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1 correction by doug.butler - Show corrections


Some months ago a series of grave charges were made at a meeting of shareholders iu London against the Directors and officers of the Great Northern Mining Company. and a

Committee was appointed to enquire into and report upon the same. This Committee laid its report before the annual meeting which was held on the 29th of January last, but it was not then considered because the Directors had not had an opportunity of becoming acquainted with its contents. We find, however, in the Mining Journal of February the 14th, a leading article written to allay unquiet feelings by   explaining that the report contained nothing damaging to the Directors or disagreeable to the shareholders. At the same time- it is in timated that the document is considered not altogether free from animus on the part, of the Committee, and to this is traced the fact that no copy of it was sent to the Directors before it was laid before the meeting. The report, it is stated, is divided into five heads, and relate to the five separate questions which the Committee conceive they were in structed to enquire into. These are— the qua   lification of the Directors; the accuracy or otherwise of the accounts; position and prospects of the enterprise ; stake held by the Directors ; and general expenditure of the Company. The writer in the Mining

journal then analyzes the report, and says on these various points the Committee report that all the Directors 'are duly qualified ;' that ' the general integrity of the accounts cannot be impeached,' though surprise is expressed that £550 paid to the solicitors was not in cluded in preliminary expenses; that 'the reports from the colony were throughout en couraging' until No. 24, in which Captain Pascoe deprecated the policy of working so many mines at once ; that the Directors had, since the formation of the Company, reduced their stakes from 1,500 shares each to 300 or   400 shares each; and that as to the fifth point, the general expenditure had been heavy, though the mineral properties possessed by the Com  

-any are of great value, and must' ultimately be remunerative.' ~ The conclusion which the Mining Journal draws from the report is that it is highly con   firmative of the careful manner in which the   affairs have been conducted and the accounts kept, while the prospects of the mine are ad- mitted to be most encouraging.' - No explana- tion is given of the Directors haying eo largely disposed of their shares, beyond that they pro- bably took more than they intended to keep for the purpose of establishing tlie Company,   and on the question of expenditure, it is said that instructions had been sent to the colony       before the report was brought up, to the effect that operations should be confined as much as possible at present, to the Nuccaleena Mine.'   On the whole,- it is said 'the report of the Committee of Investigation must be regarded           as highly encouraging, instead of discouraging.' It admits that the -Directors hold a con- siderable stake in tbe Company ; that the     keeping of the accounts is beyond impeach ment in any sense ; that tho position and     prospects of the mine' are good; and that

altogether the mineral properties possessed by the Company are of great value, and must be ultimately remunerative.' It is asked, ' What better resume can be desired ?: And this, moreover, the returns of a Committee of Investigation appointed to examine into the respective particulars, and no doubt to pick holes therein.   In another issue of the Mining Journal there is an account of the proceedings of the annual meeting, at which tbe Committee's report was presented. At that meeting the Directors also made their annual statement as to the position and prospects of the Company. It was shown that from November, 1861, to. November, 1862 the total expenditure had been £32,221 11s. 7d., whilst the amount received on the sales of ore during the time had bee-a £4,625 7s. 9d. ; but a further quan tity of ore, amounting to, 190 tons, had since been shipped, and would probably realze £4,000. This sum, together with the balance in hand and tho unpaid calls, was expected to be amply sufficient to meet all the liabilities of the Company for several months to come, as no fresh ma- chinery was required. The Directors further

showed that they had anticipated some of the statements of the Committee of Investigation by making alterations in the colonial manage- ment, and by directing that operations should bo chiefly limited to the Nuccaleena Mine. Of this mine it is said— 'If the richness and abundance of tho copper ore laid open at the shallow depth of fourteen fathoms are found to continue as the explorations are carried deeper, there can be no doubt whatever of the permanent success of tho undertaking.' We trust that the hopes here entertained will be fully realized, and that the Great Northern Mining Company will ere long be highly prosperous. The report states that tho Honourable S. Davenport and the Honourable A. Scott are the present local Directors, and that Mr. Pearson Morrison has taken the place of Captain Pascoe. Tho question, of aban doning some of the leases likely to prove unremunerative is spoken of as a matter for the future consideration of the shareholders, and it is also proposed that the claims of Mr. Finke and the executors of the late Mr. Chambers, who have applied for 14,250 paid up shares, as the remaining consideration for tbe properties conveyed to the Company, should be met by the surrender of all sections with the exeception of Nuccaleena, Mooree No. 7, and Oratunga No. 2.