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MISCELLANEOUS.*

Viceregal and Ministerial.— His Excel lency the Governor is now at Robe. The Com missioner of Public Works with other members of the Drainage Select Committee have been on

a visit to the South-Eastern District to inspect the works there. The other Ministers have been in town preparing for the reassembling of Parliament. The Commissioner of Crown Lands and the Treasurer leave Adelaide to-day with a view of proceeding to Salt Creek in the J.H.P., which is to steam up the Coorong in order to bring back the members of the Drainage Com mittee. Salt Creek will probably be reached on Friday. We presume the members of the Committee will be in Adelaide by Tuesday next. The Value ok Money.— The whole of the Banks in Adelaide are notifying that the rate of interest on deposits lodged with them has been chanced to 3$ per cent, when lodged for 12 months, and 3 per cent, for half that term. No allowance is in future to be allowed for the period of three months. The discount on trade bills of 95 days' currency has been reduced to 7 per cent., while four months will be taken at 2 per cent. more. The rate for overdrafts is unaltered. By circular the Banks have apprised the public of their intention to charge the fol lowing tariff of exchange rates within the colony :— On drafts issued, bills discounted, and bills collected, J per cent.; orders or cheques. 6d. for £50 or under, and the same amount for each additional £50 or fractional part thereof. Mosey-Orjders on Germany. — The facilities which Mr. Krichauff, M.P., has been persistently endeavouring to obtain, on behalf of the German population, for the transmission of money to Germany through the Post-Office are at last made available by a proclamation appearing in the Gazette. The following are named as places in Ger many on which money-orders may be drawn : — Prussia, Saxony, Mecklenburg-Schwerin, Mecklenburg-Strelitz, Hesse, Oldenburg, Brunswick, Saxe-Weimar, Saxe-Meiningen, Saxe-Altenburg, Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, Anhalt, Schwartzburg ? Rudolstadt, Schwartzburg Sonderhausen, Waldeck, Reusa, Schaumburg Iippe, Iippe, Lubeck, Bremen, Hamburg, without being limited to any list of offices. Other regulations as to matters of detail are published; but for the most part the rules will be precisely similar to those applied to all transactions of the kind for the safe transmission of the amounts sent, and the security of the Post-Office authorities. The Glenelg Railway.— We see that active operations have been commenced on this line, which is now fenced across the South Park Land3 and nearly as far as Goodwood. The delivery of the gum sleepers has also been com menced, several piles being on the ground. The Slate Trade. — The business of the Willunga Quarries has greatly improved of late, and several drayloads of slate are brought into Adelaide every week. Several large stone water tanks of excellent quality have recently gone out of these quarries. A trade is about being opened between some mercantile men of Vic toria and the slate owners of Willunga. A pro ject has been started in Adelaide for bringing stone from the Stoneyfell Quarry, about four miles to the east of the city, by means of a wire rope tramway. New Organ.— Mr. J. W. Wolff, of Wakefield street, has just completed a new organ suited for a place of worship. The manuel contains four and a half octaves, but the compass of the instrument is greatly extended by the use of tho stops and pedals. The deepest note is what is known as a 16-feet tone, or CCC, being produced by. an eight-feet stopped pipe. There are six stops, namely, fifteenth, flute, principal, open diapason, stopped diapason, and the coupler. The tone of the instrument is remarkably full and resonant, surpassing that of the most powerful harmonium, and the cabinet work of the front has a very neat appearance. Large Boiler.— Mr. A. Jones, of Bank street, has just completed to the order of Captain W. Randell for his river steamer Black Swan an immense multitubular marine .boiler, capable of supplying an engine of at least 50 horse-power nominal. It is 7 feet 6 in diameter, 11 feet long, and weighs 10 tons; ? is provided with two fire-boxes, contains 86 return tube3, and is surmounted by a dome about four or five feet high. The boiler is at present mounted on one of Messrs. Hill, Mills, & Co.'s carriages ready to start for its destination — Mannuni — where the vessel is waiting to receive it. Corrugating Machine.— We recently had an opportunity of seeing a steam corruga ting apparatus at work oh the premises of Mr. James Brown, Light-square. The machinery was the first of the kind im ported into this colony, . and three jrears ago was used by*Messrs. Gray & Shroder' for- mani- pulating galvanized iron. Mr. Brown, however, merely usesit for black sheet iron, which can afterwards be so coloured as to stand the rain. It is almost as durable as the ordinary roofing iron, and the coating which is put on is said to reduce the temperature by about 20°. The machine with all its appendages weighs about nine tons, and it requires three men to turn out eight tons per day, two sheets being worked off at a time. At a trial of speed made a few days ago, 16 sheets were dealt with in five minutes. The process is very simple, and there is a brisk demand for the material, which comes into the province in its plain state duty free. Medical Attendance.— There has been, it seems, a ring meeting on the Wallaroo Mines to consider the question of medical attendance. The local paper writes:—*' It is said that a view is gaining ground amongst the men that there should be no regularly-appointed mine sur geons, but that every miner should be allowed to name what doctor in the locality he would like to pay to, and that the sum deducted from the man's wages should, be paid to him. The miners argue that by this plan they would have the advantage of the very beat medical talent in the neithbaurhood, and the ordinary spirit of rivalry, common to both trades and professions, would be elicited.' ? Curiosity.— On Tuesday Mr. Hackett, of Rundle-street, on having a bagT-f guano opened, was surprised to see embedded in the. substance an object which bore a grotesque resemblance to a human hand and forearm. Mr. Water house, the Curator oit the Adelaide Museum, however, pronounced it to be that of a largo South American sloth. The hand was about 11 inches long and the fingers five inches. There was no thumb, the fifth finger taking its place, being as lengthy as the other digits. The guano came from the Chincha Islands, and probably the relic was carried there by a large bird. Some time ago the body of a small monkey was found embedded in a quantity of guano, and bones of other animals are not unfrequently met with. The ammonia in the guano is a great preservative against decay, and fossils are by no means uncommon where it abounds.

Wayzgoose. — The annual excursion and dinner of the employe's in the printing depart ments of the Register took place on Saturday, March 23. Although a alight shower fell, it did not materially interfere with the comfort of the excursionists. Shortly after 10 o'clock one of Hill b Co.'s large busses, with five horses, ?started from the Register office, conveying 25 passengers, and shortly after a private wagonette took a few more. The day not being a holiday, a number of employe's having to remain behind on acco'unt of the publication of the Evening Journal, and others having engagements else where, the attendance comprised nearly as many as could have been expected. The beauties of the Waterfall Gully, the spot selected, have been so often described, are so well known, and havebeen so largely patronised, that it isneedless to descant upon them. After lunch the company separated into detachments for exploring, quoit playing, and other pursuits. While rambling through the gully two of the party acted as good Samaritans to a youngster who met with rather a severe accident. It appears that a companion was engaged in the manufacture of what is known as a pea-blower out of a joint of bamboo. This he was trimming with a chopper on the fallen trunk of a tree, when another youngster, named Day, about seven years old, suddenly thrust forward his hand to steady the piece of wood, when he received the stroke on the right hand, nearly severing the forefinger. They bound up bis hand, poured into his ear a few words of friendly counsel, and sent the three lads home forthwith. At 4 o'clock the pleasure-seekers, to the number of 30, assembled at the Eagle-on-the-Hffl, where an excellent dinner was placed on the table by- Host Tighe, and to which the keen country air gave a relish. Mr. George Wilson, the Register Overseer, occupied the chair, and Mr, James Davidson the vice-chair. The toast of 'Success to the Register' was cordially honoured, the proposer referring in feeling terms to the severe illness of a le'aaing member of the literary department, and ex pressing a hope that the imorovement

in his health might be permanent. He also remarked upon the retirement of another member of the same department, wishing that every success might attend him in his new career, and that ' God might speed the plough.' The only guest present was Mr. John Foreman, who had been connected with the office for over 25 years, till advancing years and other causes necessitated his retirement. His health was proposed by one who had known him intimately for over 30 years, and all present joined in the hope that he might be spared to be present at many such gatherings. A number of songs varied the proceedings, and the company started for Adelaide soon after 8 o'clock, reaching the city in a little over an hour, after a day's thorough enjoyment. Masonic Table. — More than 10 years ago Mr. J. F. Stutely sent to the Society of Arts Exhibition in Adelaide, and afterwards sent to Melbourne for inspection there, a wonderful work of art in the form of a richly inlaid table of exquisite blending and workmanship. The article, which now belongs to his widow, and can be seen at the Blenheim Hotel, is about the size of an ordinary work-table, but its construc tion occupied the leisure of many years, during which a rare combination of patience, skill, and taste has been displayed. A description pub lished some time ago gives the following infor mation: — 'The base consists of a triangle cambered, displaying on the horns, as principal designs, the Doric, Ionic, and Corinthian colums, while in one of the segments between the horns there is shows a cypress tree in mala chite; the second shows the plumb, rule, level, and setting-maul; and the third contains a coffin, ' the emblem of mortality.' The pedestal, which displays some of the finest workmanship in the table, is sexagonal. On one face is shown the Bible, on a cushion, over which stands a figure emblematic of Hope, holding the cross in her left hand. On another face is the emblem of the brazen serpent, lifted on the cross, with the letter 'G' over it. On the third face are the six points of masonry, the emblem of Hope being repeated; while the fourth face shows the masonic key-stone. The fifth face displays the five points of masonry, surmounted by the emblem of Charity— a female figure, with one child in her arms, and another looking up beseechingly into her face; and the sixth face contains the alphabet of masonry, and, above it, the dove alighting on the earth after the flood. The top of the table, which is circular, and 21 inches in diameter, shows in the centre the emblem of the Grand Master of the Masonis Lodge, while the margin of the table displays the emblems of the different officers. The emblem of the Grand Master, it may be added, is enclosed within the six points of masonry, and encircled with a tesselated pavement, while the top of the table, between the centre ana the margin, is a blazoned star. The workmanship, as we have already said, is very elaborate and minute; and to show thab such is the case, it need only be men tioned that in one portion of the top of the table not more than a square inch in extent 25 separate pieces of stone may be counted. ? It is hardly necessary to add that the whole table consists of an enormous number of separate pieces of stone — black and white and variegated marble and malachite, &c— every single piece of which is cut and polished with great accuracy and taste, while the different colours are skilfully and effectively arranged.' We are told that an attempt is about being made to dispose of this work of art. Trawling.— This most interesting onslaught on the fish of the Gulf was attended with more success in capturing several curious specimens for the Museum than in securing those of an edible kind. In the first place, it must be stated that the whole of the undertaking was the work of amateurs, from the fabrication of the net itself to the modus operaiy&i of using it. The net may be easily described as a purse about 30 feet long, with an opening of about 12 feet by 20 inches, and this aperture is towed along the bottom of the sea, with the purse trailing far away astern. An intimation being sent to Mr. Waterhouse, the Curator of the Museum, he was early in attendance, and at 9 o'clock on Saturday, Feb. 17, last the boat started from the jetty. The wind was so light that very slow progress was made, but after half an hour the trawl had been over a tolerable distance, and was taken up. It was then found the gear for keeping open the mouth of the net had broken adrift, which was roughly repaired with the materials at hand, but during the remainderof the day the efficiency of the whole concern was very much impaired in consequence. It was only used over the section inside the Bell Buoy, and the edible fish caught amounted to a couple of bucketfuls of flathead, whiting, mullet, and mudfish. The flathead were extremely fine, and the others of excellent flavour. Mr. Water house was more fortunate, for every drag of the net brought up some fresh curiosities, the names of which in some cases were unknown. The presence of the Curatorwonderfullyenhanced the interest of the occasion, as catfish were de scribed, or the habits of the walking-fish com mented on. Two or three scorpion-fish were eagerly examined before being consigned to the spirits of wine, where also specimens of radiata, echinus, and phasenella were stowed away. The worthy Curator expresses regret that there is not a first-class work on fishes in the Institute, but has furnished the following informatioa relative to his day's doings :— ' Fish caught on Saturday, February 17, off the Semaphore Jetty— Mallus, an Australian . species of red. mullet; chcetodon, a broad fish, beautifully banded with dark brown on silver ground, known amongst fishermen as John Dory, but nothing like the fish of the same name in the northern hemisphere; antennarius, or walking-fish, a most singular creature, having its pectoral and ventral fins ehaped somewhat like the flippers of a seal ; balistes, or trigger-fish— vnlgo, 'leather- jacket? diodon hystrix (hedgehog fish) ; tetrodon, , ostracion, silurus, sygnathus— two species, one with young. Of this fish Maunder says:— * In spring the ova of this genus are found lying in a longitudinal division of the lower part of the abdomen, and from these the young are hatched completely formed.' Hippocampus breviceps ; beryx, a pretty fish, similar in appearance to young snapper ; patcecus ; cristiceps axillaris ; scorpcenastokerie— vnlgo, * cobbler;' with several others, which, for want of a good work, are un described.' Of moUusca there were secured specimens of phasianella, cyprae trochus, sepia, and others radiata, in asterias, echinus, and cidaris. The weed on the bottom was not at all so troublesome as was expected, and the whole day's operations progrewed with increased interest as every haul brought to surface some

thing new of the denizens of the deep. The necessary repairs will be effected as soon as pos sible, and another day set aside to still further examine the products of the Gulf, the next site for operations being a section of deeper water outside the Bell Buoy, which Mr. Water house appears to think will well reward the trouble. It is alBo to be hoped that while the knowledge of the finny species is extended, some bank of flounders, sole, or flatheads will reward those whose object is the discovery of a better supply of marketable fish. Burning ok the Joshua Bates.— If any incendiary attempted to destroy the Joshua Bates, he chose a good time to commence the work, and showed by his modus operandi that knowledge of position and circumstances which would inevitably have led to her total destruc tion but for the superhuman exertions of tha master and officers, backed by the crew, which arrested the progress of the flames; not, how ever, before immense damage was done in the topgallant forecastle. All her stores of pitch, tar, oil, paints, and oakum were stowed under the forecastle deck, and were conse quently destroyed. Then the maindeckplanldng is in some cases almost burned through, the heel of the bowsprit is charred to a considerable depth, and the catheads are similarly consumed. The windlass bitts are deeply burned, and the upper deck planking and beams are terribly injured. The interior of the forecastle is, in fact, a perfect wreek, and from the exhibition made of the effects of the fire it is a marvel how it was put out. It was on March 5, at 3.30 a.m., that the master was aroused by the mate, who informed him thai the vessel was on, fire. As soon as possible he jumped out of the cabin, and found the whole of the fore castle a burning mass. It was. fortunately quite calm, so the flames ascended without taking hold of the foremast, which is in some places scorched considerably. As soon as pos sible he rigged the force-pump, and separated the crew into three gangs, one of which was drafted off to lower a boat in case of extreme emergency; another kept the force-pump con tinually playing on the fire; while the third managed to get on the forecastle deck, and cut holes, through which immense volumes of water were poured on the seething mass. The oil and tar drifted out on the maindeck in burning streams, but were beaten out, and at about 5 it was evident the battle between fire and water was rather in favour of the latter. At 6 another phase showed itself, as the flames were entirely sub dued, and an overhaul revealed the state of destruction. With a strong breeze blowing, such was the hold the flames had of the ship that nothing but a miracle could have saved her. It is fortunate she was insured, therefore as soon as a survey was ordered the vessel was started on to Port Adelaide for restoration, and she arrived in the roadstead at 1 o'clock on Friday morning, March 8. The weather was so threatening that she was not boarded before daybreak, when the above facts were elicited. The Joshua Bates has been well known for a long time in the trade between Melbourne and China, and after serving there for many years in possession of Kong, Merg, and Co., she has been recently purchased by Messrs. Bean Brothers, who gave her a thorough overhaul and repair prior to her loading for London at Yankalilla. Edwin Walter Holloway, a seaman belonging to the vessel, has been com mitted for trial on a charge of causing the fire.

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