COTTON AND FLAX.
The Committee of the Agricultural and Horticultural Society have wisely determined, by offering a prize, to test tbe success that has attended the attempt to ere«r cotton in South
Australia. The amount of the prize offered is indeed small, but it is reasonable to hope tint the credit to be awarded for conducting such an important experiment to a successful issue will be sufficient to induce many persons to exhibit at the Society's Show the result of their cotton cultivation. Should, however, this, the first occasion when cotton appears in the list as a product to be encouraged by a prize, fail to satisfy tbe expectation of the sanguine, we trust the experiment will not therefore be abandoned. We trust that those who have faith in the fertility of our toil, and the genial character of our elimate, will not be dis heartened or deterred from trying again
Seeds do not always thrive when first intro* duced to new soils and novel climatic condition!. They may require treatment different from that under which they were raised, as was thi case with the American cotton seed in India. And in any case it is but reasonable to expect that reproduction will repay tho cultivator with a perfectly acclimatiz.-d, and therefore a more profitable plant. We have every in ducement to persevere in our attempts to make cotton an item in our exports, inasmuch as our prosperity would be immeasurably en hanced were we to succeed in raising largely produce for which England offers an illimitable market ; and every South Australian, we are convinced, would feel proud to assist in eman cipating tbe great manufacturers of Britain from dependence on slave-grown cotton. . „ We were greatly pleased to notice by the report that at the same meeting Mr. Hackett produced a sample of colonial-grown flax, and that a prize is offered also for the beat sample of this article to be exhibited at the annual Show. Flax-growing is a matter that has been too long overlooked by our farmers, and ^ ono which will certainly, in suitable situations, repay the care and attention bestowed upon it. Tho extraordinary improvements effected in cotton manufacture, and tho beauty of tho fabrio produced, combined with that greatest of all popularizsrs— cheapness— had gone far to diminish the use of linen, and to make flax-growing unprofitable in England. Still there were purposes for which linen alone was retained, and others for which flax and cotton combined furnished the most luitablo materials, and in several countries manufac tured flax competed successfully with the cheap and beautiful productions of tbe Engliih oottou-mills. The cambrics of Flanders and Ireland, and the strong linens of Russia ajjd Germany, retain their admirers ; and although the imperial purple may become unpopular, it is not likely that fino linen will ever cease to be fashionable. The very general attention now directed to discover a fibre that may be employed as a substitute for cotton has had the effect of reminding English, economist! of a long neg lected crdp, and an almost forgotten manufac ture. Under tbe mistaken impression that flux is an unusually exhaustive crop, its growth has been discouraged and even prohibited in. some English Uaies. The dodire to make Britain as independent of foreign whoat us possible had alto by the great encouragement *^ given to tbe growth of cereals something to do with the disfavour into which flax cultivation had fallen. The result is that many English farmers never saw a crop of flax. Some aro unacquainted with the appearance of the plant, and very few indeed know how to grow, gather, and make it a marketable commodity. The system of farming on a large scalo is also uu fuvjurable to il ji cultivation, as it is essentially Die crop of the small farmer, and, with proper knowlcdgeand moderately favourable conditions,
.no utvab^iiuuMuw uu|i. luxrciHuu Mia laruiur Inda a competitor in every neighbour when ho tttempts to grow grain, and that his profits ire consequently reduced to a minimum ; in lux-growing he has less competition, and bis profits arc greater aud moro certain. Wo incline to the belief that the same rule would apply to South Australia were flu-growing numbered among the pursuits of our farmers. In Ireland tho price of corn regulates tho cultivation of fldx, making it vary as much as from 70,000 tj 80,00 J acres per annum. In 1857 thero were only 91,000 acres laid down in flax, while in 1853 tluro were fully 175,000 acre* so employed, tho difference in value being estimated at £1,000,000. Again in 1859 there vvra 136,282 acre3 laid djwn in flax, and in I860 only 121-li acres under that crop. Tiie exports of linen fabrics from the United ^ Kingdom are about £4,500,000 per annum ; ' the Lome trado is about equal to that, and tho yarns exported amount to £2,000,000, making a total of £11,000,000— about two-tbird» of which is represented by tho Irish linou trade, and the remainder by tho looms of Scotland and Yorkshire. As an encourage ment to our own farmers wo may state on the best authority that, properly managed, flax is not more exhaustive than other cropi — certainly not so much so as cereals. It was in fict only found to bo bo wher-? the farmers overlooked tho valuo of the linseed, and allowed it to rot instead of converting it into oilcake for their cattle, and thus returning it as a powerful fertilizer to the ground where it wa3 grown. Belgium is the country, liowever, to which we must look for tho moit successful examplo of flu-growing. The Belgian flux appeared to great advantago at tho Internationa] Exhibi tion, and that excellence it confessedly the re sult of careful cultivation. Deep ploughing i» common in that country, one plough lollowing the other in the same furrow, gaining a dopth of from 15 to 18 inches, the spade being occasionally substituted for the second plough} the object being to obtain ft deep, friable, and rich soil, equally pul verised and uniformly manured. The colza plant, from which tbe well-known oil is extracted, is largely cultivated ; as U also tho beetroot, for sugar ; but all the varied products of Belgian agriculture arc considered chiefly ai preparatives lor flu— tho ground being worked as carefully for that crop as wo preparo it for onions ; and its chemical qualities equally dis tributed throughout, a fibre of uniform fineness and great value is the result. The visitors to the Belgian depart ment in the Great Exhibition speak in glowing terms of tho wonderful fabric known as Brussels lace. The specimens of this handicraft there displayed are described as tissues of surpassing beauty, which seem to havo been woven ' by fitry fingers out of the lightest gossamer that floats in tho summer air.' Apart from tho trade of Belgium in linens and cognate manufactures, we may men tion as more to our purpose that the Belgian (lax imported into Great Britain in. 1860 amounted in value to £434,079. We have to repeat that flax is essentially the small farmers' crop. It con be sown bj himself, cleaned, pulled, Bleeped, and scutched by himself and children. It ii worthy of con tideration also in the event of steeping— which is a necessary preliminary to scutching— being inconvenient in some localities, whether the dried plants might not Depressed and exported with a profit. ^
Presentation to Mil McKinlay.— On Tucs . day morning a deputation, consisting of Messrs. George Hamilton, H. S. Price, J. F. Hayward, and J. T. TurnbuU, waited upon Mr. McKinlay and presented him with a magnificent silver tea and coffee service. The pattern is Grecian, and on one of the pieces is the following inscription:— 'Pre- sented to John McKinlay by his South Australian friends, in appreciation of his successful explora tion to the northern coast. Adelaide, 18G2.' This is a gratifying and well-deserved compliment to a man who is held in universal esteem. We understand that the plate will Ik: on view for a few days at Mr. Davis's shop in Rundle-street. The Moonta Mine.— At a meeting of share holders of the .Moonta Mine, held at the offices of the Company, in Currie-street, on Tuesday, the 10th instant, a dividend of £10 per share was de clared, payable on the '23th of the present month. Thh Late SuicrDE.— The funeral of the late Mr. K. Carter took place on Tuesday afternoon. His remains were followed to the West-terrace Ceme tery by several members of the Albion Lodge of ( Iddfellows, M.U., of which he was an old member. The funeral service at the grave peculiar to the Manchester Unity of Oddfellows was read by the D.O-.M. of that Lodfie after the funeral service, which was performed by the Rev. Mr. PollitL Wilful LUmage at the Butts.— Another in stance of wilful damage has been discovered at the firitiK range on the South Park Lands. Some time last week a considerable portion of the paling fence which eucloses the range was broken down. No suspicion attaches to any one; but it U e\- dently » wilful act,
Sotbeuk CorjBT.-The criminal sittings were continued before Mr. Justice Gwynne on Tues .day, February 10. Ann Donaldson was convicted of stealing sundry articles from her master, John Collins, at Walkerville, on the 23rd January. She - wm sentenced to one year's imprisonment with hard labour. A person described in the calendar fla Alexander C. Morrison was aquitted on two charges of obtaining money by means of false rpreteuces. Sarah Mitchelmore was arraigned on two indictments, cliarging her with stealing books, the prosecutor in one instance l-eing Mr. E. S. 'Wigg, and in the other Mr. W. C. Eigby. In. the former case His Honor directed an acquittal, as he was of opinion the charge could not be sustained ; in the latter a verdict of guilty was returned with a recommendation to mercy. There arc still four charges against the prisoner. The Crown Solicitor intimated that he would consider whether or not he would proceed with them. The Case of Macnee v. Parrinton. —The reserved point in the interpleader case Macnee v. Parrington, heard at the last sittings of the Adelaide Local Court, touching the validity of the transfer of the subject-matter in dispute to the claimant, was argued by the counsel, according to arrangement, before the Special Magistrate, Mr. J.f W. Macdonald, on Tuesday morning. His Worship was of opinion that there had been an actual change of possession of the property, and gave judgment for the claimant. Adelaide Police Court. —The saying 'After storm there comes a calm" received a further Verification in the Adelaide Police Court on Tues- day. On the previous day the Police Magistrate was kept presiding for nearly five hours, but on Tuesday morning there were no cases to bring before lum. and consequently he did not take his seat on the Bench. This Evening's Concert.— The Philharmonic Society will give a concert of secular music this evening, at the Adelaide Assembly Booms. The principal vocalists arc Miss King— the young lady from Melbourne, who recently made so favourable an impression upon the audience on her first ap pearance here as a vocalist— Mrs. Fox, Mrs. Smart, and Messrs. Beaumont and Wilkinson. The pro gramme includes the overtures from 'Massaniello' and 'Fra Diavolo,' the celebrated 'Miserere' scene from 'II Trovatorc,' in which Miss King will sustain the part of Leonora, and a very good selection of songs, balHds, duets, glees, and cho ruses from some of the best composers. Trinity Chubch Yousg Men's Mutual Im
provement society.— Tlic quarterly meeting of the Young Men's Mutual Improvement Society connected with Trinity Church was held in the Church Schoolroom, Morphett-street, on Tuesday evening. Besides a good attendance of, the mem bers, a large number of friends, especially ladies, were present. The Very Rev. Dean Farrell at first took the chair, but was shortly obliged to retire through indisposition, and the Kev. R. Reid afterwards presided. The programme comprised musical selections, recitations by the members, and a lecture on Dickens's well-known work, 'David Copperfield,'1 by Mr. Hodgkinson. The choir, consisting of two ladies and five gentlemen connected irith the Society, under the direction of Mr. Henry Pounsett, during the evening gave the Choruses, 'Come unto these yellow sands,' 'See our oars,' 'Winds gently whisper,' and 'Lady of beauty.' A glee, 'When shall we three meet again,' was also sung by Messrs. K. Watson, J. Watson, and C. Lyons; and a duet, 'The minute gun at sea,' by Messrs. K. Watson and T. Lyons. Each piece was very creditably given, and the choruses were tolerably well sustained. The recitations con sisted of the following selections:— 'Helvellyn,' Mr. Halse; 'African Chief,' T.Lyons; 'The Leper,' Holmes; 'Tell's Speech,' It. Watson; 'Downfall of Poland,' C. Lyons; ' iEsop and the Frenchman,' T. Lyons and J. Fiveash; 'Corona- tion,' K. W. Fiveash; 'The Combat,' AV. Warren; and 'Absalom,' Mr. Clayfield. Although, as the Chairman intimated, none of the speakers laid any claim or pretensions to excellence, their endeavours to recite liefore a public audience were not unattended by some degree of success. A little more distinctness of ?pronunciation and a less rapid style of delivery would, however, in nearly every cose have been a great improvement, hlr. R. Watson's piece was by far more deliberately and clearly given than any other. The lecture, which Mr. Hodg kinson bad previously delivered elsewhere on one or two occasions of a similar nature, was divided in the programme into two parts, between which the glee and the recitations were given. It was written in an exceedingly nappy manner, was read in an equally agreeable way, and while portraying the principal characters and incidents in the work, contained throughout evidences of much originality in its composition. Votes of thanks were warmly ac corded to. the lecturer aud the singers, and the benediction having been pronounced by the Chairman, the National Anthem by the choi closed the entertainment shortly before 11 o'clock. TnE Sooth Australian Gas Company.— The operations of this Company are being prosecuted with the utmost vigour. The tender of Mr. George Wyatt, North-terrace Foundry, has been accepted for the gasholder; and it will be seen that tenders for building the purifying-house at the Company's Works, Brompton, are invited and receivable up to noon on Monday, the 10th instant. The mains along the Port-rood and as for as King William street will soon be laid, and at the end of May the
gas illumination of the city wul, we hope, show that the operations of the Company have been a complete success. MarrABY Music— We understand that the members of the late West Adelaide Band have arranged with the First Adelaide Rifles to join that company, subject to the approval of the proper authorities. Timetable of the English Mail. — In another part of the paper we publish the time table of the India and Australia mail sen-ices for the year 1863. Special Train to ttte Port. — An advertise ment in another column announces that on Thurs day, the day of the Agricultural and Horticultural Exhibition, a special late train will leave Adelaide for the Port ut 10 o'clock p.m., calling at all the intermediate stations. The train will return im mediately after its arrival. The usual fares will be charged. A Collison.— On Tuesday evening, about S o'clock,' a collison took place opposite the Police Station in King William-street, between two vehicles. It appeared that the one -a spring-dray —came in contact with a gig, which sustained con siderable damage, having one of its sides smashed in. Two children who were in one of the vehicles were thrown out; but we uuderstand that neither of them received any serious injuries. The Kev. Mr. Austin's Lecture on Geology. —Mr. Austin calls our attention to two errors in our report of his lecture on 'Geology,' at En counter Bay. Instead of 'coral' read 'coal,' and in place of 'South Australia' read 'Port Elliot and its neighbourhood.' Victor Harbour Tramway.— The following tenders have been received at the Engineer and Architect's Office, for forming and building a bridge at AVatson's Gap, on the line of tramway from Goolwa to Victor Harbour:— E. Redman, JE3.749 10s. (accepted); A. H. Gouge, .£4,478; H. Bobinson, £1,840. ? Coloured Photographs.- Mr. HaU, the photo graphic artist, has introduced to the South Austra lian public a somewhat novel process of taking likenesses. It is a combination of portrait paint ing and photography. The photograph, on gloss, is first taken, and is then treated as a groundwork for an oil painting, the colours being laid on by an artist skilled in this kind of work. The result in many instances is shown to be a portrait possess ing the correctness of a photograph and the soft ness of an oil painting. But the process is some what expensive, and does not in all cases preserve a striking likeness. Most of the portraits taken, however, in this instance are good, and no doubt many persons to whom this mode of colouring is ' new will be glad to give it a trial. LARGE SPUR-WHEEL.-On Tuesday we had an opportunity of inspecting a large spur-wheel just completed by Messrs. Horwood & Son, iron founders, of Hindley-streetrfor the Duryea Mining Company. It weighs about 30 cwt., and is over seven feet in diameter, the crank-pin holes being bored out. We believe it is as fine a piece of workmanship as any which has yet been turned out in the colony, and it seems a pity that such articles should be imported when they can be pro duced here. We likewise saw several large pipes for mining purposes, which are also well cast. Native BiRDs.-Jlr. Thomas Williams, who purposes proceeding to England by the Indus, takes with him a splendid collection of living native birds, and amongst them the two beautiful ram are* which he exhibited about twelve months ago in Adelaide. Since that time their plumage has become much more brilliant, and he has kindly consented to allow them to be exhibited at the Black Swan Hotel, North-terrace, on Thurs day, the 12th instant, from 10 a.m. FrjLLAETON Sunday-School Anniver sary: — A correspondent informs us that 'a special treat was on Wednesday evening, the 4th instant, aflbrded to the children of the Fullarton Sunday-School by Mr. Martin, of the Fellenberg Commercial School, flindmarsh-square, in the exhibition of his excellent nnd valuable selection of dissolving views. The diagrams representing our planetary system, the diurnal motion of the earth, the tidal influences of the sun and moon, eclipses and their causes, and the appearances ol the comets as they in their orbits approach to and recede from the sun were first exhibited, and were calculated to excite in the minds of the young a love for the study of that interesting science, astronomy. Scenes in Palestine, Italy, Africa, Australia, and old England were then portrayed ?with beautiful effect, statuettes, fountains, birds, and flowers being tastefully introduced between ? the scenes. Then followed comic and humorous .pieces, such as children, large and small, take special delight in. The exhibition occupied fully two hours, and at its close votes of thanks were 'proposed and carried, amidst the hip hip hurrahs of the scholars, to Mr. Martin and to the superin tendent and teachers of the school.' - -§T Messrs. Green -fc Wadham have ' ' requested us to direct attention to their Sale ol Eight Sections of Land, situated at Lipson's Cove, 'in the County of Flinders, which will take place in . the Land Mart, this day, at 12 o'clock, as per ad' f ertisementa.