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1896, George Davis - Unfit For Publication
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Evening News, Mon 15 Feb 1897 1

COUNTRY NOTES.
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    The adjourned annual meeting of the Inverell Hospital was held on Monday, when the result of the ballot for the committee was declared as appended: Messrs A Bloore, J Sinclair, JW Anderson, F Hargrave, JJR Gibson, WJ Davis, C Crothers, T Mather, E Grainger, A Oliver, J Ingram, and J Spicer (writes our correspondent). At the meeting of the committee, which followed, Mr J Sinclair was re-elected president, Drs Lane and Vallee medical officers at a salary of £100 per annum; Mr and Mrs Adams, wardsman and matron; Mr JW Anderson, treasurer; Messrs Gibson, Mather, and Davis, ground committee. It was decided that applications be called for the position of secretary at a salary of £30 per annum. Mr A Bloore had filled the position of hon secretary for two years.

    A discussion took place re Dr Sawkins’s letter dealing with the admission of phthisis patients. It was decided that Dr Sawkins be informed that, whilst the committee sympathised with the object, it could not see its way clear, in face of local demands, to comply with the request.—

    The Half-holiday Association has decided on celebrating its fourth anniversary by a cricket match and a smoke concert tendered to the employers.

    The total value of prizes won at the recent Public Schools’ Athletic Association amounted to £40. Mr JJR Gibson, one of the members of the School Board, presented the prizes to the winners.

    The first meeting of the council after the annual election of aldermen took place on Monday. A letter was read from the Civilian. Rifle Club, handing over the rifle range and asking that the right to shoot thereon be vested in the military unit, the Mounted Rifles.

    The result of the local option vote showed that in West and South Wards no votes were recorded, while in East Ward one ratepayer voted.

    Aldermen Davis, Anderson, and Wilson were appointed finance committee; Aldermen Crothers, Ditzell, and Spicer, improvement committee; Aldermen Whittingham, Anderson, and Crothers, park committee; Aldermen Kantz, Whittingham, and Anderson, bylaws committee; Alderman Whittingham was elected treasurer. The salary of the clerk of works and council clerk was fixed at £156 per annum; inspector of nuisances, slaughter houses, etc, £50. The appointment of poundkeeper and maintenance men was deferred.

    The [Inverell] quarter sessions opened on Monday, before Judge Coffey.

    Two criminal cases were heard.

    Charles Pratt was charged with assaulting a girl named Martha Budden, at Bukkulta (eighteen miles from Inverell), she being under 14 years. After the evidence, his Honor summed up. He said the case disclosed a terrible state of affairs. The girl was totally devoid of educaton, and living not in a remote and sparcely populated portion of the colony, but in a district where there was every facility for education. There was evidently something wrong when such a state of affairs existed. The jury, found the prisoner guilty on the first count, and gave it as their opinion that the girl should be sent to a reformatory, and the rest of the children removed from the parents’ control. The prisoner was sentenced to five years’ penal servitude.

    In the case of a lad named [George] Davis, charged with bestiality, Dr Lane, Government medical officer, gave evidence that the accused was mentally weak. It was decided that he was not fit to stand his trial, and he was removed to his former custody.

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    For some weeks past the municipal elections have created no small amount of interest in both Singleton and South Singleton (writes our correspondent). In the borough council three aldermen retired, and although quite a number of candidates announced themselves for the vacancies, they all retired before nomination day, and the three retiring aldermen had a walk over. At the first meeting the Mayor (Alderman AC Robinson) was re-elected Mayor for the fourth time in succession. At South Singleton, however, a keen contest was experienced between five candidates for three vacancies, with the result that the voting was very close. The Mayor (Alderman Miner) has been re-elected Mayor for the third time in succession.

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    At present there are two relief societies in Singleton, and for some time past it has been felt that they overlapped each other in the work of collecting funds and distributing charity. Recently the committee of the Benevolent Asylum, recognising the futility of two kindred organisations working in a rather circumscribed sphere, propounded a scheme for amalgamation with the Singleton Relief Society, and, as the idea was looked upon with favor by the latter, a conference is to be held between representatives of the two societies to form a basis upon which to amalgamate their forces, so as to secure better results.—

    At the Church of England on Tuesday night last a special service was held, when all the ministers in the district attended, and special prayers for rain were offered.

    The imposition of the land tax has been a thorn in the side of many of the land owners of this district, and has been the cause of a considerable amount of unrest among the more wealthy holders. This feeling of discontent has been fanned into a blaze by the manner in which the assessments were made, and a meeting was held to protest against what the speakers called an outrageous tax. Several resolutions were passed, condemning this mode of taxation, and a committee was appointed to get up a petition to the Government protesting against the assessments.—

    The long defunct bicycle club has now been resuscitated, and a strong body of officers appointed to advise and control the club. The country around Singleton is well suited for cycling, as the roads are level, and are always in splendid condition, and as there are a great number of both lady and gentlemen cyclists in the district, the club promises to have good support. It is proposed that a sports meeting shall be held at an early date.—

    At the last meeting of the Northern Rifle Association it was decided to affiliate with the National Rifle Association, and that the association’s gold medal be added to the first prize in the champion aggregate. It was also decided to ask Major-General French to attend the annual meeting, to be held next month.—

    Very little interest is being manifested in federation here. The member for the district, the Hon AJ Gould, who is now in New Zealand, was asked by a few friends to become a candidate for the convention, but he cabled back that he could not accede to the request, as the Cabinet had decided that the Hons GH Reid, JN Brunker, and JH Carruthers were to be the only candidates from the Ministry.—

    The weather still remains very warm and dry. The grass is all burnt up, and fodder is scarce. Many stock owners are beginning to remove their cattle to places where grass is more plentiful. The Hunter River is at present very low, and many of the older inhabitants declare they never saw it so sluggish. Several of the main tributaries have dried up, and the Hunter itself is at many places only ankle deep.

 


1     Evening News, (Sydney, NSW), Mon 15 Feb 1897, p. 7. Emphasis added.