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NEWS AND SOTES.
The steamer "Ocean" which left this port on the 5th of June for Sydney is, we understand, in quarantine. It behoves our ductor to keep a sharp look out.
The arrangements mide by Messrs. Adcock Brother« with the Oriental Rankins Corporation for issuing drafts, not only upon their branch, but upon their London and Hongkong houses, certainly, to our minds, seems to savour of the early estab- lishment of a branch of their Bank at Port Darwin. The rapid increase in our com- mercial transactions during the past three or four years seems to require additional monetary exchanging power, and any new institution of the kind opening here, having branches( in the eastern settlement*, would command support. And'such a time as the present, when numbers are engagirg in sugar growing, when our waste lands are being rapidly taken up by stock aud station holders, and when our mining is showing positive proofs of its forging ahead should be favorable for the investment of capital. Many fine mining properties have fallen into decay and ruin for want of a little capital judiciously applied at the right moment. But pending the establishment of a branch an agency, such as we have, will' tend to keep down excessive charges.
In the month of February last Mr. W. C. Davies, of Adelaide, forwarded several samples of timber from the Warrabarra forest to Mr. Knight to be tested and tested by the ants of the Territory. The specimens consisted of red gum, blue gum, spotted gum, and box, and were buried in the ground for four months. Samples of Weat Australian jarrah and karri were included, together with a piece of our native pine, and "gatty," from Singapore. On being examined last Saturday all the woods except the native pine and gatty were found to be riddled by the white ants, and had they been left much longer they would have totally disappeared. This is another proof that the timber usually imported here is utterly use- less for building purposes.
We are glad to learn that Mr. Vandyke and his party have decided upon remaining in the Territory. They came here under the impression that, as land was being given away, they might get a small selection of from 500 to 1000 acres on which they could settle. This not being the case, they have decided upon selecting and settling down amongst us. We are glad of this, as we certainly require a few families of position and respectability in Port Darwin audits suburbs. We hope the authorities in the .Land Office will render them every assis-
As large tracts of land are being taken up for pastoral purposes, mainly by Victorian and New South Wales capitalists, it there- fore behoves the Government to see that a sufficient quantity of land is retained as reserves for the aboriginal natives. How are they to live if every acre of land is alienated. South Australia has ever been mindful of her obligations to the native race. On the Peninsula, known as " Cox's," over 100,000 acres of land have been given away for sugar growing purposes, and as yet we have not heard of any suitable provision being made for the aboriginal. Surely some well-watered spot should be set aside for their use. If this is not done we fear the Wagite tribe will be hunted down as they have been in Northern Queensland.
On the ninth day of June poor Alick Grey Wood, a policeman stationed at the Shackle, died of dysentry. He had been ill for some time, hence the necessity arose for him to be comfortably housed. But it was not so. The poor fellow lay night after night with cold easterly winds blowing-blowing, as it were, underneath his poor emaciated ribs the wind literally howling through his dwelling, with no kindly mother near to put warm clothing around him, or to stop up the gaps in the ant-eaten boarding of his miser- able quarters. And then, what next ? The usual coroner's notice that his body may be buried, " given under my hand this 10th day of June, 1881. Signed C. W. Nash, JP., Coroner," closes this miserable fiasco. As a policeman said, " Poor Woods has gone !" The question arises,-Had this man who was sent np to the Shackle the reasonable quarters that a policeinun is entitled to ? The miserable shanty, known as the police quarters, was fully described to us by Mr. V. V. Brown, who was at the Shackle two or three weeks before poor Woods breathed for the last time. Mr. Brown said he would rather sleep out in the open air than in such a shanty. The police quarters in town are comfortable enough ; but then they are open to the gaze of the passer by, and if the inmates dwelling therein are not comfortable it is their own fault But who is responsible? Certainly the head of the department, and why he should have closed his eyes so long is a mystery to most folk. In conclusion, we think had the inquest been held in Europe a Coroner's jury would have returned
a somewhat different verdict
A few weeks ago the Revd. C. C. Elcum the chaplain to the Bishop of Adelaide passed a few days with us, and his eloquent address will long be remembered. Sound temperate advice was given to those of his hearers who had no church, to be contented for a little while and wait patiently. The reverend gentleman alluded to many whom he noticed not spending the sabbath after- noon in a manner befitting Christian people. This plain outspokenness pleased his hearers; it was something so different to what they had been accustomed to. He visited the school, examined the children, and we had much pleasure in publishing his report. Why cannot our regular missionary pastor do the same. A call once a month would please the children and their parents, and would do him no harm, but on the con- trary it might do much good.
His Worship stated his views pretty plainly on Tuesday in the case of the with- drawal of a cheque by defendant Beed. It is a warning that in future will be noticed, for we hear that if Reed'does not pay the cheque action will be taken against the Bank
As we hear the Inspector of Police is going up country next week it is to be hoped he will pay some attention to the Shackle police station.
Our readers will notice in another column a letter from "A Seven Tears Subscriber," expressing approval of the short article on '' Our Annual Visitation," in last week's issue. Our action in the natter has met
with universal approval with the exception of the Inspector of Police and the Doctor who should be a Protector of Aborigines.
As we were going to press we received information that Thomas J. Osborne, of Pine Creek, died on Wednesday afternoon. He had just been appointed postmaster. -%.
Another discovery of alluvial gold 18" re- ported 12 miles from Bridge Creek.
The amount of gold shipped by the E. 8. and A. C. Bank :-Per Wm. M'Kinnon, 3288 ounces ; per Brisbane, for Hongkong, 601