PROSPECTS OF DENILIQUIN.
From the Pastoral Times, March 1st.
THERE are many here who consider that Deniliquin is not making that progress which all, more or less, desire. "The times are bad," is the general cry. Professional men complain, tradespeople complain, our mechanics and labouring population shake their heads, and "fear that Deniliquin has seen its best day." It is not, however, our duty to grumble, or to support those who are gifted with that peculiar privilege which Englishmen enjoy, nor do we attempt to disguise tine fact that Deniliquin, like all our
colonial towns, is undergoing a crisis. The reasons must be obvious to those who think for themselves,
and who knew the quasi town some five years since, when it was composed of a couple of huts. Money was then abundant, chiefly in consequence of the large amount of overland traffic, and from the fact that there were few persons to share in the liberal (nay, almost profuse) expenditure of the overlanders. This alone reveals one reason why the "old hands" are sighing for the good old times. That the cattle trade in the past year has fallen off very mate-
rially cannot for one moment be questioned, but that this is to be the case in future seasons must not be admitted until we have some further proof than is at present afforded us. Every run in these districts, scarcely one excepted, has been overstocked for the last three seasons, and although unusually large quan- tities of fat stock have, of late, been despatched for sale from the neighbouring stations, yet the prices which the cattle reached in the Victorian markets were not such as to justify the stock-owners in pur- chasing any large amount of store stock. The cause of this depression in the stock market is chiefly be- cause the newly passed land law in Victoria has spread universal distrust among the holders of stations in that colony. The settlers dare not invest where their holdings may be "adopted" by the State in
six or twelve months, so that Deniliquin positively suffers in consequence of the rabid cry for extinguish- ing the squatter in the neighbouring colonies. Such are
some of the remote causes that, in a pecuniary sense, affect us in this town. But there are others, over which we have more immediate control than the sickening democracy of Victoria, viz., the intolerant, exclusive, and bigotted democracy of our own colony, and the senseless hate which actuates the leaders— Messrs. Cowper and Robertson—in their legislating for the extinction of the station holders in this pas- toral country. The land for hundreds of miles here is of such a description that it cannot be used pro-
fitably for farming purposes, yet there is not a Crown lessee within the area referred to who does not feel his tenure insecure. As a sequence, then, he cannot employ labour. Hundreds of able-bodied men wan- der through the interior unemployed, for the reason stated—that station holders dare not make extensive
improvements in order that others may reap the benefit of them. Pursuing the inquiry further, as to the cause of our commercial depression, we can see here no public works promoted. Mr. W. Macleay, some fortnight or so since, in the Sydney Assembly, prayed that £10,000 might be voted for the erection of a bridge over the Murrumbidgee, but Mr. Cowper succeeded in negativing the proposition, be- cause, as he alleged, the money was required to make and repair the roads in districts nearer to Sydney ! Mr. Cowper's policy, evidently, is to distribute the colonial revenue in proportions inversely as the popu- lations are distant from Sydney. Returning again to the immediate cause of our commercial depression, we find that we have been living too fast during the last three years in Deniliquin. Our masonic lodges and our hospitals afford us strong proofs for arriving at that conclusion ; but as the hospitals have been merged into one, and our masonic lodges seem in- clined to follow the example, we shall not attempt to mar so good an object while matters so much desired are in the course of being consummated. There are, however, still more immediate causes of our want of prosperity. We do not create any wealth here ; we gather large sums of money, the chief bulk of which is sent to Melbourne for articles, many of which we might ourselves produce. The money spent for abominable wines, in the guise of port and sherry, brandy, drugged ale, and whisky (?) which no Scotchman or Irishman would drink in his own country ; the large sums transmitted for these lux- uries (?) to other countries, would rather astonish our economists were an estimate made and published. Still we are in a position to produce better articles than those we now use, and which are imported from England and other distant parts of the globe. Surely we can cultivate the vine ! We may remark en passant that we saw on Tuesday last several hundred- weight of grapes arrive at Deniliquin from Red Bank (twenty-four miles distant). They were samples which the vine growers of Bordeaux or the Rhine would pronounce unique. We can, if we are determined, be supplied with these luxuries, provide them for ourselves. We can grow the grape to per- fection, and from these we can make wine, as others
do ; we can distil better whisky than we get imported ; we can "make" brandy on the spot ; and already we have established a brewery for providing ourselves with better ale at four shillings per gallon than we purchase from Melbourne at sixteen shillings.
We have so many resources of wealth, did we but look around us, that we might be as prosperous as any people in these colonies. Our rivers and lagoons teem with such fish as would invite the appetite of our greatest epicureans ; but we import all compounds in the shape of preserved ling, oysters, lobsters (?), &c., which bear no com- parison with our bream, cod, Murray lobsters, perch, yabbys, shrimps, &c. ; and were we not strongly in favour of free trade we would advocate that potted fish in particular should be excluded from our mar-
kets. Wc have felt it our duty to call attention to these sources of wealth now lying dormant. The overland trade, upon which we have attained our present position, may not be so fruitful to the town as it has hitherto been, but Deniliquin, from its central position, must always command a large proportion of the intercolonial stock trade ; at the same time it behoves those who look to the steady and permanent advancement of the district, to try and discover other sources of wealth thau the overland stock trade.
THE SUBMARINE CABLE.—The Government having obtained from the Launceston Marine Board the use of the tug Tamar, conditionally on paying for fuel and wages, that vessel was despatched on Tuesday after- noon for the purpose of undcrrunning the cable. The end of the cable had been already recovered and buoyed by Mr. Savage in East Bay ; and this having been taken on board, the wire was lifted for about twelve miles, and, with the exception of the part near the shore, it was found to be in good order, shells and coral having attached themselves to it. The injured portion having been removed and replaced by sound cable, communication, we are informed, was restored between the Tamar Heads and Circular Heads.— Launceston Examiner, March 2.