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2 corrections, most recently by peter-macinnis - Show corrections

MEN THAT I SAW AT THE DIGGINGS.

\VB extract another passage of Mr. Jack John- son's lucubrations, commenced in our last :

*. The gold fever is more frightful here than the railway mania was at home, Fred ; nuggets versus scrip-Mount Alexander against Capel Court ; prospecting in the one case, surveying .in the other ; twenty thousand ounces from the Mount-a hundred < thousand pounds subscribed capital for a line from the Isle of Dogs to Timbuctoo ; a hundred drays wanted to proceed immediately to the Bendigo-a hundred levellers required to proceed immediately, to the Midland Counties," - - ' ' ' '

" A comparison that won't hold. You've mistaken a few points of misty resemblance, ' and lost yourself in the ranges of fancy ; you're bushed Jack. What say you, if we cut the shop for the nonce, and have a quiet yarn, just as if the ninth of August last had never been, and Bal-

larat never heard of."  

" With all my heart. " I'll be the Princess of The Thousand and One Australian Nights' Entertainments ; you the Sultan, with a short pipe for a chibouque, a blanket for a dais, tea for sherbet, his Excellency for Grand Vizier, the specials for Janissaries, and yonder slush light with a piece of check shirt for a wick, an Alad- din's Wonderful Lamp."

" Wild as ever ! confounding time, habits, and countries."  

"Leave 'dates' to the Arabians, since they   are fond of them. You were talking of home a little while ago. I'll rub the lamp of * imagi- nation.* Lo ! the gold fields meit away, and in their place come long interminable lines of bricks and morter ; drays give place to * Hansom's pa- tent safeties' ; Latrobian roads to railways ; the tent changes to a four-story house in B*ker street, and the blanket at its entrance becomes a street door-grained mahogany, and ornamen- ted withabrass plate, bearing the inscription - Mr. John Johnson, the father of J-rck Johnson, your humble servant. My father, Fred, never understood me. He was taciturn and severe ; knew how to acquire money and make the most of it-qualities that I was totally deficient i >. Possessed of little education himself, he con- ferred on me a double quantum, and could not understand how that which had cost him so much, produced so little-a fact I was cognizant of myself, but could not explain. My mother said that I was clever ; my father said, that the cost was more than its worth Altercations grew Frrqnet.it, and I, one foggy morning in No- vember, found myself rattling down Thames street, on my way to Port Phillip. You know what it is to say ' good bye ;' how like Miebeth's . amen J* it sticks i' th' throat. You know then how ill feeling fades ; how indifference turns to friendship, and friendship into love; how the voice trembles and the hand lingers in its fare- well sinke. Emigration is death to Old World associations, and a bursting forth of resuscitated hopes in a new sphere. 1 went abroad, dropped down the Thames, felt queer at the North Fore- land -the Cockney's Bay of Biscay,-and be- tween strong mental emotion and sea-sickness, was obliged to go to bunk. Once out of the chops of the channel, 1 was all abroad in the full sense of the word. A four months' voyage seems like a dream. We shot albatross, killed sharks, hooked boneta, picked up occasionally a cripple of a flying fish, saw a whale spouting in the distance, got heartily tired of pea soup, bouilli, junk, and otiVr such delic-rcies ; remember a great deal of shouting about tacks and sheets, and re- peated orders to* belay'; believe I was pitched out o'bed on sundry occasions, but being very sleepy, did'nt mind it; and finally, was awoke up one fine morningin March, with the glorious cry of A ustralia. We had a narrow escape at the heads, but finally anchored in safety in Corio B.ry. Looking at my letters of introduction-I found several to parties in Melbourne, which town a fellow passenger assured me, was about sixty .miles in the interior, and that my best plan would be to stop at Port Phillip, which was a flourishing town, and as big as Plymouth. One letter was directed simply to South Australia, one to Swan River, and another to Port Essington, eaeh of which I was particularly reminded to deliver by hand, on my arrival, which I pro- mised to do. I hid formed no definite idea as to the position of Van Dientan's Land, but would have stoutly maintained that Botany Bay was an integral portion of it, and Sydney its capital. [ heard of Adelaide, and had seen repeatedly advertisements in the Timesof ships to that port. Swan Uiver was familar to me ; I had seen letters from parties residing there ; knew two or three who had gone there, and resolved to visit them after seeing Melbourne, even should they be fifty

miles off.

" Come ! come ! draw it mild. Jack"

'* Sir, a fact-look at the address on your letters. I never knew anything about Australia, except from a threepenny emigrant's guide, and a pla- card posted on one of the Paddington Omnibuses, advertising " Gentlemen's improved paletots, Codringtons, and D'Orsays manufactured from the choicest Australian Merino Fleeces, made to order for thirty-five shillings, fit warranted." The only additional information that I remember, I got from a tailor in Oxford-street, v hen he pre- sented me his bill-he told me when I informed him where 1 was going, that a great deal of wool was imported into England from Port Phillip, and that a sheep's head might be got for half the price charged in London for it-that the natives were very savage, but the climate most extraordi- nary, disease being wholly unknown-and.elderly people regained their youth within a few months' of their arrival, so tint you see Fred, ridiculous as my ideas of the geographical position of the colonies were, they are easily accounted for, wher. you know the source .whence they were derived,

but 1 am'blessed if,you 'know much belt.ertyóiir'-> self-did'ut you have ii Yo* with the captain when

her anclrprcd jüu.GfekJng ^Harbourf»« Did'ntrypjií;; insist on;being landed in -Port Phillip'Ptf j"., 5,Ji«w

..Never l^tis all fudge.", , ¡ -,,< ,- «j, «t.1 " Well I've heard fifty people- corroborate K, who heird you swear at the captain, when you went on boant the, steamer-you being at the

ti tije under the impression that «-you were going' . up therGulf of Carpentaria." < '«Î

" I tell you,'*, 'tis a stupid invention from begin-r« ning to end." f ¡ i

.. 'Tis no matter-don't get riled, Fred-I got

to the wharf at Melbourne, stepped-ashore, and < not knowing where I was going, stood still ,withf my hands in my pockets. My first idea, was, that,

I had been sailing about for a precious long time, . and by some mistake or other, hid landed, at some country town on the coast of England. Blue shirts, and cabbage trees soon dispelled the illusion. Eh !" 'tis a queer feeling to stand for the first time in your life, on the shores, of a foreign land-friendless, unknown, uncared for, a desolation fell upon-me, my heait seemed to grow bigger and bigger. I felt then for the first

time, that I had indeed bidden good bye to all,, that'was ever dear to me-parents, friends, com-, - panions, and associates, and-" >, ,,

" And . pretty little blue eyed maiden'-out with it Jack, and make a clean breast of it."

Jack remained silent-my allusion had touched ' a tender cl'iord-it was made at haphazard-but

the random shot had told-I endeavored to dtoert <

the current of his thoughts, for it is( very, awk- , ward to see a person pull np suddenly in the > midst of a communicative vein, and relapse'into

silence. t "T

.. You fo'vrd your letters of, introduction of great,, avail to yon, Jack P"

"I went through the ordinary routine, pre-' sented the missive«, saw it opened, was asked my

prospects, the amount of capital I hid brought, <. was assured that that with perseverance, a young

man of my character, and ability, would ,be sure , to succeed-should feel happy, if possible, to ad- , vanee my interests in any way, knew of nothing . that would be suitable, just at the present time,

but should anything turn up, the letter of intrp- . duction would be as good as a reference, and that perhaps it would be prudent to retain it. Good morning-Mr. Johnson, 1 think your name is beg pardon, but have so many things of that nature, that one is apt to forget the very names'.

Another gentleman told me that it was almost,, useless for a young man without capital to stay

in town, waiting for a situation ; the bush was . the best place-but parties recently, arrived, foolishly adhering to old associations, remained in town until they spent their money." ,

" Was I to go shepherding," I asked.

.' There are many, talented, educated, men In the bush," replied he ; .' one th «t I know well is

the son of an English baronet-another of a , major-plenty of University men, and more learn- ing than the colony can boast of in any other de-

partment."

.. I was dumb-stricken-nor did the fact that so much learning was employed in uihng a flock of sheep, at all solace me. There is a fearful waste, and a fearful want of education here, Fred."

.' And in England, too, Jack, there ¡3 a glut of superfluous learning, elustei ing about dingy coffeehouses,chid in thread-bare suits,and feeding upon slurred newspapers,, torn periodicals, and greasy magazines-thousands of young men, a day's meals behind hand, and no prospect of a crumb for the morrow-attenuated gentlemen, who have inn down the Times advertisement column of " Wanted" as their forlorn hope ; men who read, and talk of morals, philosophy, science, esthetics, high art, &c, and yet cannot turn their talents into a pennyworth of bread. In this colony there is the bush always as a resource -at home-the workhouse. Those lean visaged, coffee-drinking, absorbers of intellectutlity, would jump for joy at the prospect of a week's rations."

" All that is very true, 1 dare say, but does not affect what I said in the slightest degree. I ob- jected to engaging in pastoral pursuits, and kept myself very select, and respectable, in Melbourne, until I found gentility to be a very lean profession, and my pockets empty-still resolved not to be a shepherd, I took a situation ashutkeeper. Holloa ! what's that blaze-see how the people are running"

-and off went Jack, lielterskelter, to see how a ' Commissioner could burn down a grog-shop.

It is said that the inscription, Liberty, Prater nity( Equality," which is now being removed from the public buildings of France, should be replaced by a new motto, " Infantry, Cavalry,

Artillery." «

AN AMFRICAN EDITOR-Ho is a dangerous . man to be trifiVd with. The grand hickory-stick r he twirls in his hand would be enough, with his dare-devil lo«k. to frighten most persons; but when we state tlt.it in the depth of the pocket of the remarkable check-coat that he wears he con- ceals one of the most beautiful " persuaders" ever manufactured by Colt, we are satisfied he will be a terror to all evil-doers. We should also state that generally he is occupied doing out-door busi- ness, but that on every Saturday until one o'clock P.M., he is always at the office, perfectly ready and willing to give any and every satisfaction for the articles he publishes. - Boston Gazette.

SOMETHING LIKE SIIVTH RKISBV.NH.- III a late speech before the Canadian House of assembly,

the Hon. Provincial Secretary incidentally re- , marked that a friend had just given him a graphic account of his travels in the muddy county of Guysborough.-" He was waddling through the mud, and seeing a hat in his way, stooped to pick it up, when lo ! a head was dis- closed to view ; seizing hold of tin« head, he was startled with the exclamation of ' Stop ! slop ! be careful what you're about there's a horse under me.'"-(great laughter).

TUB MORETON BAY COURIER is published every

Saturday morning. The terms of subscription are 8s. per quarter, or us. (Jd. if paid in advance : the quarters ending 31 st March, 30th June, 30th September, and 31st December, in each year respectively, at which reriods only can subscribers resign by giving due noticPj and paying the amount due to the end of ti c current quarter. Persons desirous of subscril - ing during the currency of the quarter will only be charged from the date of their commencing. Each advertisement will be charged at the rate of 3s. an inch, and Is. for every additional inch, each insertion ; the number of insertions must be specified on each advertisement, or they will be continued until countermanded by a written notice. Advertisements from non-subscribers' must be paid for previous to insertion.

AGENTS ' l(

IPSWICH-Mr. W. Warren.

DRAYTON-Mr. W. Handcock ' '., WARWICK-Mr. H. E. Shaiiklin. ' ' s

Printed and , published by the proprietor,

JAMBS SWAN, at the General Trinting Offitte,

^eorge-street.jNorth Brisbane, in 'the colony, w, New South'Wal«'. * ' , ", " S'?\.

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