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MOUNT ALEXANDER

(FROM OUR SPECIAL COMMISSIONER.

No IX.

Nearly the whole of the ranges about Bendigo   have been proved to be highly auriferous, and numerous surface diggings have been discovered         within a mile or two of the creek. None of these will be available until the rains have fairly set in, and started the creek running. Never have I been more startled with instances of success than I have been at Bendigo. It is by no means   rare there, to see a man setting off to work in his hole, the only tool or implement he carries   with him being a large and pointed knife, known in diggers parlance as a "fossicking knife." The mode of proceeding is by no means uninteresting. Arrived at the hole. which, by the way, may have taken him and his

mates a week or more to sink, he descends, and lighting a candle and his pipe, he lays himself out at full length on the rock which forms the bottom of his hole, and whilst he blows out the     fragrant wreaths from his dudeen, he quietly amuses himself, at the same time, by digging out with the point of his knife, such nuggets of     the precious metal as may offer themselves to his   view. Of course, in this operation, the small     specks of gold are not collected, as this would     be too troublesome a process; but the   earth containing them is gathered up in a pocket handkerchief, and I have more than once seen two ounces washed out from a handkerchief full of stuff, whence the large pieces had been previously picked. By this "fossicking," as it is termed,   men have been known to obtain three and four pounds weight of gold in a day; though   such cases are not, as a matter of course, nume- rous. This species of dry digging is now much resorted to, not only on the Bendigo, but on the Forest and other Creeks, the scarcity   of water preventing the possibility of washing     all the earth that would, were this element plentiful, amply repay the labour. Thus it     happens that very much of the earth, now lying at the boUi-ra or e.röulid tho mouth i f many ol' thojloleí, having beru cn t asido as ns-.-loas dilling Hie di ought, contain.-, a per cjntsgc of gold s.ilHjient to make tbc washing of it in tho witt st ason highly i enumerativo. In fact, to prove ehiï; aft r the recent :h wura up he o, for tiley nera no rnorc-t ian sliovvcr.«, ¡:i..ny~pcnp!o wore oat,prospecting amongst tho refuao stuff thrown out of the h. le», Jillet f'havo met with pt rams vho have thus collected two and three ounces in a lew boura. 1 myself, not'be- ing too p:oud to di-motmt and boctmio their possessor, pi-'ked , up three pretty little nuggets that very li it.dsomeJy olF-wcd themselves to icy a-'leiiliin. as I rxlu alc-ng pa-t a number oftle&irJud holes ' It li-is often struck ino i hat in m-ny instances whera a heavy find of gold h..s Leen made, voiy ue.irly as mu'ch of tho produit» metal is shove-lhd eut with tho cn th as is gathered by tho digge'»; for wi h two F.nl three' ottneo nug. gets gliitwrmg in tl.cir »ight, they havo no oyes for th-» line gwins, which in a rich bolo, so Illicitly .«lud the earth tint surrounds the Iar,;or nugget». Besides which, lot tho digger featch as carefully a* how ii1, unless tho wli-ibt ol' his Hood earth be wns'ied, ho wi 1 almost in vjriably throw out ss much gold as ho

collect».

About north-west fiom Bl iel; s »toro, at Croi- don Pi int, and it n dist» nee of about a milo, i» the specimen hill cf B-ndigo, mid a trip there would tint be regretted by ilw tou ist, oven th.Zu.h he should b» unsiiccesl'ul in quir'z smashing, and ibnin no »pee m ns tiring anxious to fee all I could, I detormhi c1 to visit the spot, and having v.igui and indi»

in'-t notion» ihit half hund'oi weigh:» of gold wiic lying »hut up in musses« f whiti quartz, in the sumo vv»v aa the Genii were a«!cu-t'ir..etl 11 be shut up in ycl'o.v cipper va«c», Ac. in the time» îeferred to in the Arabian Nights, 1 armed myself with a hugo mason's »1 dg i bail mer, and pr. cccdcd to tho grouni. Al- though not over successful in my gold search, 1 managed, Iioacv.t. to secure a f;vv small specimens. 1 was yet highly deligh'ed with Iho scowy ol tho i-pot; and I rather suspect now that milch of my ill success wa» owing to my attention bciug moro talton up by the beauté:-! of unti.r.', than by tho glitter of gold; and iii it whilst my eye.» wandered over the hoavy rungos around, my blows fell but lightly on th" q 'arlz below mc-besides which the iiloilgo gm m rt confoundedly heavy after the fit»" few Mor». 1 novirthelts« vvitnes'od that gio! link in nnothcr which D -mo lforluna foo md inclined to deny lo mo, fir 1 saw ono niau p ii kot .about four ounces of puru gold iii specimens, all ob- tained from ono bon'dcr of quartz, of ob mt ciglilcoti inchesin dummer. Tho raigcshero.n» you may readily im -ginc, arcoxccoiingly 1-r ken and pi oeipitou», b.-ing tumbled ii'iout in »itch gloi ii in cuut'iiMe... as to make any .-itteinpt al d'Fcriplion impossible.. JJ'tng cover, d on y willi rtiogh wry gras and low picUly alii ubs, tb«y yet picsent, with theso alone, n most verdant npprnrauc«;. 'I'lio »oil ia ra ii-tly a de-coinpo-ed iion stone, exceedingly stony, a full lliirl boing broken quír z pubblea, whilst hugo boulders and solid masses of the sams r. ck may be leon, .tha first prifmcly »?"atteied nbcut, and tho latter cropping out in long un-

broken st. at i f.iim the car h On the crown of

the ranges, tho ro.lc i» but s pa ely co ercd v-ith toil, lying in spots completely naked, and »hew- ing the most cu: iou.i fo: m itio-,». Hore, inny bj seen n m is-, of ironstone rock, with vi ins of quaitz luniiing thiough it, and forming oc.m Moimlly Iho most beautiful msiic<; thir.i maybe fo.md a m.is» of qu.v'z vviüi a vein of ironstone through it, bural and wi'stcd by the notion, no ilouut, of o'.eotrio h s it, into »1

mo-t perl'i ct iron ; in im>!h--r placo may be dUcvuiCil tho faca of thy free.-toni ro k, (Lough still mingled willi qua Iz tim uni- versal pi.rvad-r in the» j It ca iiies. the wins ol' whi.h run thr ugh it in iiie.gii'nr thickiics c». Hy Ih way, I give the name of ir.iesione lo ti o rocks, tlioy beng gotitra ly known es such by tho digger», but having no pretension* to geo- lógica. I;n wli'dje", I am not prepa od t-> bo como rchputiriblo for the prop r »pplica ion of tho ter.r. l'< s-ibly they inny bo tho "Irap" ricka of go ilo-pat-. On ono ol' tho range» <i very niagn fioeut bight is ofl'crod by two hugo m ssts ef quartz, which stand in clo.io pnximity io each oihur on tha veiy crown ol'tho ridgo, elovJted somo thiily orforiy feet ahovo tbo Bunouniieg oljecl». Those, na they i oar their heads, I bro woin and m »s gi0.111, look liio two va-t tombstones ; ned a very »mall stretch of f-ncy will lend ti« to bo liovo them to havu lieon tai ej to iho ractiory of «onie p-ir of Titan*,'v-ho, in the buniol fl'ijlit from Jovu's thunderbolt», lind hnpp md io light n¡ on th j 1er,a in:ojr,ita .luthullis. ft t-eem», hoacv r, tint now iii y havo but a 6in:ill ch.iie'o "f ret.iinini: their ilov.itioa iiiunh lon'icr. Alro..dy iiavo llio pici, und tin maul in do inroad) on tboir fair prop riinn»; your digger ha-no poctiy in hit euinposHoii, and the on'y haimony te hii tu-te i* llio p'oii.ing chink Hint h g-voti « ut by tl.o gold bag ¡ thus iheso giiut t.recks hiivo boen invaded, mid aro lowf.n.ing pici'emi!,d I o-ieiitii tim »trok« of tho liB'smer .mil th » ehé-ol. Tho »ny in which iii j bund» met specimen» aro found,. is by qmr.vinç! in iho s i iii »fata of qiiailz, -until a Mil «I Ivkb. from oijlito.u iu'h.H to t*o f st «n in-li face is disbdgoil. The advonturor then sits himself donn, mil commcnci» breaking up thii mass into pii ci a of in inch or hilf an inch »qua re; ni li«ht tusk lossuio you, with crys tal quartz nearly as bad as the iron that is used upoa it. lu 6miiiliing such a pi.'ce a« th'», it rji-ely happen'that no specimen i< found, though niuel'i l.ibuur iind somo patience is absolutely ti« cossary fo. tho m oik

Tlicio' ii« « »'J unotlior' BpoJimen hilrnb'.nt tinco mile» from th- ono 1 hav< d »dib 'd, hu twten tho II mut),o and Bullock Órenle«, but as it would havo uquirod »onie knowledge ol'lo- calities to liivo lound it,a* I could pr.nurc no guido, and a«, morcovor, mf overgrown hnm mcr wi uld havo boon lather a weighty cim pu.ion for to long ii ramble, I did not attempt

U3 discovery.

By the way, there is a speciman gulley at   the Forest Creek, from which some of the most   beautiful samples of gold in quartz that I have seen have been procured. One of them in par   tioulnr was most unitjw, the gild, lunning iii veins through tho qunttz, finned the pel tool »oinbltmue ol'alloc-tiifik, bwnoho«, leave-», and nil, ci-ni pie lo It lui* boen named tho ftn vu I Unit, n .t bv nnv mi uti» an inappioj ríate n np Umhin. 'J ho lo «lily in which tho mi rfcr'ns qit"-<ï i« hei e found, is a (hop, pre

cipitim« pullev towm-ds Iho Head of Foi cat Creolt, tiiiiniiif! into ihnt Crock at ii spot near \vhor tho I'liie-upino lim-oatl iro-io i'. Uhick mn»ai»of Biortn.stnined lock» ove;hang ton o.ih-r »ive, now »tauding up a st lid impene- trable wall, »gain »outtoiod aHout or hoapetl togolle.'iu tluincBtgittBtquo coiifuBiou. 'Ihe

proceedings here nre different foin tbo'ea' Bendigo, lorihe ruhest m»>s, s of q mr i ne these which aru dug ou», foin no'es funk in tlv b.d of ih s gulley, win nee they "re obtained nut hy qua vying, but in isolated boulders Many i.f these may bo b-, kuti up I'efnro a co lilary tp cimen is obtained ; whereas, at Ben- digo, handy a m iss of tho san o si'.o is to be fin nd that docs not contain at least o.io sample of tho pr.'ci'ius mi'tsl.

As to til« se j urnerB on Bendigo, I pi ve thvm the pjlm over the diggrw on iho other c-eeks5 ae Ney whs tullecí le plus brave des braves, so I ctll tho Bendigo diggerd .' iho most eiitcrprifing of the entcrpr'sing.'' The (ir-t nh i b'ok« ground on Bcndigu «ero men who If ft tho Foi est Cock in its pilmu-st time?, and wh> to tururú fortune qu't'ed a tor Ininly to biavoall tho uncertainty in well as tho inconvenience, and po.'sibly'tho lois, nf opening np a now field. Well was their on icrpil-ing spirit rewarded, indwell did it de scivesucii a reward. Again, Iho-e that fol-

lowed -thurn had ti lca\o localities whence hundreds of pounds wo'tit of gold were being extiactul by men around them, to try tho'r luck up,n n s,ot of which all tint was !>ntmn was mere rumour. Is ¡t |o bo wondered at, then, that he dggjis on Bendijo s'i u'd le the h.rdicil, the ni sr 8|i ited, Um in *t penn ijur.n,;, and vi hal tho m .st difficult to contrul, of n'l fin c ast of "lucky vagibonds''ii Victciia? lhere ¡s a kind of bold ofl'h-nd manaor a id an inde- pendian BWiiggor «bout thom, that at-once and st first sijjht gives you this notion. ' Mister -,'. I uno d ly hoard ono of these dig,er.i pay to his companion, laying a v.« y strong o ii phasiB on tha ¿Biter, "Mi.-ter indeed! Who the d~f3 ho? Wo all pays our licornes, and are ali men alike I e:o !" Tnis will give you a notion of the kind of spirit of equality that pervades those men. May it not abo tu.g st s)ine doubts ni tu whether t,ie iirt.-jj nuioio de-pjti m df Del vu,ng street Will oi.ntitiuii mudilo'igr? Ji w11 show you alsj that the tillicial.soicw has not been cWpp'il on belo that tlicBO Ligginf s bavé not buen ôv,'irun by . fine-huniing tommisdoiit-rt and Roid-liuriling C ni« a lo»-and that no £5 fonyi ¡ avo I een iniulc. 6.1 the contrary, the co i'so Hut 1 ha.-u in a piovious ltfer pointed out as tho bost to bo pursued, lus boult hero followed. Tho men have been warned of the eni-siquancca of wo k iug without a liconac, in toni <f boing fined fir»t and warno.l af e ward , and lim result ha-, beni, that a very largo majority of ino Dig- gers djw i ohio forward régulai ly and volunta- ry to take out I heir licenses, and thereby but li tlo tiouulo is given to thu C)Diiiiiv>:o,iurn. 1 will not Biy Hint liiere are not bj no tC'ieint'ts »hornada payment as lo ig as ihey can ; but ava'n, the in.i.-t cf iii .ve who do not pay, a o poor devils wl'o have been unlm ky, and are unable to tparo tho amount ícquired fer the ft e. As lo the rciuai'idei', they a,e in cinrigib.'es, who, if H ted twenty ti.lies would still endeavt tit to avoid the impo t, fur them let tho law have no incicy. 1 h.ive p.ovionaly

had occasion to denounc certain acts of cer- tain Com.iriisii.ni-rs wlfeh I did not think iidtiedtotlieirfan-fa.ua or lo thi intensl of tho Government thoy represented. Jlav ng hilheito u-cd ctn-uic, lot me now give praho wht'i-o jir.iiso is duo. S.nc-o » inrict-d is the pkasu-o 1 have i r t s'ilying lo tho.generul gi'od fueling e-tpre-bod I y the lim digo Übg'r« towards tlioir icaident 0i)m,iiis->ioiier3-.Mest a L'o.'hbiir.i and Oilbei t '1 hey are spoken ol' on all hands in thu hijlicst terms, und ns it may po sii.ly h.ppiu that I may have nw.rd or t«o t it-ay to mu or other of tlit-to gentlemen in a ddl'eicnt t mo ti that I nt.w use, Ituistth.t having lune t»tiuiony to their merit in one piiti'HtUr, I may not b« uuiiMtliro.l a mo e grumbler and f.i tilt-finder, even by the fastidious jjLrna'ht ol'the Herald.

Apropos of iho Herald, I find that my brief allus tins lo ,h'i Hcrjld'-i office ot EWc-t Creek, has ¡:iv 'n nll'ont o. 1 am exceedingly u in y for tin-, rtiici must, beg to i.ife.-my »pol igi"S to tho wouidod f e'ings oleo re pjt-tibio a jou.i.ul. lint it uov.r »truck the iinmacuUtooJitvr, that if I li .d been elisi'imed to be patirieal

I could have penned a much more i musing, but willi ti, sarcastic description of his office, thin I li ive don.'. For'instane", I could havo described tho bt'toiogcneous nature of tho ware» amidst nhich ilia re-pect bio Journal iVuB expos.d lo. pubic, nile. I cou d hive shown how loading ui lit- es, lomo-.ade, mi l other weak, wabby tiv.sh, -''ow toadying puff-, Graham's pills, and other niiuäf ous qua -i,cii s-how pnragrnph«, s mr ap pl.-s, duminv niverti-cmoiits mid other rubbish, were nil j-.iiiblul up togethe-r on tkc'board, an I s rved out to iho few that could bo imposed upon lo perchase-with this dhTeronce, however, that th i sale of I he washy lemonade beat that ol' the washy leaders by long oddsj and that oven tha quack medicines and sour apples weit off tua to on') lefore the pulla ant paragraphs. All ibis I m ght havo said, with borne little additions, h d need beni, but, 1 did net do so, and su'ely come little t-onsid ration should bave been given to my ferbcarance.

But I haye gone o.T into a very tlull and hrav.v subjo.-t, for which yi ur re.Tier* wit I not at ali thank mc; and in i>o dob g, by thal mys feiious syippithy that is inexplicable, my biain lias imbihed a considerable pnrt'on of tim lead that bo btrongly pervades the columns of the Journal with whfch 1 have had the tcmoiity to come into mentid contact. As 1 tims feel my- self utterly incompetent at pre.-entt,) wiil«a-iy. thing tit for tho /tigus, 1 must al once din« my communication toa clo-ai, leaving it to " 'li in', tho vc-tni cr," to give ms back my usual tone

of mimi.

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