GATHERING OF THE OLD COLONISTS OF
A social gathering of the old colonists of Victoria took place at the Criterion Hotel, in this City, last evening. More than two hundred gentlemen who had been in these colonies for a period of ten years, sitting down to a most sumptuous dinner provided for the celebration of the occasion. The dinner was laid in the large room of this really magnificent hotel, and the entire management re -flected the utmost credit upon the proprietor, Mr. Moss. The viands were of the most choice description, and the wines were of the very best quality. It will be seen from the subjoined bill of fare, that every delicacy that the most fastidious epicure could desire was provided, and the whole was served up with a care that was very pleasing to all who had the gratification of being admitted to this "august assembly." The bill of fare ran thus :
BILL OF FARE
Soup. - Ox tall, a l'Anglaise ; vermicelli, a la Itaian. Sherry.
Fish. - A la maître de Hotel ; a la Brochet j a la Regency ; a la Criterion ; a la Toulouse. Sherry.
Entrees*.-Saddle of mutton; loins of beef; brain fritters au gratín ; boiled fowl, a la Victoria ; croquet a la Polonais; calf's ears, turtle style; croquet o' lamb, a la Maréchelle; Turban of Conde; veal cotelette Talliho style. Hock and Sherry.
Vegetable« - Potatoes, fried; ditto, a la maitre d'Hotel ; ditto, Lionaise; cauliflower; ditto, au gratin ; trifolis, a la Espagnole
Roast.- Lamb, stag fashion ; turkey, various styles ; goose a la Richelieu; ditto, a la Robespierre; duck, a la Prince of Wales ; fowl, a la Crlterion; salad. Champagne.
Dessert - Cream de vanille; ditto, almond; calfs-foot jelly; blanc-mange; a confectlonery. Sparkling hock and Moselle.
Fruits .-Apples ; oranges ; almonds ; raisins, Ac.
Mulled claret; punch infernal. Coffee; clgars.
The Mayor of Melbourne acted as Chairman, being supported on his right by his Excellency the Lieutenant Governor, Dr. Graves, M L C, tho Colonial Secretary, Alderman Hodgson, M.L.C., Mr. Goodman, M.L.C. ; and on the left by Mr. Griffith, M.L C, Dr. Thomson, M.L.C, and Mr. H. Miller, V.L.C,, the vlce-chalr was filled by Mr. William Kerr, the Town clerk, and the repast was enlivened by the strains of a very excellent band that had, with very good taste, been provided for the occasion. The dessert having been placed on the table.
The CHAIRMAN calling upon those assem- bled to charge their glasses, proposed 'the Queen." The toast was received with hurrahs and cheers, the band playing "The National Anthem."
" His Royal Highness Prince Albert" was next given, and drunk with considerable warmth of feeling
The CHAIRMAN, In announcing the next toast, said he rose with great pleasure to propose the health of a most distinguished guest, the Lieutenant.Governor (Cheers.) He felt that he should ill discharge the duties of president of that meeting, Ii he allowed such a toast to pass without making some comment upon the gentleman who had for so long a period held the re sponslble office of Lieutenant Governor, (hear, hear ) He was sure that one and all must feel gratified that His Excellency, who was an old colonist, had on this occasion honored them with his presence. (Cheers.) He was sure that as an old colonist, if they had met His Excellency more frequently, they would have felt that delightful pleasure which they now ex- perlenced, (hear, hear,) as well as that respect which they owed to him as a representative of Her Most Gracious Majesty. (Cheers ) He rejoiced to see His Excellency present on that occasion, and he felt assured that if those present acted with His Excel- lency, they would have a better understanding than they might have in the past Government of the colony. From the cordial manner with which they had re- ceived the toast, it was quite unnecessary for him to say any more on the subject, but what he had said he felt was due to His Excellency for the ready assent he had given to be present at their fes- tival, and their warmest thanks ware due to him for the honor he had done them. (Cheers, the band playing "He's a hearty good fellow.")
His EXCELLENCY, on rising, was very warmly received. He said that as an
Colonist of fourteen years' standing, they would give him credit for what he said and what he felt on the present occasion. He was grateful for the honor that had been conferred on him, and for the pleasure they had afforded him in inviting him to the present gathering, He felt assured that when he retired from this colony he should carry away with him the good feelings and good wishes of them all; and if at any time his services were looked upon as having been use- ful, he should feel gratified, and at all times should be proud in being looked upon and remembered as "an old colonist." (Cheers. )
"The Army and Navy" were next given and re- sponded to.
Mr. HULL made some observations with reference to the modesty of gentlemen connected with these pro- fessions in speaking of what they had done and what they could do, and concluded by saying that the medals they wore on their breasts kept them from talking, but they were nevertheless always ready to act. (Cheers. )
The VICE-PRESIDENT said he had a toast to submit to the consideration of those assembled, and he was sure they would receive it with applause. It was, "The Members of the Legislative Council," to whose care the old colonists had entrusted the important duties which devolved on them in the present Session. (Cheers. ) The task that devolved on every member of that hon. House, was not a slight one, the duty devolving upon them of giving to the Australian Colonies such a con- stitution as would no doubt meet with the general sup- port of those for whom those gentlemen had been called upon to legislate. (Cheers.) He hoped they would be enabled to exercise their judgment unfettered - not only unfettered by the Government in those colonies, but unfettered by the Government in England, (Cheers.) He hoped the members of the Council would be left to form such a Constitution as was adaptable to the wants of the country. He felt the pre- sent occasion was one for speaking on such a question, and that they were capable of marking their sense of
the conduct of the members of the Council elected by old colonists who did not wish to be ennobled, but to remain in as old hands still. (Cheers.) He felt assured they would all join most heartily in the toast he pro- posed to them, and drink with a hearty feeling the healths of the members of the Legislative Council. (Cheers.)
Mr. GOODMAN, M.L.C., had the honor to return thanks for the members of the Legislative Council, and it might be a matter of pride for those present to know, that with three exceptions the members of that body all belonged to their own particular body " the old colonists." (Cheers.) They all knew that this colony had risen in the eyes of all nations, and it was well known that the old colon- ists had been found equal to the pressing and important duties that had devolved on them. (Cheers.) There were many present who well remem- bered the old and happy days they had spent in the house they were then assembled in-the many convivial meetings they had enjoyed-and they likewise knew that whether they met in this country or in a foreign land, that all were ever ready to acknowledge good fellowship, and to strengthen the energies of each other. (Cheers.) The members of the Legisla- tive Council were prepared to meet the present emer- gency, and he felt that the old colonists, by their confidence and ability would be enabled to carry it through, come what might. (Cheers.) He need say little more; they all know each other, they all depended
on each other: and, he added, let us never forget each other. (Loud cheers.)
Mr. PURVES then proposed the "Bench and the
Mr. GRIFFITH, M.L.C., rose to respond, and regret- ted that Mr. Judge Barry had been prevented from being present that evening through indisposition. In
the absence of that gentleman the duty devolved upon him (Mr. G.), and he felt pleasure proposing the toast, feeling, as he did, the
hlghest respect for the Bench and the Bar of Victoria. He sincerely believed that in no country was justice more impartially administered than in this colony. (Cheers.) He was convinced that this country had been saved from the horrors of lynch law from the confidence the public had felt in the impartial conduct of those upon whom had devolved the administration of justice. Mr. Griffith concluded by thanking the assembly for the reception they had given to the toast,
" The Bench and the Bar."
Mr. HULL proposed the next toast, which was the Clergy of the Colony." Owing to the great confusion and want of order prevailing in the room, we were totally unable to catch any of the remarks made by the proposer, which we believe was also the case with the majority of the gentlemen present.
The toast was drunk amidst great disorder.
The CHAIRMAN said that if the gentlemen present were prepared to allow the toasts on the list prepared by the Stewards to be gone through, he would an- nounce the next toast, which was in fact the toast of the evening, viz., "The Pioneers of Victoria - the Colonists of ten years' standing." The toast, he said, was in fact identical with that of "Our noble selves," as none but colonists of ten years standing were eligible to attend upon the present occasion. He thought the reflection of every gentleman present would be most gratifying when he looked back from the past, and then viewed the present state of the colony. As an old colonist himself he did rejolce at occupying the position he held as Chairman of the present social meeting. He thought upon looking at what the colony had been ten years ago, the words of Scripture might be appropriately taken up, "that the wilderness and the solitary place had been made to rejoice, as the rose. (Hear, hear.) The progress of the colony in the last few years had been unexampled, not only in the annals of colonisation, but in the annals of the world. Prophetic vision could not foretell what might occur in the next ten years; but if the colony progressed for the next ten years as it had done for the last ten, Vic- toria would undoubtedly become a great and mighty nation. The colonists of Victoria had a most important part to play in future events, and it would rest with them to say whether a great nation under British rule, and British law and government, should exist, or whether in time to come the colony should fall back. (Cries of " Out of order," and " No politics.") The meeting here assumed a very excited appearance ; several persons (gentlemen we cannot, with a due reve- rence to our consciences, say) getting upon the tops of the tables, and gesticulating in a manner perfectly unin- telligible to the majority of the company. The re- mainder of the hon. chairman's remarks were totally inaudible, owing to the scene of confusion which ensued. The chairman and stewards having vainly endeavored by moral force to preserve order, it was necessary to call in the physical aid of the police, and a scene of riot and disorder ensued which it has seldom been our misfortune to see equalled in Melbourne. Amidst the crash of decanters, glasses, and dessert services, occasioned by the tables being made the arena of display by the more disorderly of the company and the police, His Excel- lency and suite took their departure, followed shortly after by the Mayor, who had striven without effect to reproduce order and harmony in the meeting.
After a short time, the Chairman and a few of the
more sober and well disposed of the company, assem- bled in another room, and the following toasts were
drunk, viz. -
" Victoria, the land of our adoption."
Proposed by Mr. Sutherland in a neat and brief speech,
in which he characterised Victoria as young, healthful, beautiful and rich, attracting the commerce and popu-
lation of the wide world to her shores.
" The Mayor and Corporation of the City of Mel- bourne," proposed by Mr. Purves, and responded to by
" The Press," proposed by the Chairman.
"All deserving old colonists in distress, if any such there be," proposed by Mr. Kerr.
" The Town Clerk of Melbourne," proposed by Mr. Budd, and duly responded to by Mr. Kerr.
The health of the Chairman was then drunk; to which he briefly replied ; and the meeting separated at a little after twelve ; the gentlemen present all express- ing their deep regret at the untoward events of the early part of the evening, which had at
the instance of two or three old colonists, who, in their fervor for the occasion, had been too devoted in their homage to the shrine of Bachus, so suddenly and unpleasantly terminated the harmony of the Festival of
the Old Colonists of Victoria.