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GGLDFIELDS-ESPERANCE .AILWAY. 0---'--~----- TREATMENT OF NORSEMAN AND E]SPERANCE. S (By W. Patterson.) As far back as the early part of I89,c9 there was a strong party. btlh in 'Es perance and Norseman who were using their ultmost endeavors to induce the Government to construct a line of rail way from Esplerance to Norsemian. The *first public meeting in reference to taking active measures in the nmat'cr was held in the Esperance Hotel on Sunday, February 8, in thaat year. The proceedings, thor:gh very. enthusiastic. w .ere somewhat extravagant in so far as the requests that were to be made to the Government were concerned. First, there was the railhtay, which was re quired to be constructed without delay, then- special graiits to the roads board and municipality, extension of the. jetty, and various other matters. Es perance at that time..was "booming," and hundreds of people were arriving from the eastern colonies; indeed. so overcrowded was the town that the ac commodation at the hotels and board ing liouses was inadequate for the large number who -were cohtinually arriv-. ing, and men, uiWomen, and children were 'obliged to camp on the beach. This influx of population was due to the glowing reports that were -being, published in the eastern jourinals re garding the rich discoveries that were being made at Norseman and Dundas. However at the meeting referred to it was decided to send two delegates to Perth to riterview Sir John Forrest re garding the requirement's' set forth. Mr. Thoumas Edwards, chairman or the newly-formned municipality, and AMr. J. R. A. Connolly, as representa tive of the roads board, were aplpointect as delegates, and proceeded to Albany by the s.s. McGregor the same after noon..? . At Perth. Sir John Forrest listeneo very attentively to the various matters brought under- his notice, and refer ring to the r'ailway said: - "At the pre sent time the Esperance-Norsema). railway was outside the ranve of prac. tical 'politics, and when the gold re turns from NorsemTin justified the con struction of the line the Government would not be averse to constructing.it." Regarding the other matters the delc gates. succeeded in obtaining grants -for the iiunicipality 'and' roads board,

and a small, sum! fo6r ini'proviements to tlie jetty. Alrtcughl " the inter view was soinewhat diippoltitimi,? g the people were lioieful, 'nd felt assured that the returns from Norseman -vould: speedily jus'ify the construction of the railway. The Norseman field at that time was only in the p:ospectang stage, but the results from, the few chtms that were worki ng Were remarkably good. A large number of properties . have been f.oated in England aiid; Adelaide. and soare hundreds of thou sands of pounds were beinig expended in development work, and the rich spe cimens " briught to Esperance and '. Adelaide from;n the field were regarded`; as equal to any discoveries front Cool-. gardie or Hannans. After the 'retun: of the deputation from Perthb railway leagues were formed at Norseman and Esperance, and the steady and con-..-. tinued.progress that was being m.ade.: was frot i time' to time -brought under-.'_` the notice of the Government, but all efforts to secure the ra.iway were fu tile. The Forrest Ministry, a:thougih thet:y had not definitely proamis, Zd the line held out sufici.nt hopes to justify the people in belicv:rng that the line would ., .sooner or later form part of their policy,. and as a consequence a large amount of private c,.ital was expunded in. Sboth Esuerance and. Norseman in the erection of w.ai'ehouscs. shops, and neat vil:a residences. and allotmenits of land in the principal thoroughfares. commanded city prices. The Govern ment also expended thousands of' pounds in the erect on o' a Custom-2:' house, extension of the jetty, an&i: other public bmuid ngs. all leading to the assumption that the railway vmust-; very soon come. In Norsamna.n the:. same policy was pursued, and it a de tailed account of thec jwublic imoney expended on these districts was fi?va?l able, it would be found that more ,has been so expended than it would cost to .constru'ct the Espera.lce-Goldfields.::= ra.ilway. " ::Regaidiig the lpronmi;e of Sir John Foorrest that wheivn the t'eturns from 'Noriseman 'jst fied a railw?ay it would reccive consideration, the following availab'e returns will conc:us.vely shaw that, notwithstanding the adverse cone ditions, the gold yield from Norsenitan amply justifies the present Goveri-`:I. meut in giving us the Esperance- ` "; G Adfields railway. In 1897 16,986 tons:i were treated for 19,284. oz.; 1898, 30,928 tons for 36,798 oz.; 1899, 59,370 tons for 44,213 c. ; 1900oo, 49,015 tons for 41,084 01oz. ; ?q0o, 38,373 tons for...,;"' 37,084 oz. The returns for 19o02 are-? not 'coimplete, but ivill doubtless be equally satisfactory.' In" the face of these - indisputable facts, I would ask: the most prejudiced -person whether.: { the Government can very much longer. refuse to give us this railway. There are mines in the Dundas district of phenomenal richness, which, under ex-. isting circumstances, do not pay to work. At Buldania, 22 miles from Norseman, which ,is -now.unfortunately practically deserted, there are clain~s, that have been proved to be of the value of.3 oz. to the ton. This is not. an assay value either, for the stone has been carried by camel team from uul dcana to the Norseman Government battery, and small parcels have return ed that yield; vet it does not pay poor men to work these piropositio-ns. There ale other loralities equally promising .which have been closed down for the same reason.

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