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  • peter-macinnis 27 Sep 2010 at 08:30
    From this date on, the word 'larrikin' appears to be in common use, at least in 'The Argus'.

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MONDAY, MARCH 21, 1870.

The Technological Commission has just issued two pamphlets which call for something more than a passing notice. One is a reprint of the official announce- ments concerning the Whitworth Scholar- ships for mechanical science, and the other is a concise resume of the present condition of practical education in Europe and Great Britain. To the first we need but briefly allude. It will be remembered that Mr. Whitworth - with a practical benevolence seldom rivalled appropriated £100,000 of his fortune to the establishment of thirty scholarships of £100 each for " intelligence and pro- ficiency in the theory and practice of   mechanics and its cognate sciences"  

The candidates are examined as to their theoretical and practical knowledge,

that is to say, they have not only to

show proficiency in the higher mathe- matics, acoustics, chemistry, and metal  

lurgy, but to exhibit practical skill in the use of the file, the saw, and plane, and the forge. The pamphlet published by order of the commission contains a number of extracts bearing on the sub- ject, and is prefaced by a brief introduc- tion from the chairman, Judge Bindon, in which he expresses a hope that it may yet be the fortune of the Techno- logical Commission to assist in founding a similar scholarship in this colony.

The second pamphlet, however, is the more important. It has been compiled by the Rev. Dr. Bleasdale (vice-chair- man of the commission), and contains much valuable compressed information on the subject of practical education. Prepared with the avowed view "of   placing before the Parliament and   people of Victoria an outline of the   state of education in regard to its practical bearing on trades and arti-   sans," it urges strongly the necessity   for immediate action on the part of the Government, and its arguments are sup- ported with an array of facts that seems irresistible. Commencing with a sketch of the conclusions arrived at by the select committee of the House of Com- mons - conclusions which recommend the introduction of elementary scientific teaching into elementary schools, and increased attention to applied science in colleges and universities - it proceeds to quote from the report of the French Commission of 1863, which gives the most notable facts concerning the condi- tion of education on the Continent. This report has been frequently cited as a proof of the great intellectual improvement of Europe, but the con- cise manner in which the evidence has been arranged in the few leaves before us, puts the grim fact of our own inferiority before us with start- ling plainness. In Germany, Switzer- land, and Austria, primary education is compulsory, and technical education easily obtained. The trade schools of

Prussia - where the state makes its car-

penters, masons, brewers, tanners, dyers, distillers, &c. - stand out in strong con- trast to the English academies, where the use of the globes is considered of more importance than the use of the plane, and where a know- ledge of the position and history of the islands of the Greek Archipelago usurps the place of information con- cerning the manufactures and produc- tions of our birthplace. The peasant or tradesman of Wurtemberg or Bavaria can attend drawing schools, and achieve a practical knowledge of any mechanical trade he pleases at a nominal expense,   and it is rare to find a Prussian, how- ever poor, who cannot read and write. The extracts from the evidence given

before the select committee of the House of Commons tell a different tale. Save in a very few towns, there is absolutely no provision made for practical instruction in technical subjects. The witnesses

although they all seem to agree that working men " desire to improve them-

selves in the science which underlies   their crafts or trades," state plainly   that such improvement is almost im- possible to be achieved. Indeed Mr. Gill, a manufacturer, says, " If I wished to send my son away to receive   such instruction as I could very easily   find for him on the Continent, I do   not know where I should send him in  

this country ; but on the Continent,   in every place of large population,   whatever may be the industry -which   employs the population, there is a   technical school in the midst of   them."  

Within the last twelve months strenuous efforts have been made to

remedy this condition of things. Special classes have been formed in the majority of English manufacturing towns, and at Bradford, Bristol, and Halifax, schools of science and art have been or are in

course of being established. To urge the imitation of this example appears to be the object of Dr. Bleasdale's paper, and the result of the inquiries made by

the commission of which he is a member

shows the necessity of such imitation. In answer to questions submitted by the commissioners to the teachers in common

schools, it was stated that object lessons formed no part of the system of instruc- tion pursued, free-hand drawing is but "occasionally" taught, and only nine teachers out of the whole number ques- tioned had passed through English Science or Technology schools. The employers of skilled labour, of whom 107 sent replies to the commissioners, give an equally disheartening report. With the exception of a few young men who attend the Artisans' School of Design in Melbourne, and about 20 attending twice a week the drawing and mathematical classes at Christ Church School, Geelong, "the body of   apprentices in the city, as well as in   country towns, do not seem to strive   to improve themselves or retain   the elements of education acquired   previously at school." That this last   statement is sadly true, the receipts of the casinos and the records of the

city police court attest. The condi-

tion of the Mechanics' Institutes

appears no less unsatisfactory. From places of instruction, they seem to

have become a mixture of the concert-

room and the circulating library. Out of 51 (replying on the 27th November) only two - Portarlington and Williamstown - have classes. Not one of them has any series of models or diagrams, few have maps of Australia or geological survey maps, and fewer still elementary or advanced class-books treating of technical subjects, and the sums of money granted by the Govern- ment would seem to have been expended principally in the purchase of books of general literature.  

To remedy this, Dr. Bleasdale pro- poses a somewhat sweeping scheme of reform. "The whole system of our common schools," says he, "needs to     be remodelled, much unprofitable gram-   mar and geography turned out, and in   place of them drawing, object lessons,   &c., and to the more advanced classes   the elements of chemistry and natural   sciences." We are not prepared at   this stage of the question to enter into argument upon this bold suggestion, but we do not attempt to deny the state- ment, that while children in our common schools can give a fair account of out of the way places, straits, and islands, "they are ignorant of the physical out-   line of Victoria, the watershed of the  

Yarra, the position of Beechworth,   or the navigable portions of the river   Murray." The same objection to the   undue prominence given to historical over practical knowledge was made by the English commissioners, and is one of the causes which they assigned for the low standard of useful knowledge throughout Great Britain. They pro- posed to remedy it by the establishment of industrial museums and the institu- tion of technological lectures, and their remedy has proved already partially successful. The industrial museum in connexion with the Edinburgh Uni- versity is largely attended, especially in the evenings, by the working classes. At the Andersonian Institute, the lectures draw "crowds of working "men;" and at the

schools of design and textile art, the voluntary students are nearly all young apprentices or me- chanics. To us - with our newspapers besieged with letters on the lack of practically educated clerks and foremen, and our police sheets daily filled with fresh accounts of " larrikin" exploits and " colonial cad" outrages - these statements should have a very grave significance. To suddenly and violently alter the whole system of education at present obtaining would be perilous and we think unnecessary, but the establishment of industrial and tech- nological schools is comparatively easy, and is, as we understand, the pecu- liar function of the commission. We fully agree with the sentiments which prompted the publication of these pam- phlets, and we trust to see some course of action decided upon. The circula- tion of the papers we have now briefly noticed will make the public more eager

to see such excellent principles reduced   to practice.

We are glad to see the desire mani- fested in the City Council to make available the vast service which the River Yarra can render to the health of crowded Melbourne. There ought to be no further delay in carrying out the project, long talked about, of suitable excavations on the river bank, where bathing might be enjoyed at all hours without let or hindrance. It is of the utmost consequence to encourage the habit of personal cleanliness among the people, instead of discouraging it, which we effectually do while we neglect to afford the opportunity. There is no popular horror of cold water under a sun like ours, as there is in the chilly atmo- sphere and among the underfed masses of northern Europe. Here, throughout half the year, the practice of frequent im- mersion is too sensible a luxury not to be appreciated by all persons in robust health. The ignorant or the careless may not regard its usefulness, but they understand its pleasure. It is climate more than education-than a knowledge of the laws of health-which is the popularising influence. We see that the savages of the South Seas are as fond of the practice as ever were the polished Athenians. But no matter whether the moving cause be the senses or common sense, the individual inclina- tion, if it can have its way, is the public gain 5 and we have precedent enough for believing that it is entirely the fault of the authorities that personal cleanli- ness is not yet as universal here as it ought to be, or as it will be.

Look at the very many thousands of the inhabitants of Melbourne who are at present debarred from the habit of daily or frequent ablution-whose dwellings are too poor or narrow for the Yan Yean bath-who have not money for daily resort to the pre- sent public baths in town-or time or money for the railway trip and the plunge in the sea. Why should so many thousands be deprived of this potent and necessary aid to health, when, with a paltry outlay of trouble and cash, we can render the water available to all, like the air 1 Why should not even our street arabs be able

to gratify their very decided amphibious propensity, like the children who have parents and friends to see to their wrell being 1 The health of any one quarter of our metropolis, of any one class of our population, affects all. In sanitary matters it is literally true that "St. Giles's "cannot suffer without St. James's also

"suffering." Whatever maybe the defects of Young Australia-and the typical " colonial boy " is not just yet a very promising being-he at any rate pro- mises to be free from two of the most disagreeable habits .which are only too popular in the old country. He will neither have the passion for intoxicating drinks, nor the desire to remain un v» ashed. Indeed, every succeeding sum- mer, as the new generation bred in the cli- mate grows up, it becomes more and more difficult to keep the banks of the Yarra frombeinginfestedbycrowdsof miniature semi-Tritons, tumbling in and out of the water like young ducks, or by nude striplings big and ugly enough to know that they should not be there at im- proper hours. This last summer the nuisance has been more prevalent than ever. The river, which was once so agreeable a resort of pleasure parties, cannot be surrendered to this bathing purpose, nor can bathing be suffered où the exposed banks of a stream which skirts a city and its populous suburbs. But the great service and the various pleasures which the Yarra can render to a town like Melbourne, ought to be so arranged and provided for that they w¿uld pot interfere with and frustrate each otitvr as they do now. The pro- posed underT^king of the corporation will not cost, it Is »calculated, more than £1,500-a trifling huh!, truly, in view of the public advantages of the work !

It is proposed to select some site on the Yarra banks most accessible from the city-either on the flat facing the end of Spring-street, or near Princes bridge, adjoining the boat clubs, where there is already a hollow piece of ground where rain-water lodges. It ia there intended to excavate a capa- cious basin communicating with the stream, furnished with sheds and en- closed from vjew both on the lanr*4 and river Bides. The great thing to bear in mind, both in the choice of a site and in the construction, is that the basin will be used by great numbers of persons, and in summer by great numbers at the one time-to have it thus largely used is, in fact, the sple object of its construc- tion. So the water within the basin will

need to be as fresh and overflowing as that in the river without. To accomplish this and keep up a sufficient current and constant change of the water, there will require to be two channels of connexion with the Yarra-one above to receive the stream, and the other below to dis- charge it ; and both channels will have to be wide and deep enough to effect this satisfactorily. Unless there can be a constant chaDge of the element it must of course be impure, and the work will be spoiled, and might as well be let alone. In setting about the task, it is worth while to carry it out on a proper scale and in a proper manner. As we cannot set aside I a section of tho river itself for bath- ing purposes, it only.remains to con $ tnve a diversion of the Yarra to form an

Je t'rrtificial branch for this necessary

Zahlie service. We venture thus 'to ?urge this point, absolutely essential, be- cause before the work is begun is the time to consider what it should be like, and because the example set by the Melbourne Town Council is sure to ,be followed by the municipal authorities iin many other places. Our populous suburbs, like Eichmond and East Col- lingwood, to which the presence of the Yarra affords a .similar opportunity, ought to similarlj undertake such works, so inexpensive and so useful. Within the basin it ¿s intended that there shall be different depths of water, duly jnarked, ¿o accommodate the swimmers and tlose who cannot swim, with jpers.ns always in attendance, both io prevent accidents and to keep order; and doubtless with the taste which is rarely wanting in our public works, this bathing place and its ap- proaches will soon be shaded and beauti- fied by the plantation of trees and shrubs, and creeping plants. The Greeks and Romans spared no expense in the costly adornment of their public baths by the skill of the architect and the sculptor, but simple nature also offers very charming and appropriate means of enhancing their agreeableness.

As to the question of a small admis- sion fee, we confess we would prefer to see the admission entirely free-without even a penny toll. We want to encou- rage in the poorest the desire for fre- quent ablution which naturally arises under a hot sun. It is for them that baths are required, and even a penny toll would often, if not always, exclude many; and it is desirable to exclude none. It is only the poor who have now much reason to complain of the want of bathing accommodation. Since the Yan Yean was introduced all dwel- lings not of the humblest can possess the necessary appliances.

The usual meeting of the City Council will Ijc held this afternoon. Various applications having been made for the vacant rate-col lectoiship of Gipps Ward, a choice will be made or further applications invited. Merrr hers will bo called upon to deal with the question of transferring all the offensive trades and factories to Fisherman's Bend on the Yarra, and also with the proposal to grant a site of land for a match factory on the vacant ground beside the road leading from the Falls-bridge to Emerald-hill. The usual reports of the different committees will be brought up, and their recommenda- tions for the prosecution of certain necessary works will bo submitted.

We give elsewhere a brief account of the .picnic to which the proprietors of The Argus and The Australasian annually invite the employés on the staffs of those two journals. It was a most enjoyable affair, and everything ivent off perfectly. Shortly before noon tho guests, numbering about 400, were taken by special train to the Flemington course, where they wore entertained at a banquet admirably provided by Mr. Clements, of Swanston-street. Dancing and cioquet for the ladies, and foot laces for the men and boys, formed the load- ing amusements, which amply suited the general taste. The wind shifted suddenly lound to the south during the afternoon but only to produce greater comfort. At 6 p.m. the proceedings ended, and tho party returned by train to town.

In reply to a letter from the secretary of the conference of delegates who met to consider the advisability of taking steps to have the Sbires Statute amended, the Commissioner of Railways and Roads has intimated that it is not the intention of Government at present to introduce any measure for the amendment

?of that statute.

The remains of the late Mr, C. J. Dawson were interred on Saturday at tho St. Kilda ?General Cemetery, the funeral being at -tended hy some of tho relatives of the do ceased and by a number of the members of the bar. The funeral cortège moved at 10 o'clock from the house of Dr. Gunst, in Col- lins-street, where Mr. Dawson was residing at the time of his death. In the first mourning coach were Mrs. Dawson and two of her bro- thers ; in the second Judge Cope and Mr. J. C. H. Ogier. At All Saints'Church, St. Kilda, the procession stopped for a time, and part of the burial service of the Church of England was read by the Rev. J. H. Gregory. The funeral then proceeded to the cemetery, where the hurial service was concluded. The coffin was placed in a brick grave near the place where the late Mr. Justice Wise, of Sydney, is huried. The pall-bearers were-His Honour Sir W. F. Stawell, the Chief Justice ; Judge .Cope, Mr. R. A, Billing, Dr. F. S. Dobson,

Mr. T. A'Beckett, and Mr. Worthington. In our obituary notice of Saturday we omitted to state that Mr. Dawson was brother to a physician who has an extensive practice in london.

?The autumn show of the Horticultural Society of Victoria was brought to a close on Saturday night. The attendance pn the third day was no better than the previous day. Stoneham's band was present in the afternoon

and evening, and in very good style they went .through the programme of music which it was =armtrunced they would play ; they also per ?formed several selections from " Faust" and other operas. The result of the present attempt on. the part of the Horticuh

tural Society to revive their autumn 'exhibitions can be given in a fetf words. It has answered very well Bimply xts a show of garden and orchard produco Tho various gardeners who were in a position to send in exhibits exerted themselves to Ttiake tho exhibition a success, and the ama- teurs lent able assistance. But as an attempt to please the public the show seems to bavç answered badly, for the number of visitors on the whole has been small, not large enouglj on any day except the first to warrant the ex Hbition being kept open. Looking forward to the noxt show, however, it is not likely that the society will have to complain of the same lack of patronage, should they again toe successful in securing as suitable a building, and as meritorious a collection of exhibits. '? ae ^r. Mackay, Mr. Fellows, and Mr. Lawes, nave been elected as the board of examiners for barristers for the present year. Mr. J. M. Smith, Mr. J. Macgregor, and Mr. T. J. Wjburn have been appointed the board of examiners for attorneys,

A point of importance to friendly- societies respecting the interpretation of a portion of the 12th and lflth sections' of "thé -Frièàdty

Societies' Act, has been recently brought un- der the notice of the Attorney General, and decided by him definitively. As iq doubtless known to most members of these societies, under the 12th section a fee is payable to the certifying barrister for revising rules, whether

now or amended., Frequently, it appears, ( rules require alterations beforo being certified ] as correct, and in this case it has been usual

to charge a second fee on ith'eir being again , lodged with the barrister for fresh revision, The view of the meaning of the Act which allows of a second fee has, however, been chal- lenged by some of the societies. At the be-

ginning of this year the Ararat society ) denied the right to a second fee, and fo? warded a letter to the Attorney-General, asking for his decision. In reply, Mr. Mac Donnell, on February 23, expressed his opinion that a second fee was payable. Last week the Fortland Lodge of Foresters, also, on being called on for a second fee, for- warded a formal protest, and have intimated that they leave themselves open to such a course as shall seem advisable under the circumstances. We may state that the words of the 12th section are, that "on every lodgment of transcript of rules or altciations" the certifying barrister shall be entitled, &c. ; and this rendering is

made more apparent by the reading of the 13th section. It is no moro than justice to Dr. Dobson to state that, though thus entitled to a fresh fee on "every lodgment," he has hitherto refrained from charging moro than two fees, though in «ne case, at least, rules were returned and re-lodged about half a dozen times, There can be little doubt that, with the prospect of this penalty, as it may bo called, for bad drafting, due care will bo used henceforth hy the friendly societies in preparing rules upon the right working of which so much of their prosperity depends.'

The Technological Commission havo pub- lished two pamphlots on tho subject of Indus, trial Education. The first is a reprint from the Government Gazelle of the 19th November. 1809, and consists of tho papers relative to the offer of Mr. Whitworth to endow scholarships for mechanical science. Thirty scholarships of £100 each are, by the munificence of Mr (now Sir Joseph) Whitworth, open to all subjects of Her Majesty, whether of the United Kngdom, India, or the colonies, who do not exceed the age of 2C, and can bo held for two or three years. These scholarships are to be awarded according to the results of tho examination of the science and art de.

partaient in the following subjects, as defined in tho Science Directory :-(1) Elementary mathematics ; (2) higher mathematics ; (3) theoretical mechanics ; (4) applied mecha- nics ; (5) practical plane and solid geometry ; (0) machino construction and drawing ; (7) acoustics, light, and heat; (8) magnetism and electricity ; (9) inorganic chemistry ; (10) metal, lurgy ; and according to the skill shown hy the competitors in a special examination in tho following handicrafts--(1) smith's work ; (2) turning ; (3) filing and fitting ; (4) pattern making and moulding, or in the use of the following classes of tools:-the axe, tho saw and plane, the hammer and chisel, the file and tho forge. Ten of these scholarships were awarded last May. The pamphlet states that no official account of the number of candidates, or the particulars of the various examinations, has yet reached the commission, but statements havo appeared to tho effect that a fair proportion of tho suc- cessful wer<i taught at mechanics' institutes in the manufacturing districts of England. The other, and more lengthy, paper is a compilation by the Rev. Dr. Bleasdale (vice chairman of the Commission) from the re- ports of the Select Committee of the House of Commons in 1808, and the French Commis- sion in 1863. Several of tho most important answers, taken in evidence before the House, are given in full, as are also some valuablo extracts from the French report, concerning primary instruction in Germany and France, together with a brief account of the " appren. tice" system and trade schools. Dr. Bleasdale quotes from the repoit of the Technological Commission concerning the amount of prac- tical instruction in Victorian Common Schools and tho management of mechanics' institutes in tbo colony. The conclusion he draws is, " that Victorian education, whether primary or adult, has hitherto had but little reference to the after-life of the child or the improvement of the adult;" and he avers that nothing will meet tho difficulty but tho remodelling of " the whole system of our Common Schools."

A correspondent writes:-"In December, 1869, an act was passed by the Government of Victoria, called 'The Stamp Statute, 1809,' and section 2 says, ' This act shall come into

operation on tho 1st day of January, 1870Í1

By section 8, the Governor in Council may from time to time frame such rules as may appear to bo necessary for carrying out this act, and for regulating the use of stamps under it, and particularly for prescribing the application thereof to documents, &c. All such rules, when published in the Government Gazette, shall have the force of law. Up to tho present time such rules have not been gazetted, and the Stamp Statute, 1869, there- fore becomes a dead letter. The word ' Minis- ter ' in the act means the responsible Minister of the Crown administering tho act. Het with the Governor in Council, it is hoped will ere long fulfil and carry out the powers thereby given them. " ,

Tho Government Astronomer reports : " The weather during the past week was fine, but very dry, and generally hot, until shortly after noon of the 19th, when a dust storm set in, with a strong, cool, southerly breeze, and boisterous and squally weather. The highest temperature in the shade, 90.0°, was registered at noon on the 19th : the low- est, 50.0°, on the early morning of the 13th ¡ the highest reading of tho barometer (30157in.) occurred on the morning of the 14th with light southerly wind ; tho lowest (29'899in.) on tho morning of tho 19th, with a light northerly breeze, and the barometer throughout the week was re- markably steady. The total rainfall since the beginning of the year amounts to 3'39in., as compared with 2'38in. for tho same period in 1869; 3'34in. for 1868; 4'91in. for 1867 ; 2'89in. for 1866 ; l'85in. for 1865; 6'44in. for 1864; 8-22in. for 1863; 2'42in. for 1862; 9'09in. for 1861; S^in. for IS'60 ; 3"75in. for 1859 ; 0 09in. for 1858 ; or an average of 4*60in."

The term of foreign service of the 2nd battalion of the 14th Regiment having ex- pired, the men, numbering in all about 400, together with the soldiers' wivos and families, were embarked early on Saturday morning, on board the Walmer Castle, the ship chartered to convey them to England. By 7 o'clock all were on board, and soon afterwards the ship was moved well out from the shore, opposite the Williamstown Pier. The vessel is understood to he under orders to sail this morning, but from the confusion on board, and the inefficient state of the cooking apparatus, it is not likely the vessel

will sail until this defect has been remedied. The battalion stationed in Melbourne has been supplemented by the detachments from Sydney, Adelaide, and Hobart Town during tho last few days. The men of the 18th aj; present in barracks in Melbourne, have been employed of late in hunting up the stragglers of whom there are still a good number abroad. Tho police arrested a few yesterday, who were at once handed over to thp military autho ritics, and sent on board. The sea kit for the mon was furnished by the Leviathan Clothing Company. During the time the 14th, Regi- ment had been stationed in Melbourno, they hove not been very well behaved, and some time since their conduct was so disorderly as to call for very unfavourable comment. Of late, however, they have been much less fre _uontly , beforç the public for misbehaviour.

The English'champion'pedestrians art) tq make another appearance on the Melbourne

Cricket-ground prior to their departure for Now South Wales. The eventi in which they will take part arc a handicap running match, divided into three races, at three different distances, viz., o' quarter of a mile, half a mile, and a mile ; and a handicap walking match, also at three distances, viz., one mile, two miles, and three miles. 'The programme will include other events not yet decided upon. The days fixed for the sports aro Saturday and Monday, the 2nd and 4th April. Entries for tbo different races will be received at the Port Phillip Club Hotel, on Monday noxt, between the hours of 8

and 0.

Mr, J, G-. Harris writes to correct sc-töo of the statements attributed to Mr. Howitt in a paragraph which appeared in Saturday's Argus. The true facts of the case are, Mr. Harris says, that Hewitt never met him to arrange matters. As to tho statement that he absented himself from meetings on two occasions Mr. Harris says that on the first occasion he was absent on account of ill-health, and on the other occasion (Thnrs da>) he promised to meet'the backers at 1 o'clock, but finding that he could not bo pre- sent at tho exact time ho sent a friend to request them to wait a few minutes for him. His friend arrived there at a few minutes after the hour named, when he found they had loft. As regards the appointment of a judge, Harris says ho mentioned a number of gentlemen, and amongst them Mr. J. Edwards, jun., Mr. W. Craig, of Ballarat, Mr. J. Cleeland, and several others, but Hewitt's backers would not agree to any of them. He is just as anxious, ho says, as Howitt, to run the race, but not to his own disadvan- tage. It is very strango, ho remarks, that on the Saturday evening, when ho asked when the 300 yards would be run off, Hewitt's backers distinctly said they would not run it off, but that on the Monday, after tho 100 jards race, when ho was suffering from a severe cold, Hewitt's backers wanted to compel him to run the race. They now, ho adds, want him to run it off under their own management, which he certainly will not consent to do. He is quite willing, however, to meet Hewitt in any way upon fair terms. Harris's explanations do not appear to us to affect the main points of Hewitt's state-

ment.

The stakeholder in the late matches be- tween Harris and Hewitt writes to us to cor- rect an en or which crept into our columns last Saturday. Ho informs in that the stakes in the 300 yards race-viz. £200-are still in his hands, but that tho stakes in the other four matches, which amounted in all to £800, have been paid over some time since. The stakes in the 300 yards race will bo given up as soon as the respective backers come to an understanding in the matter.

A handicap trotting race of four miles has been added to the programme of the Ballarat Autumn Steeplechases. The race will bo for a sweepstakes of £5, with £30 added. Each hoise must draw or carry 11 stone, and tho handicap, as is the practice in all trotting races, will be by distance.

His Honour Judgo Pohlman was engaged for some time on Saturday, at the County Court, hearing the caso of M'Oarlhy v. Barn/ and Others, in which the plaintiff sought to recover £08 los , two months'salary as medical officer of the St. Patrick's Society. The facts of the case aro almost identical with those of an action heard byjas'Honour about throe months ago, in which Dr, M'Carthy sued the defendants for one month's salary, and which was reported in our columns at the time. The case had not concluded at the rising of tho court. It will be resumed to-day after

the undefended cases.

The trial of William Davis for the murdor of his paramour, Elizabeth Garford, termi- nated on Saturday in a very unsatisfactory manner. Tho caso as put by the Crown was one of murder and nothing else, the evidence adduced was in support of that charge, and it was not even suggested by tho counsel for the defence that the crime, if committed at all by the prisoner, was anything else. The judge also charged for murder, but tho jury found the prisoner guilty of manslaughter. His Honour said that as the evidence was all of a circumstantial nature, he did not like to refuse to accept the verdict, but in sentencing the. prisoner to 10 years' hard labour, he told him he might think himsolf exceedingly fortunato that the jury had dealt so leniently with him. Sentences were passed upon the following prisoners, who were convicted during the sessions :-James Baker and William Arm- strong, l8 months' imprisonment with hard labour, for receiving stolen property ; Michael Hay, to five years' with hard labour, for aison ; Charles Watson, to two years' with hard labour, for horse-stealing ; James Keefe and James Ferguson, to 12 months' with hard labour, for stealing from'a dwelling ; H. Fer- guson, to four months' imprisonment, for manslaughter ; Mark Gowan, a soldier of the 14th Regiment, to seven years' with hard labour, for an attempt at rape ; Walter Clare, to 12 months' imprisonment, for steal- ing from the person ; and Adolf Johnson, to seven years' with hard labour, for shooting with intent to do grievous bodily harm. In passing the last sentence, his Honour alluded in complimentary terms to tho courage, per severance, and determination of Constable Dalton, who arrested the prisoner, and said he had behaved most admirably. It is but fair to mention that Sergeant Eicke also dei

serves some commendation for his share in the capture. t

The jurors summoned for the Melbourno Criminal Sessions, who wero discharged on Saturday until this morning, are informed by a notification from the deputy shoriff that their further attendance will not be required, the sessions having terminated.

Two boys, named Morgan and White- side, wero arrested yesterday for disorderly conduct in Little Lonsdale-street east, where they had been, with others, haunting a bakehouse, and upsotting tho dinners of people who wero convoying home their mid-

day meal.

The dotcctives require an owner for a large antimacassar, which was found in the posses- sion of two thieves, named Jackson and Bar foot, who are charged with stealing it

Last week some one entered the bar of the Belvidere Hotel, corner of Victoria-parade and Brunswick-street, and "stole a äesk, con- taining valuable papers, including cheques; also, malting off with a box of cigars and some bottles of brandy. The cheques have been stopped at the bank on which they were drawn, and the police are on the look-out for

the burglar.

Adolph Thevcs, some time sinco committed for trial on two separate, charges of theft, was brought up on a writ of ¡tabeas corpus al the Geelong < Police Court on Saturday) charged with stealing knives, forks, and other articles, valued at £4, the property of Mr. Hi R. Gosling. Tho articles had been found in the prisoner's trunk, and wore idontifiediby the owner. The prisoner was committed for trial. ' '

The Bendigo Waterworks Company wore fined £10, and £"> 3s. costs, on Saturday, at the'Sandhurst Police Court, for* not,supply- ing water to A. Thunder, for trading pur- poses. The police magistrate gave it as his opinion that under the ,C8th'seotion of^ttycir act the company were forced to supply \pa^or for trading purpo.es at the 'rate ,of;2s. 'por 1,000 gallons. Notice of appeal was given, and execution stayed, i > - ?> >

On Friday, a son of Mr. Halfey, of Haw- thorn, nhout 10 Wrs old,,'was drowned whilst bathing in a dangerous part,of the Yarra at Hawthorn. At tbo inquest held on Saturday the jury praised tho conduot of a boy named' Walter Turner, who at personal risk had endoavoured to rescue tho drowning boy. u i , i i ) I

A serious accident happened in a somewhat curious manner on Saturday night'to Der

tective Carter. The detective was running rapidly across Russell street, in Little Collins street, when hu ran against the shaft of a cab coming along Russell-street. The cabman, who was driving slowly, tried to pull up, but the detective was running too fast, and the shaft struck him violently in tho chesty which was severely injured internally, besides show- ing a severe depression oxtornally. He was taken to the hospital, and at a late hour last night was in a very precarious condition.

Edmund Devit, aged 3í years, was brought to the hospital on Saturday afternoon from Riddoll's Creek, with his left arm badly wounded by the explosion of a blast in a quarry at Sunbury. Jane Spence, aged 12 years, was also taken to the hospital, from Hotham, suffering from a light fracture to the left arm, caused by a fall.

Mr. Thomas Cowan addressed a meeting of the electors of the South-Western Province, at Geelong, on Saturday afternoon. The attendance, numbering nearly 100, was prin- cipally composed of farmers, for whose special benefit tho meeting was called. Mi. T. H. Widdicombo was voted to the chair. Mr. Thomas Cowan delivored a short address, enlarging upon tho various topics in his pub- lished address. He stated in reference to the two lines of railway sought for in the Wostorn District, that he considered it was the duty of the Government to provide for the construc- tion of both lines, ono from Geelong to Hamilton, via Colac, and the other passing from Ballarat thence, but if it was found that both could not be done at once, he would be in favour of the line from Geelong to Colac being constructed, even although it would be against the interests of some of his consti tuents. He was in favour of asecular system of education, and would give his best attention to water supply, believing that these works wherever carried out, were conducivo to tho prosperity of the towns supplied. Ho stated in reply to a question that ho was not in favour of a reduction in the qualification of voters for the Upper House, but he would re. duce the time for which a member was elected from ten to five years. Ho would also bo in favour of a largo province liko the South Western Province being divided, so that Bal larat could have one member, Geelong another, and Colac and other places another. At present it was impossible for one man to attend to the interests of all. In reply to another question, the candidate stated he was satisfied with the present tariff, and did not wish to disturb it. Should the Assembly pass a measure at any time for imposing increased duties on wheat, ho would giro it his attention. He did not, however, believe in taxing necessaries With respect to mining, ho would endeavour to get the rents of land leased reduced, and in the winding up of companies would be in favour of giving the Court of Mines tho power to deal with tho whole matter of wind- ing up and distributing, instead of having the unworkable plan of proving in that court and suing in the police court. The question had been asked, what had Mr. Cowan done that he should he elected. He wouldstate one fact in reply. Ho had been for sovon years connected with local bodies-two years as member of the Ballarat Road Board, and five ycaTS as member of the borough council of Ballarat West. He was at one time engaged in a conference

Melbourno, in connexion with borough matters, and was tho means of getting the plurality clauses inserted in the Borough Bill. That had been repealed, hut the clauses were retained in the now act. Having an- swered the questions apparently to the satis- faction of the meeting, the usual vote of confidence in the candidate, as a fit and proper person to represent the South-Western Province in the Legislative Council, was, on the motion of Mr. Matthew Minnis, carried, there being only a few dissentients. Many, however, did not hold up their hands. The proceedins closed by a vote of thanks to the chairman. A committeo was subsequently formed. Mr. Cowan addresses the electors at the Geelong town-hall this evening, and intends visiting the various country districts prior to Friday, holding public meetings in each place.

Information has been given to the Ballarat Courier of a land transaction which, as it says, ought to be thoroughly investigated: - " ft seems that at the land sale which was con- ducted by Mr, Megson, at Mr. Dyte's rooms,

Ballarat, last Monday, five allotments imme- diately north and north-east of the Mount Mercer pre-emptive section were put up for sole. These allotments were numbered on the sale note as 48, 49, SO, 51, and 52. The upset price in each case was £1 per aero. Allotment 48, which consisted of 79a. Or. 27p., was first put, and, after a spirited competition, was knocked down at £2 10s. per acre to Mr. R. Boll, the gentle

man who owns tho Mount Mercer Sta- tion, and whose pre eruptive section is referred to in the description given of the locality of the land. The sum at which the land was bought was not reached by competi- tion confined to one person, but, as it is stated to us, extended to several bidders. What fol- lowed is said to have been this : -Either Mr. Bel), or some one on his behalf, placed him- self in communication with these bidders whilo the deposit-money was being paid on the allotment already purchased and the signature of the purchaser was being taken in the hook or sheet provided for that purpose. The object of this step was to prevent their opposing Mr. Bell in his endeavour to pur- chase the remaining four allotments at the upset price. Our informant then goes on to state that all theso competitors were bought off from bidding for tho remaining allot- ments, and that one man received as much as £70 not to oppose Mr. Bell in their purchase. Theso four allotments contain together the large area of 447 acres in round numbers, and it is a significant circumstance that Mr, Bell obtained this broad stretch of country at the upset price of £1 per acre. Assuming our informant's tale to be sound, the raattor simply amounts to this --That Mr. Bell has obtained 447 acres of land, well worth, we are told, £3 per acre, at the upset price of £1 » and, hy buying off all competition, tho state has been dofrauded of somothing like, say, £600 or £700, oven allowing the four allot- ments were worth no more than the -ISth, which Mr. Bell purchased before this negotia- tion is alleged to have been originated and .consummated."

A paragraph extracted from a country jour- nal appeared in our Saturday's issue to tho effect that Mr. Nicolson, of the Defectivo force, coincided with an opinion said to have been expressed by Detective Black-who has been sent to Dromana to investigato the truth ' of an assertion that the wrong person had been executed for the murder of Margaret Graham-" that as the woman Driscoll, alias the ' Long-un,' who had threatened Graham' -i wife, was dead, it was useless to continue the inquiry." Mr. Nicolson, who has loft tho Detective force, and is now Superintendent ot Police' at Kyneton, wishes us to state that he never, either directly or indireotlyIf expressed his concurrence with tho opinion 'attribute^ to Detective Black.

? The Williamstown Rifle Club held their fourth -meeting for the year for shooting foi* prizes'last Saturday. The principal prfro was a trophy with £1 lös. added. The disi tances were 200, 500, aud 600 yards ; seven rounds at each range, in any position,, with any large-bore rifle. Tho fust prize was won

by Sergoant Knight, who scored 59 points |

the second prizo by Gunner Pitt, and the third by Sergeant Nolan. The competitors were handicapped. Although the latter comf petitor only made 58 points in this match, his average during tho last four matches has been

61. The shooting was not so good as usual)

owing to the strong wind,which blew up the

course all the afternoon. j

" Tho river was very much neglected on

1 Saturday, > there being hardly any boataout

-i.cept a few of the crews iii training for 'the approaching regatta. All those who really intend going for the various prizrt» have now commenced strong work, and should they persevere in their preparation theresbould be some excellent sport on the river on the IGth and 18th of April.

The Saltwater River was crowded with anglers on Saturday, but tho baskets as a rule were light. Some porsons low down the river are said to have been very successful as far as numbers were concerned, but the fish were small. Some very good baskets of fish were taken on Monday and Tuesday. Altogether, the weok has been a very good one for the lovors of the " gentle craft." '

The particulars of a shocking railway accident which occurred near Woodend on Thursday, aro given by tho Kyneton Observer: -"We regret to havo to record anothor fatal railway accident, which occurred at Middle ton's Crossing, about a mile and a half this side of Woodend, and which was discovered shortly after tho'passing of tho special train conveying the metropolitan visitors to the Kyneton races on their return journey, lit appears that a man named Thomas Scott, in the employ of Mr. Middleton, left the homestead for tho purpose of fetching home the cattle (Mr. Middleton's land extends on each side of tho railway line, and ho has accommodation gates), and it is surmised that it was while he was driving the cows across the line that ho was struck by the advancing train, and killed. About one or two hours afterwards, that is, before the arrival of the passenger trains at tho spot, the mangled remains were discovered by a labourer in the employ of Mr. Savage, namod Myrick, who made the best of his way to Woodend, and gave information, and some of the íailway people at once started up the line.and removed the body, or, rather, what was left of it, from the five-feet way in which it was lying. It presented a most frightful spectaclo, the legs being cut off, and the top of tho skull re- moved. Death must have been quite instan- taneous. The remains wore conveyed to Thorburn, Hotel, where they now await an inquest. Scott was a very steady and indus- trious man, the possessor, if wo aro correctly informed, of a farm in Tasmania. So far as we can learn, tho railway officials in charge of the express train had no knowledge of the fatal catastrophe, but perhaps at tho inquest more particulars will be obtained."

With îefeience to tho projected railway line between Beechworth and Wangaratta, the Ovens Spectator says:-"The railway will cost at the outside £150,000, of which Govern- ment gives £30,000. It is proposed to raiso this in 24,000 shares of £5 each, and it is cal-

culated that if a fifth of the amount is taken up in this district the rest will bo easy of ac- complishment. A deposit of 6s. is to be paid on allotment, which must be made within six weeks from the present time. There will not bo moro than ono call of 10s, per share during the current year ; and future colls will not exceed 10s, per share nor quarter. Each shareholder's liability will not exceed the amount of shares subscribed for. Tho Government are offering evory facility for the enterprise, and, amongst othdr things, have agreed to carry tho rails as soon as tho main line is open to Wangaratta for a merely nominal sum, which will save several thousands of pounds." >

The floods in New South Wales havo been very destructive. Wc learn from our Sydnoy telegram that the town of Windsor, which is situated on tho Hawkesbury, 31 miles N.W. of Sydney, has been partly submerged by the flood waters of that river. " There has been, '. says our correspondent, "immenso destruc- tion of crops, live stock, and other property.'1

A case has been brought under our notico, in which the benovolence of the community might bo very properly exercised. An old soldier named Knight, who sorvod as a cor- poral in tho 95th Regiment, and fought for his country at Bergen-op-zoom, in 1813, and at Waterloo in 1815, finds, at the age of 73. that he has nothing to maintain him except a trilling pension of Cd. per day. As his age prevents him from doing much for his living, he is obliged to ask for assistance. He can bo communicated with at 17 Little Lonsdale street west.

A telegram in the Oeylon Observer, dated Shanghai, January 25, gives the following items of intelligence not contained in the Australian mail news:-Count Rochehouarfc, the French Minister, has visited Nanchang, the capital of Kiangse, via the Poyang Lake, and obtained satisfaction for somemissionary difficulties«-thatneighbourhood. He reached Kinkiang on the 15tb, en route for Hankow and Szerchuen. Captain Blanch, of the ship Newcastle, has been committed for trial for murder, and D. MocAUister for being ac- cessory to the mnrdor of the lato carpenter of that vessel. Captain Blanch treated the crew as in a state of mutiny when at Foo-chow.

The entertainments of General Tom Thumb and suite, at the Polytechnic-hall, wore well attended on Saturday. The diminutive troupe begin a brief suburban tour to-day, com- mencing with Emerald-hill.

A game of billiards waa played on Satur- day afternoon, at tho Union Club Hotel, be- tween Commodore Nutt and a well-known professional player, in which the former came off victorious. A return match between the

samo players will bo played this afternoon at

C o'clock.

We have received from the publisher, a pamphlet by Melmoth Hall, entitled Plain Hints to Plain Men for (he Cultivation of the Sugar Gane. The hints appear plain enough, but tho pamphlot will prove far more interesting to New South Wales than Vic- torian settlors.

Tho Clerks' Mutual Registration Society ia endeavouring to increase its usefulness by establishing a registry of vacancies in lodging houses, &c.o for the information of new arrivals and visitors from tho country, Lists are sent monthly to Sydney, Now Zealand, Tasmania, and Adelaido, of apartments vacant, with their charges, &c, tho_ agonts of tho association in those places sending in re- turn similar lists.

Tho residents ia Victoria and the adjacent streets in Collingwood and North Richmond aro invited in an advertisement which ap- pears in The Argus to attend an open-air meeting on Saturday next, at 8 p.m., at tho cornor of Victoria and William streets, to consider various matters affecting the welfaro of the ratepayers in the locality indicated.

The second of the series of Ioctures in aid of St. George's Church, Malvern, was given on Friday night at the Prahran Town-ball by Mr. T. P. HiU, in place of the Hon. B. C. Aspi nail, w ho was prevented by official duties from delivering a lecture. The subject was " Brain Printing, and though the hall was scarcely half filled the audience showed a remarkable amount of interest in the observations of the lectuier. The Rev. T. C. Cole occupied the

chair.

The sixth anniversary service of tho Sun- day School Instituto was held on Sunday afternoon at St. Paul's Church, Swanston street, at which ' over 1500 children wero present with their, teachers. The children,1 from their appearance and genoral good behaviour during the servico, clearly showed that these annual ro-unions aro looked for- ward to with pleasure. The Ruv. G. O. Vaneo dolivored an address to tho childron during tho afternoon.

Wo havo received a copy of an official mail calendar for 1870-71, printed by Mr. H. Cor- dell, of 30 Flinders-lane west. The purpose for which the calendar has been propared is to show the dates of the arrivals and departures of thd mail steamers to and from the various-ports at which they may stop. It has been com; piled by tho officials of the P. aud O. Com- pany. Such a calendar has never been, pub- lished before, and it will prove of essential servico, especially to the mercantile com4 munity.

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