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Our Melbourne correspondent tele- graphed last night:—Although the Govern- ment will make no announcement at pre- sent regarding the successor to the retiring Chief Justice of the High Court (Sir Samuel Griffith) it is considered practically certain that the position will be offered to Sir Edmund Barton, who was the first Prime Minister of Australia, and became a justice of the High Court at the same time as Sir Samuel Griffith, was appointed Chief Jus- tice. In the event of the appointment of Sir Edmund Barton there will still be a vacancy on the High Court bench, which may be filled by the appointment of Mr. Adrian Knox, K.C., or Sir Robert Garran, the Solicitor-General, who accompanied the Prime Minister to England, and is now on his way back to Australia.

Mr. Sidney Kidman left for Sydney on Wednesday. He intends to proceed to America in about a fortnight's time in company with his wife and daughter.

Mr. H. Allerdale Grainger, who was a member of the House of Assembly for many years, and later Agent-General in London, to-day completes his 71st year. Since his return to South Australia Mr. Grainger has been living quietly at North Adelaide. He was educated at the famous Rugby School, when Dr. Temple, after- wards Archbishop of Canterbury, was headmaster. Before entering politics Mr. Grainger followed the journalistic pro- fession, first in America, where he resided for some years, and later in South Aus-

Mr. H. A, Grainger.

tralia, but still later he was connected with the Stock Exchange business, of which he had had considerable experi- ence in London. As a legislator, Mr. Grainger won a reputation as a financial expert, and there was no more keen critic of a budget in the House while he was member. He had a faculty for dealing     with financial subjects, and it was largely his skill in this direction that induced the Government of the day to select him for the important office of Agent-General, in which capacity he rendered great service to the State.

The many friends of Mr. Harding W. Bickford, managing director of Messrs. A. M. Bickford & Sons, Limited, Bris- bane, will regret to learn of his death in that city from pneumonia on Tuesday. He was the second and only son of Mr. Harry Bickford, director of the company which bears his name. Mr. Harding Bickford joined the Adelaide staff as chemist, in which position he served for some years prior to going to England to pursue his studies. He attended the South London School of Pharmacy, conducted by Dr. John Muter, F.R.S.C., F.I.C., where he   was eminently successful, obtaining the certificates of honor and merit for profi- ciency in chemistry, materia medica, phar- macy, &c. On his return to Adelaide he   took charge of the laboratories and manu-   facturing department in connection with the company s business, and when a branch was opened in Brisbane he was appointed managing director, which position he oc- cupied up to the time of his death.

Mrs. Playford, of Osmond-terrace. Nor- wood, has received news that her husband, Major E. F. Playford, has been decorated with the Order of the British Empire, in recognition of his valuable services during the war. Major. Playford left South Aus- tralia with the 43rd Battalion and was a popular officer. He contracted a serious illness in the Tenches in France, which necessitated a severe operation. He after- wards carried out administrative duties at various depots in England, and since May, 1918, has been in command of B Depot at the Westham Camp, Weymouth. His fine work in that capacity was recognised both by the military authorities and all the Australian troops who passed through this camp. Major Playford is well known in the Government service. Up to the time of his enlistment he was connected with the Lands Titles Office.

Major John Ward, of the Salvation Army, who was well known in South Aus- tralia in the early days of the movement, has returned after the absence of 20 years, to take charge of the Boys' Home at Mount Barker.

Mr. Samuel Benson, who will be remem- bered as mounted orderly to a number of State Governors, will to-morrow celebrate his eighty-first birthday. Mr. Benson has retired to the quiet of a neat little cot- tage in Cardwell-street, Adelaide, and is still enjoying good health and is full pos- session of his faculties. He is brisk in

speech and movement, and one would think him nearer 60 than 80 years of age. It seems strange that a man who to-day is as comparatively young-looking and ac- tive could have ridden his charger as orderly to Sir Dominick Daly not long after the election of South Australia's first constitutional Parliament. It was he who was selected by Governor Daly to act as orderly to the Duke of Edinburgh when his Royal Highness visited South Aus- tralia and laid the foundation-stone of the General Post-Office in 1867. Two years later, on the Duke's second visit, he was again appointed orderly to the Royal guest. He served in a similar capacity five Governors and four Deputy Governors or Administrators, and he came into per-

sonal touch with every Governor of South

Mr. S. Benson.

Australia from Sir Dommick Daly to Sir George Le Hunte. Mr. Benson was born at Freshford, Ireland, on August 8, 1838, and came to Western Australia with his parents when 12 years of age. He joined the Convict Department in that State a few years later, and he had many excit- ing experiences with escaped convicts and blacks. He made an unsuccessful attempt at gold mining in Victoria in 1860, and then joined the mounted police, and, when stationed at Mansfield, he was a member of a detachment sent in pursuit of the notorious bushranger, Morgan. In 1863 he returned to Western Australia and again joined the police service. When he was in charge of the police at Camden Harbor, in 1865, the late Mr. R. H. Sholl (uncle of Mr. L. H. Sholl, I.S.O.) was Government Resident. Mr. Benson will be remembered as keeper of the old Go- vernment offices, where he made the gar- den a very oasis in the city. Happily

the failing health which caused him to   retire from the Government service in 1904 has been restored by his strong constitu-


Mr. T. Burrchell, of Kadina, died last Friday, at the age of 85. He was the oldest resident of the town. He was born at Brinkworth, near Swinden, Wilt- shire, in 1834, and arrived at Port Ade- laide by the ship Hooghly in 1854. Be- fore coming to Australia he was a car- penter in London, and later found em- ployment as a fitter in the Great Western Railway Company's works at Swinden. On arrival at Port Adelaide he was engaged


by the late Sir Henry Ayers to help in   erecting the plant at the Burra mine. After a stay of five years he was at- tracted to Kadina through the discovery of the Wallaroo mines. He was the first licensee of the Wombat Hotel. He had, prior to this, constructed the Government

dams at the North-West Bend, on the Murray. He married Miss Augusta Johanna Fuss in April, 1857. The dia- mond wedding was celebrated in 1917. Mr.   Burchell was associated with the Loyal   Daly Oddfellows' Lodge for 57 years. A widow and a family of nine survive— Messrs. F. M. Burchell (resident engineer to the south-eastern drainage scheme, Beachport), D. Burchell (Savings Bank, Adelaide), and T. and C. Burchell (Ka- dina), and Mesdames O. Bruce (Henley Beach), B. Opie (Torrensville), A. V. Pile (Kadina), R. Clarkson (Kalgoorlie, W.A.), and R. H. Wells (Port Pirie). There are also 23 grandchildren and 19 great-grand-


Captain P. C. Piper, D.C.M., of the Australian Electrical and Mechanical Min- ing Unit, who has returned to Australia, after four years' active service, was a member of the Adelaide Fire Brigade. He gained his promotion in France. After the signing of the armistice he held a posi- tion at the great British Thomson-Houston electrical and machinery works at Rugby, England. He is a son of Mr. John Piper, of Broken Hill, and was engaged at the DeBavay process plant.

When the Mannum District Council met on Saturday the chairman (Councillor A. G. Bolte) referred to the fact that,the previous Saturday was the 40th anni- versary of Mr. J. R. Baseby's appointment as clerk to the council. He congratu- lated the clerk on his holding office continuously for such a long period, and spoke in eulogistic terms of the manner in which he had carried out his duties. He considered the clerkship of such an important district was one of the most honorable positions a man could hold. On behalf of the council he presented Mr. Baseby with a silver-mounted oak tea tray.