders faced them for about four miles, and {< shouther to shouther " was the only way to manage, The weather for the greater part of the time was one continuance of wind and rain, but each man of the party worked heroically until reaching the Okarito river. Even with the unloaded horses the men took four hours to pass the Wanganui Bluff on their return trip.

About forty gentlemen met at the State School House yesterday evening for the purpose of forming a musical society. After a short discussion, it was decided to call the new society the Hokitika Philharmonic. A Committee was appoiuted consisting of Messrs Duncan. Souudy, Spenco, Dixon, Cleary, and Croft. Mr Dixon was chosen as conductor, Mr Soundy, secretary, and Mr Croft hon. treasurer. It was resolved to charge an entrance fee of £1 Is per annum, and Tuesday evenings at eight o'clock were fixed for practice. A committee was appointed to draw up rules. The next meeting is fixed for the 29th insfc., at 8 p.m.

Messrs Pollock and Bevau sold, yesterday, Mr FitzGerald's property, on Gibson's quay, for £672. The furniture realized very good prices.

A miner named John Nisbett, who has been working at the foot of the Waiho Gorge for several years past, had both hands frostbitten last week. He ventured with some others over the gorge aud into the rauges. The cold was so intense that on his return he lost the use of both hands. He was under treatment 'when the Waipara left Okarito, and hopes were eutertained that the circulation would be restored to the benumbed, parts before long.

Mr Thomas Hunter of the firm of Arnott. and Hunter, builders, of Greymouth, committed suicide iv that town on Sunday last. The Argus gives the following particulars:—' For some time past Mr Hunter has exhibited symptoms of mental perturbation, which have caused anxiety to his partner in business and his persona I f riend 3. On Saturday evening be appeared to be in better spirits than usual, and retired to bed iv Mr Arnott's house, where he has been residing for some time, shortly after midnight. About

half-past seven o'clock' on Sunday morning Mr Arnott got up, and finding that Mr Hunter had gone out, walked up to the State School, where the firm had some work on hand, and afterwards on to the hospital, but without seeing him. About 12.30 Mr Arnott went to the workshop in Terapuhi-street, and not finding the key of the door in the place in which it was usually " planted," he looked through the window, and, to his horror, saw Mr Hunter hanging by the neck against one of the walls. Mr Arnott immediately hurried away in search of assistance, and met Mr James, of the Dispatch Foundry, who went to the shop, burst open the door, and cut the body down. A few minutes afterwards Dr Aeheson, under whose care Mr Hunter had been, arrived, and pronounced life to be extinct. The act must have been premeditated, as deceased had locked the door inside, and had carefully laid aside bis coat and hat. It appears that suspicions of a tendency to suicide on Hunter's part have for some time been entertained by his friends, and that that those who knew him most intimately are not surprised at his sad end. An inquest will, in all probability, be held to-day.

The proposal of the Westland County Council, for a Conference of County Councillors appears to be favorably entertained throughout New Zealand. In { nearly every instance in which a reply has been received, a desire for concerted action has been expressed, and delegates have been nominated to attend the Conference.

The proposal of Mr La Fontaine, of Robs, to erect wire bridges over the priucipal rivers and streams between Iloss and Jackson's Bay, on consideration of his being allowed to select certain lands in exchange therefor, meets with the approval of ihe Hon. J. Macandrew, the present Minister of Public Works, who has notified his intention to bring in a bill to enable the lands to be given. The County Chairman has received a letter from the Minister to this effect. The former Ministry threw cold water on the proposal.

For the quarter ended March 31st, 1878, the number of money orders issued at. the Post Office, Hokitika, was 694, amounting in value to £2463 6s ; number paid, 577, equal to £1868 8a; accounts opened at the Post Office Savings Bank, 47; closed, 46; deposits, 232; withdrawals, 182; amount of deposits, £2900 19s 4d; amount withdrawn, £2928 7s 7d; excess of withdrawals over deposits, £27 8s 3d. ■

The following statement of the liabilities and assets of the banks in the Colony of New Zealand, for the quarter ended 31st March last, is published in the New Zealand Gazette. The Bank of New Zealand has liabilities £4,705,489 7s 7d, and assets £6,343,578 9s lid; the Union Bank, liabilities £1,650,567 4s Bd, and assets £2,220,583 14s 3d; the Hank of Now South Wales, liabilities £846,875, and assets £1,745,024; the Bank of Australasia,

liabilities £544,526, and assets £898,996; the National Bank, liabilities £837,012, and assets £1,787,134; and the Colonial Bank, liabilities £732,720, against assets amounting to .£1,106,726, l"he total liabilities of the banks amount in round numbers to £9,317,191, while their assets reach atotalof £14,098,944. There were notes in circulation to the value of £944,509, and deposits not bearing interest, amounting in the aggregate to £3,354,535 16s lOd.

Mr E. T. Gillon has been appointed editor of the Now Zealander.

The outward San Francisco mail closes at half-past ten this morning.

Mr and Mrs Heber Newtou and family, after a visit to England, returned to Greymouth by the Charles Edward on Sunday.

Two informers named Hoskina and Vivian, have been making things unpleasant for sly grog sellers iv Westport and the neighborhood. The presiding Magistrate, Mr Broad, inflicted fines varying from £1 to £5 only, notwithstanding a remark by Inspector Feast that at Kiitnara the penalty was fixed at £30.

G. P. Hunter, one of the surveyors engaged, by the Government from Sydney> has levanted, being a defaulter to the extent of about £luOO, money entrusted to him to pay certain accounts due by the department. The matter is in the hatlds of the police, but up to the present time no trace of his whereabouts has been discovered,

Lecturing at Auckland the other day the Count de Zaba referred to the war, and said that he did not know bow the present disturbances in the East of Europe would end, but he asserted freely that Russia was disturbed and generally disorganised. Until Poland was free, or some large central power in Europe established in her place, Russia would never be kept in check, aud disturbances would go on first in one country and then in another . The Nelson Colonist of Saturday last says :— Operations are being extended and vigorously pursued in connection with the Golden Point mine, near Pictou, from which quartz covered with gold has been taken. Work in the tunnel is being proceeded with, and a tramway constructed to supersede the presont system of carrying the stuff to the mouth of the tuunel in wheelbarrows. A snaf fc is also about to be made at the nortliwest sido of the spur. It is stated that the directors of the P. and O. Company have it in contemplation to offer, on the expiry of their present contract for the conveyance of the Australian mails, to enter into a contract for a fortnightly service with a line of steamers of 4,000 tons burden, and to abandon King George's Sound as a coaling Btation, so as to exnedite the passage. We hear (says the Hawkcs Bay Herald) that it has been found impracticable to collect census papers from the Natives in this province. The collector, we are informed, has been out for about a fortnight visiting the different pahs, aud has returned to Napier without being able to get a single census paper filled up. Wherever he visited he found that the Natives had been persuaded that it was a movement to upset Sir George Grey's Government, and so they would have nothing to do with it. It is stated by a Wellington contemporary that great improvements in the way of draiuago and ventilation have been made in the Parliamentary Buildings, and that amongst other additions three bath rooms supplied with hot ami cold water will be at the disposal of honorable members. There is no mention of the large sheets of glas3 in the roof having been securely fixed, but with the memory of the narrow escape of the Hon Mr Barff fresh in their minds, it can hardly be supposed that the House Committee would omit such a very important provision. Our friends in. the North of Auckland appear to be getting anxious at the nonexpenditure of the £40,000 voted last session for works in that district. The New Zealand Herald gives the Government a gentle reminder as follows : — During the last session of Parliament a sum of £40,000 was voted for works in the North, as some measure of compensation for the smaller expense incurred in Auckland by the abolition of the provincial form of Government than in the South. The vote was supported by Southern members, as well as by those representing Auckland electorates, and gave satisfaction to the trustees of many Highway Boards. The trustees of our district Boards naturally expected that the money would be distributen soon after the prorogation of Parliament, so that the works to be executed by means of this money could be performed at a season of the year when earth cuttings could be done at the cheapest rate, aud the most satisfactory results produced. These Boards have waited in vain, and a good deal of anxiety is now being evinced respecting the money. Some fear that the Government do not intend to pay it, but to use it for railway purposes. This would evidently not be carrying out the intention of Parliament, and we cannot believe that the Government seriously intend to thus appropriate this sum of mpney.

A public meeting is to be held at Invercargill to consider the desirableness of fortifying Bluff Harbor against attack. A Northern contemporary learns that the Government are considering the question of; adopting the House system of numbering the police constables of the larger cities and suburbs. Two children met with violent deaths at Nelson the week before last. One a child of eighteen months' old, fell backwards into a camp oven full of scalding porridge. The other, an infant, was smothered in the shawl, in which it was wrapped, whilst beingcarried home one evening by its mother. At Queenstown a man named John Evans has been sentenced to three months' hard labor in Dunedin gaol for obtaining money under false pretences from two poor boys who travel through the country obtaining money for the support of their crippled father by oxercising their musical t?.lent6, which are not of a mean order. Evans picked them up on the road and borrowed their earnings on the representation that be would repay it on reaching Queenstown, where he bad a banking account, which of course he had not. The Tnapcka Times states that on May

6th Messrs Gunn and Spence's coalpit at

Lawrence completely subsided. The shaft has been giving way more or less for the past two years, but no immediate danger was apprehended until within the gast few days, when the tifabers gave wafiting oi the coming catastrophe, which took place at the tune stated. The whole of the plant, Consisting of trucks, tramways, turning-tables, &c, was buried in the pit.

That was a lucky venture of Mr Rhodes's of Christdhurcb. Barely three weeks ago he purchased at auction at £9 an acre (which was then considered an extravagant price) the Sherwood state in South Canterbury from the Messrs Parker. Mr Rhodes carried into effect the intention of the previous owners, and had the estate, which comprises 6,500 acres, cut up into small farms, which were submitted to auction at Timaru. There were buyers from all parts of the Middle Island, including many from Otago. The lowest price was £7 an acre: the highest £90 10s; and the average a little over £13. Thus an outlay of £27,000 turned him in, scarcely three weeks after £87,566— a handsome profit truly,

The Dunedirt Morning Herald has the following sensible remarks: — "The fatal results which follow the practice of taking infants from their mothers and committing them to the Industrial School should be a warning that the laws of nature cannot be violated without the usual consequences taking place. It is grim irony when the form of faith under which the infant is to be brought up is, in the terms of the Act, laid down. This clause ia seldom called for, because the infant dies when deprived of motherly care. We are informed that several infants bate died at the Industrial School from this cause during the past twelve months, and that a remonstrance has been made to the Government by the inspectors. This use of the Industrial School was never contemplated, and it is altogether beside its functions. We do not find fault with those who administer the law. because the special circumstances which may attend each case leave no option to the magistrate. But it is well that the fact should be widely known, in order that those who superintend charitable relief may apply it in a direction where it is so much needed."

The following notification appears in the Saruoau Times of Bth March: — "On 22nd February, at she York Hotel, suddenly, after a lolig and lingering illness, all ' British Claims previous to 1876. Deeply regretted by a large circle of friends."

The skeleton of a woman, lately sold to satisfy a claim for rent against the estate of a country physician, had inscribed upon it: " Miss Ida Montagu, aged 22 years, died of grief, 25th May, 1856. Her deathbed re quest; 'Honor your sanctum with my bones.' "

It is stated that Mr J. C. Crawford, who for very many years has been Resident Magistrate at Weliington, will shortly resign and proceed to England.

The method of making money is now ascertained to be on mathematical principles. The moneyed men of the present day have for the most part succeeded by producing really valuable articles, and adding to industry honesty. These principles hold good all over the world, and the success attending the introduction of those invaluable medicines, " Ghollaii's Great Indian Cures," into New Zealand is another instance of proof of the assertion. The public have recognised tbc worth of these Indian Medicines, -and the cure effected by their use are extraordinary. Get testimonials a,v,(l the medicines o£ the Chemists.

First quarter, 1878. £ blokitika ... 38,124 jreymouth 72,560 iVestport ... 568 First quarter 1877. £ 27,027 20,403 175

:okitika, ; . ..■;-,.. .23,642 reymouth ... 44,888 festport ... 8,360 28,47: 32,481 9,06;

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Permanent link to this item

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Bibliographic details

West Coast Times. TUESDAY, MAY 21, 1878., West Coast Times, Issue 2849, 21 May 1878

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West Coast Times. TUESDAY, MAY 21, 1878. West Coast Times, Issue 2849, 21 May 1878

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