Explorations in Australia
Part 5 out of 5
Mr. William Gosse rose, and was received with loud cheers. He said he
felt honoured by being invited on the present occasion, and had much
pleasure in taking part in the reception of Mr. John Forrest and party.
He would take that opportunity of making a few remarks. His instructions,
when he was sent out, were to find a route as nearly as possible in a
direct line from his starting-point upon the telegraph line to Perth,
only deviating when obliged to do so for water. He had to feel his way as
he advanced, form depots to secure his retreat if necessary, and
accurately fix all points on his track. The last words the Honourable T.
Reynolds had said to him were, "You fully understand that Perth is your
destination, and not any other point on the western coast," or words to
that effect. They would see by that, that had he been fortunate enough to
discover the country by which Mr. Forrest got across, he should scarcely
have been justified in proceeding. His farthest point west was between
500 and 600 miles from the explored portion of the Murchison, and 360
miles from the sources of the same. Copies of his diary and map had been
forwarded to Mr. Forrest by Mr. Goyder on the 27th of February, 1874, the
originals of which had been ready for publication on his arrival on the
telegraph line, and had not been compiled after their return to Adelaide,
as some people supposed from the delay in their publication. He made
these statements partly in self-defence, as remarks had been made by
members in the House to the effect that the Government had fitted out an
expedition at an enormous expense which had done comparatively nothing,
though his map showed 50,000 square miles of country.
Sir John Morphett had been asked to propose the toast of The Australian
Colonies. It was a very large toast indeed at the present time even, and
what it might be in the future it was impossible to say. He hoped that it
would be something wonderful. (Cheers.) At the present time the immense
country was occupied by 2,000,000 people, and we could not with that
number get on. What we wanted was more population. What were the products
which Australia could produce? First of all was wheat--the best in the
world. Then there were wine and wool, and lead, and gold, and copper,
tin, and sugar. These were all products that the world wanted, and all
that we required to make our production of these a success was
federation. We should have greater individual strength and prosperity,
and greater universal strength and prosperity if we were federated, and
we would in time become what we wanted to be--a nation. (Cheers.) Let
them come to West Australia, which was the birth-place of their esteemed
and energetic friend Mr. Forrest. He was glad to see that she had at last
freed herself from the shackles of that curse of convictism, and could
now go hand in hand with the other colonies in the march of progress. He
gave them the toast of the Colonies of Australia, coupling with it the
name of Mr. Ernest Giles.
The toast having been duly honoured, Mr. Ernest Giles rose to respond,
and was met with cheers. He had been called upon to respond to this
toast, which, as Sir John Morphett had told them, was a very
comprehensive one--so comprehensive that he was sure that he would fail
to do it justice. What he had to say therefore on the subject would not
detain them long. Sir John Morphett had touched upon the progress and
prosperity of the colonies, and there was no doubt that at the present
time the colonies were in a far more prosperous state than they had ever
been in before. With regard to federation, a gentleman high in the
service here, speaking to him, had said that if that was carried out
exploration should not be forgotten, but that fresh lines should be taken
with the co-operation of all the colonies. The splendid success which had
attended Mr. Forrest would, he had no doubt, tend greatly to promote the
ultimate prosperity of the colonies. (Applause.)
Mr. John Forrest, in a few complimentary words, proposed the health of
the Chairman, which was well received and acknowledged.
VISIT TO GAWLER AND MELBOURNE.
A few days afterwards I was honoured by an invitation from Gawler to lay
the first stone of a monument to commemorate the achievements of the late
Mr. John McKinlay, the leader of the Burke Relief Expedition, and the
explorer, under great difficulties, of the northern territory. Mr.
McKinlay died at Gawler in December, 1874, and it was resolved to
perpetuate his memory by the erection of an obelisk in the cemetery. The
14th of November was the day appointed for the ceremony, and after I had
laid the stone with the customary forms, there was a luncheon, presided
over by Mr. W.F. Wincey, the Mayor of Gawler. He delivered a really
eloquent address, describing the character and heroic labours of the
distinguished explorer, whose achievements we were celebrating. My own
health and that of my brother was proposed, and in responding (my brother
not being present) I once more took occasion to express the deep sense,
on the part of all my associates, of the kindness with which we had been
After this my brother and I paid a flying visit to Melbourne, where we
remained a few days, and received much attention from the Governor, Sir
George Bowen, the Mayor of Melbourne, and others; and then, on the 5th of
December, we bade farewell to our South Australian friends and started on
our homeward voyage. On the 10th we reached King George's Sound, where we
were heartily welcomed and presented with a congratulatory address. At
Banbury and Fremantle we were received with kindness and enthusiastic
demonstrations. At Banbury we met Mr. Weld. He was on his way to King
George's Sound, en route for his new Government in Tasmania. He welcomed
us very heartily, and expressed his regret that he was unable to receive
us at Perth. The popular air, When Johnny comes marching home again, was
selected as extremely appropriate to the occasion, and after a champagne
breakfast at the residence of the Chairman of the Municipal Council, Mr.
Marmion, at Fremantle, we left for Perth in a carriage and six, Tommy
Windich and Tommy Pierre riding on gaily-decked horses immediately behind
On reaching Perth we were met by the Commandant, Colonel Harvest, the
chairman and members of the Reception Committee, and representatives of
the Friendly Societies. The streets were crowded, and on our way to the
Town Hall we were enthusiastically cheered. Mr. Randell, the Chairman of
the Perth Municipality, read an address of welcome. I need not repeat
what I said in reply; my words were but the expression of what has been
felt ever since our perilous journey was completed--thankfulness that I
had been preserved and strengthened to do my duty, and that I had been so
well supported by brave and faithful companions. But I will quote the
characteristic speech of Tommy Pierre, who returned thanks on behalf of
the party--Windich was called on, but could not summon courage to say a
word. Tommy said, "Well, gentlemen, I am very thankful to come back to
Swan River, and Banbury, Fremantle, and Perth. I thought we was never to
get back. (Laughter.) Many a time I go into camp in the morning, going
through desert place, and swear and curse and say, 'Master, where the
deuce are you going to take us?' I say to him, 'I'll give you a pound to
take us back.' (Cheers and laughter.) Master say, 'Hush! what are you
talking about? I will take you all right through to Adelaide;' and I
always obey him. Gentlemen, I am thankful to you that I am in the Town
Hall. That's all I got to say." (Cheers.)
No doubt we all shared Tommy's thankfulness, and I am sure his homely
language very fairly expressed the spirit in which all my associates had
shown their confidence in me during our long journey.
A banquet and ball were given in the Town Hall. Mr. Randell presided at
the former, supported by the Bishop of Perth; Sir Archibald P. Burt, the
Chief Justice; the Honourable the Commandant; Mr. L.S. Leake, Speaker of
the Legislative Council; the Honourable A. O'Grady Lefroy, Colonial
Treasurer, and other gentlemen of high position. The newspapers published
the following report of the principal speeches delivered:--
The Chairman gave His Excellency the Governor, whose unavoidable absence
he, in common with every one present, deeply regretted, knowing full well
the deep interest his Excellency had always evinced in connexion with
exploration, and especially in connexion with the expedition so
successfully carried through by their guests that evening.
The toast was drunk amid loud cheering.
The Chairman next gave The Army, Navy, and Volunteers, which was duly
The Honourable the Commandant, in responding for the Army and the Navy,
heartily thanked the assembly for the loyal manner in which the toast had
been received. The toast of the British Army and Navy, always appropriate
at a banquet where Britons were assembled, was particularly appropriate
on the present occasion, gathered together as they were to do honour to
valour. (Cheers.) It was needless for him to state that--all knew
it--British soldiers, well equipped, properly provided in every way, and
properly led, would go anywhere, and face any mortal thing; and so, it
appeared, would West Australians, true sons of Great Britain. The other
day, at the presentation of the address given to Mr. Forrest by the
citizens of Perth, he (the Commandant), alluding to the young explorer's
gallant and truly heroic services in the field of exploration, had said
that, were he a soldier, the distinguished feat he had accomplished would
have entitled him to be decorated with the soldier's most honourable mark
of distinction--the Victoria Cross. (Cheers.) Now he had no desire to
accord Mr. Forrest the least particle of credit beyond what he honestly
believed he was entitled to, but he meant to say this--that Mr. Forrest
had displayed all the noblest characteristics of a British soldier under
circumstances by no means as favourable for arousing a spirit of
intrepidity, and for stimulating bravery, as was in operation on a
battle-field, amidst the all-powerful excitement of an engagement with
the enemy, urged on to deeds of valour by the examples of comrades. Who
or what had Mr. Forrest and his little band of followers to cheer them
on; to urge them forward on their perilous and dreary enterprise? What
surrounding circumstances encouraged them to face unknown dangers? He
should think that many a wearisome day and night in crossing the arid,
trackless desert-path he was traversing, he would, on laying down his
head to rest, say, "Would for bedtime in Perth, and all well!" Nothing
daunted, however, by perils, privations, and difficulties, he carried his
enterprise successfully through; and although there were no Victoria
Crosses for distinguished services of that nature, there, nevertheless,
was an order of merit for rewarding exploits such as Mr. Forrest had
performed, and he most heartily and sincerely trusted that the decoration
of honour conferred upon the gallant Warburton would be likewise
conferred on Mr. Forrest. (Applause.)
Captain Birch briefly responded on behalf of the Volunteers.
The Chairman then said the pleasing duty devolved upon him to propose the
toast which was in reality the toast of the evening, and to ask them to
drink with him The Health and Prosperity of Mr. John Forrest and his
Party. (Cheers.) Nine months ago, within a day, they had undertaken a
perilous journey across an unknown country, to accomplish what was
believed by many to be an impossible task on account of the terrible
nature of that country. What dangers, what difficulties, what privations
they had suffered in carrying out their daring enterprise, and what the
result of their arduous labours had been, was already known to most if
not all of those now present, a succinct chronicle of their journey
having been published in the South Australian and in the local
newspapers. To-night they were amongst them safe and sound, having been
saved by Almighty Providence from dangers which they could not have
contended with, and surmounted difficulties which but for such Divine
help must have been insuperable. All honour to them; all honour to the
brave men who had assisted to achieve such a victory, of which even Mr.
Forrest and his companions might well be proud, and the advantages of
which he felt that we could not yet fully appreciate. (Cheers.) The
Honourable the Commandant had spoken so ably of their victory that little
remained for him to add. He, however, ventured to differ from the gallant
Commandant on one point, namely, that, when compassed on all sides by
difficulties, far from aid, succour, or assistance of any kind, Mr.
Forrest must have wished himself back in Perth, all well. He (Mr.
Randell) did not believe that such a thought ever entered Mr. Forrest's
head, fully determined as he was to cross the continent, or perish in the
attempt. He was sure that not even the golden reward offered by Tommy
Pierre, for turning back, exerted any influence on his gallant leader's
mind; on the contrary, they found him quietly rebuking Tommy's failing
courage with a "hush" and a promise to take him right through to
Adelaide. Mr. Forrest's courage never failed him on the way, nor had they
any reason to believe that the courage of any member of his party had
really failed in the face of the terrible difficulties they had
encountered, and, by God's help, surmounted. (Applause.) They all had
read of the Olympic games of the ancient Greeks, and the kindred sports
indulged in by the Romans of old. Their athletic contests being conducted
in the presence of immense crowds of spectators naturally stimulated the
athletes to distinguish themselves; the applause of their fellow-citizens
urged them on to strive with might and main to win the crown of laurel or
ivy leaves with which the brow of the victor was decked. He well
remembered an incident recorded in Grecian history, where two brothers
had been engaged in an athletic contest and been victorious. When they
came forth to receive the crown which rewarded their victory, their aged
father--who himself, in his younger days, had been an athlete--was
present, and the sons placed their crown on his venerable head. He was
sorry that the father of the young heroes whom they were then
entertaining was not present to witness the reward freely bestowed upon
his sons by their fellow-countrymen. (Cheers.) Our South Australian
neighbours, in their magnificent reception of Mr. Forrest and his party,
had given us a good example of how to appreciate and reward noble deeds,
and it must be pleasing to every Western Australian to reflect on the
cordiality of that reception. (Applause.) He thought the colony would be
neglecting its duty if it did not, as one man, recognize the extreme
kindness which had been shown our gallant explorers by the people and by
the Government of our sister colony--South Australia. (Cheers.) It was a
pleasing trait in Mr. Forrest's character that he had not been at all
spoilt by the enthusiastic and really splendid ovation he and his party
had received at the hands of our southern neighbours; nothing could be
more admirable than his unaffected modesty and unassuming deportment in
the face of such a reception. The life of a lion did not spoil their
young hero, nor, as the Inquirer had said that morning, did he think it
would suit him long; for however tempting it might be to some people to
live upon laurels well earned, such men as Mr. Forrest had no difficulty
in overcoming the temptation to ease and repose, however deserving and
indisputable his claims thereto. (Cheers.) He believed with the Inquirer
that it was Mr. Forrest's natural instinct to lead a hard life in the
cause of exploration. He belonged--not by birth it was true, but through
his parents--to a country that had produced such men as Mungo Park;
Bruce, who explored the sources of the Nile; and Campbell, who, labouring
in the same cause, traversed the wilds of Africa; and that greatest and
noblest of all explorers, the dead but immortal Livingstone. (Cheers.)
Mr. Forrest's achievements had entitled his name to stand side by side in
the page of history with men of that stamp and others who had placed the
human family under such great obligations by their undaunted and
self-denying efforts in the cause of exploration. (Cheers.) It would not
perhaps be right on his part to refer to the pecuniary reward which the
Legislature had voted as an honorarium to Mr. Forrest and his party, but
he would say this much--and he believed every one in the colony would be
in accord with him--that the public would not have grumbled, on the
contrary, would have been glad if the grant had been 1000 pounds and not
500 pounds. (Hear, hear.) He did not think for a moment that the
Legislative Council thought that 500 pounds was the measure of the value
of Mr. Forrest's services; they were rather influenced by the extent of
the public revenue and the ability of the country to pay a larger amount;
nevertheless, he would have been pleased, and the public would have been
pleased, had the vote been more commensurate with the value of those
services. (Cheers.) In asking the present assembly to join him in
drinking the toast of Mr. Forrest's health and that of his party, he
considered it was as if he moved a vote of thanks on behalf of the colony
for the labours in which they had been associated, for the honour they
had conferred on their country, and he would ask them to join him in
heartily drinking the toast. (Cheers.)
The toast was received with several rounds of cheering.
The Commandant rose in explanation, and said he never for a moment meant
to infer that in the midst of his greatest difficulties Mr. Forrest ever
thought of giving up his task. What he said was that he must have often,
in lying down his head after a wearisome day's journey, wished himself at
home in Perth all well, with his enterprise accomplished, but not
otherwise (cheers). He did not believe that Mr. Forrest ever winced at
danger, ever swerved from the path he had laid out for himself to
Mr. John Forrest, on rising, was received with applause, which rose to
ringing cheers. Upon the subsiding of the applause, Mr. Forrest said,
"Mr. Chairman and gentlemen, I feel that I ought to say a great deal on
this occasion, but I really hardly know what to say. I can, of course,
say that I sincerely thank you for your kindness in inviting myself and
companions to this great banquet, and when I say that, I trust you will
give me credit for saying what I feel in my heart of hearts. But I feel I
have much more than this to say this evening, knowing as I do that I
would disappoint you if I did not address you at some length. I will
endeavour to muster the words and the courage to do so; as you know,
public speaking is not my forte, and if I fail in satisfying your
expectations, you must accept the will for the deed (cheers). When I had
the honour of being entertained at a public banquet at Adelaide, I had a
good deal to say there of my career up to the present; but here I need
not say a word about my antecedents, for most of you have known me from
my childhood (cheers). For the last few years you all know I have had
some little to do with exploration, and for me to tell you anything of my
past experience would be simply waste of time and waste of words. You
will, however, expect me to say something of our latest enterprise. I had
been for some time animated by a desire to explore the untrodden interior
of our island continent. I had, as you know, been twice before in the
field; once in an eastward direction, and once along the south sea-board
to Adelaide--the latter, I was told, being considered a very small
undertaking, quite a coasting trip, and one on account of which we could
not lay claim to much credit. I therefore was desirous of penetrating the
mystery that shrouded the interior, and, with that object in view, I used
my utmost endeavours to organize an expedition in that direction. Without
the support and co-operation of one who I am sorry not to see here this
evening, he having quitted the metropolis--his Excellency Governor
Weld--my endeavours, I may safely say, would not have resulted in the
organization of the expedition I had at heart, and I should not have been
here to-night, occupying the proud position which I do. (Cheers.) My
proposition to his Excellency, through the Commissioner of Crown Lands,
was warmly received, and cordially espoused by the Executive. Any one can
see it on application, together with his Excellency's minute, which was
very complimentary to me. The proposition was carried through the
Legislative Council, and a small sum of money was voted for the
expedition, without which it could not probably have been organized and
fitted out. I am happy to say that our trip is not likely to cost much
more than the amount voted (400 pounds). Possibly the expense may reach
600 pounds or so; if it does, I have no doubt the Legislature will
willingly vote the extra amount. (Hear, hear.) If it does not, of course
we keep to the original proposition, and we shall only ask for the 400
pounds. I am quite prepared to abide by the original arrangement; but I
think that every man in the colony is satisfied that the expedition was
conducted at the least possible expense, and that we all tried to do our
very best. (Cheers.) I scarcely think it is necessary for me to enter
into any details of our journey; I have already given the most salient
points in my published telegraphic despatch to the Government. We
experienced some difficulties, no doubt, and some few privations, but I
can assure you none of us ever thought of turning back. (Cheers.) On one
occasion, I admit, the thought did enter my head that, possibly, we might
have to turn back, but I did not tell any member of the party a word
about it. The thought haunted me at night, and I could not sleep; and had
we to carry it into execution we should have probably found ourselves
coming out somewhere near Victoria Plains, and it struck me that I should
be greeted with such expressions as "Well, old man, I am glad to see you
back, but I am sorry you could not get through." I knew people would be
glad to see us back, but their satisfaction at our safe return would be
alloyed with regret at our failure to get right across; so I said to
myself, "I never can face that; I must try again," and try again we did,
and you know the result. (Cheers.) I candidly tell you that the thought
struck me that if we were baffled in our efforts to penetrate through, it
might be all the better for this colony, inasmuch as there would be a
saving of expense thereby, although the credit due to me would be
considerably diminished. But I did not care so much for that. When,
however, I reached the settled portions of South Australia, I was very
anxious to get right through to the telegraph line, just to show our
neighbours that we could get across. From the date of our arrival at
Peake Station, you know how cordially we were received throughout the
rest of our journey, and with what kindness we were treated. Probably all
of you have read of our enthusiastic reception at Adelaide. I never saw
so many people in my life before, nor such a demonstration. They say
there were 20,000 persons present. I thought there were 100,000 present.
(Laughter.) As for my brother, he seemed enchanted with the sight, and
especially with the ladies. He has said he thought they were all looking
at him. On the contrary, gentlemen, I thought they were all looking at
me. (Laughter.) Every one we came in contact with, both high and low,
treated us most kindly. The same again in Melbourne. (Cheers.) Now, I
must say a word or two about my first impressions on visiting Melbourne.
The first object of interest that caught my attention was the splendid
monument erected to the memory of the gallant explorers, Burke and Wills.
Baron von Mueller kindly met me on the jetty when we landed, and I
accompanied him in a cab to have an interview with the Governor. When we
came in sight of this monument I asked the Baron to stop while I alighted
to inspect it. He courteously did so. Gentlemen, a thrilling feeling came
over me on looking on that memorial of two brave men who sacrificed their
lives in the cause of exploration. The monument represents poor Burke
standing over Wills, who is kneeling down. The first relief represents
the party leaving Melbourne, and the popular demonstration accorded them;
in the next place the return from Carpentaria is depicted, and the
discovery of a depot where some provisions had been deposited. There is
King in the act of holding a candle, Burke reading a letter, and Wills's
head is peering over his shoulder. Further on there is a relief
representing the death of the brave leader with his revolver grasped in
his hand. On the other side there is Howitt and his party finding King,
the sole survivor of Burke's party, among a number of black fellows, with
whom he had been living for several weeks--the black fellows looking
aghast at the relief party. Several times afterwards, during my stay in
Melbourne, I went to look at this monument, and it always sent a thrill
through my very soul. (Cheers.) Gentlemen, in conclusion, I must again
express my gratitude for the kind manner in which you have received me
and the members of my party back amongst you. My only consolation, in the
face of the ovations I have received, is that we all tried to do our very
best. (Cheers.) As to the vote of the Legislature, alluded to by your
chairman, while I thank him heartily for his liberal spirit, I assure you
I am very well satisfied indeed. (Applause.) When I started on the
expedition I never expected one farthing of honorarium from the public
funds; but though I am modest I am not altogether unselfish, and I did
expect what I think every Briton expects from his countrymen when he does
his best--but what he does not always get--the thanks of my
fellow-colonists. (Cheers.) That I HAVE received most abundantly, and I
am quite satisfied with it, and so I think are all the members of my
party. We are also quite content with, and thankful for, the provision
made for us by the Legislative Council. I don't know whether I shall
again appear before you as an explorer, or whether I shall rest on my
laurels, as the Inquirer said to-day. I can only say that if my services
are required I shall be found ready and willing. (Cheers.) In the toast
you have so enthusiastically drank my companions are very properly
associated with myself, for I am much indebted to them for their hearty
co-operation. They always endeavoured to do what I desired, and the most
friendly feelings existed amongst us throughout the journey. (Cheers.) I
never withheld from them any information as to our whereabouts or our
movements; the maps, route, and the observations taken during the
expedition were always open for their inspection, so that they could see
our exact position from day to day. I had no secrets from them (hear,
hear), and this confidence was reciprocated on their part. I never had
occasion to check or to use an angry word to one of my party. They one
and all always showed readiness and willingness to obey my
instructions--in fact, I seldom had any occasion to instruct them; and I
gladly avail myself of this opportunity to thank them publicly for their
exemplary conduct. (Cheers.) On their behalf, as well as on my own
behalf, I once more also thank you most sincerely for the honour you have
done us and the kindness you have shown us. I hope that our future career
will show that we are not altogether unworthy of that kindness." (Loud
Tommy Pierre, one of the aboriginals attached to the expedition, then
stepped forward, and, addressing the assembly, said: I only black fellow,
you know; nothing at all but just a few words. I ought to give you good
lecture. (Laughter.) Well, gentlemen, I am very thankful that I got into
the city of Perth; that people give me welcome and everything. I am
always thankful to any person that brought me into city of Perth.
(Laughter.) When I speak so of city of Perth I don't speak wrong at all,
what I speak is true and true. Well, gentlemen, I am very thankful to the
people in Perth at the Town Hall; I am very thankful to every one that
welcome me. I am always very glad to see white fellows around me. In
Bunbury, Governor Weld spoke to me and say he left me a present in city
of Perth, and I hope I will get it too. (Cheers and laughter.) Governor
Weld is a splendid fellow; splendid governor. Well, gentlemen, I am all
thankful; my last word is--I am thankful to you all. (Cheers.)
Mr. Randell: In consequence of the absence of the Surveyor-General--from
what cause I am unable to state--his lordship Bishop Hale has kindly
consented to propose the next toast. (Cheers.)
His Lordship, on rising, was received most cordially. He said that the
toast which had just been entrusted to him was one that would have been
better proposed by the Surveyor-General. The sentiment was Australian
Exploration. It so happened that ever since he had arrived in Australia
he had been very much interested in exploration, and much mixed up with
persons engaged in that work. He had known the veteran explorer Sturt,
the discoverer of South Australia; and he had also been acquainted with
his brave companion, John McDouall Stuart, who had marked out the route
subsequently followed by the trans-continental telegraph line from
Adelaide to Port Darwin, for, wonderful to say, no better route could
afterwards be discovered; the map of Stuart's journey and the map of the
telegraph line were almost identical. With regard to Mr. Forrest's
exploratory labours, referred to with unaffected and characteristic
modesty by the young explorer himself, his lordship believed that great
and practical results would follow, and that, even as Stuart's track from
south to north of the continent had become the line of communication
between those two extreme points, so would the path traversed by Mr.
Forrest become, some day or other, the line of communication through the
central portion of the continent from West to South Australia. (Cheers.)
With respect to the necessity for exploration, no doubt it was a very
essential work to be carried out. Whenever he had gone to distant and
sequestered parts of the colony in the exercise of his ecclesiastical
functions, and was called upon to console people so situated as to be cut
off from the blessings of regular ministration, he was in the habit of
saying to them, "Although you are at present cut off, yet you may believe
that God in His providence has designed that His world shall be
inhabited, and ordained that pioneers shall go forth into desert places
in order to accomplish that end." Explorers, therefore, like Mr. Forrest,
might well feel that in devoting themselves to the work of exploration
they were doing their duty to God and to their country in seeking to
discover new fields, likely to be of practical use as new settlements for
the ever-increasing human family. Their efforts in that direction, often
purchased with much suffering and privation, entitled explorers to be
classed in the front rank of benefactors to mankind. (Applause.) The
population of the world was continuously increasing, and new settlements
became a necessity. In London alone it was said there was a birth every
five minutes. What, then, must be the population of the British empire if
the increase in one city was at that rate? It was but due to Mr. Forrest
and to all such explorers that they should receive the thanks of their
fellow-men for devoting their lives to so desirable a work as the
discovery of new country, fitted for the habitation of civilized men.
(Applause.) He would not trespass any further on the patience of the
assembly: he was present in order to join in that general feeling of
admiration which Mr. Forrest's exploit had evoked. Cooler courage and
greater heroism could not be displayed under any circumstances than were
displayed by his young friend on his right, circumstanced as he had been
on divers occasions during his journey, with his life and the lives of
his brave companions frequently in imminent peril. (Cheers.) Mr. Forrest
had just told them that he did not think it necessary to enter into the
details of that journey, inasmuch as the most important particulars
connected therewith had already appeared in his telegraphic despatch to
the Government, published in the local newspapers. That telegram was
certainly one of the most explicit and distinct records of the kind that
his lordship had ever perused. He had paid but a moderate degree of
attention to it, but had experienced no difficulty whatever in pricking
out Mr. Forrest's track on a map, and in forming a distinct conception of
his journey. (Cheers.) It only remained for his lordship to ask them to
join him in drinking the sentiment of Australian Exploration, and at the
same time to drink the health of Mr. Alexander Forrest, whose name was
coupled with it. (Cheers.)
The toast was enthusiastically honoured, the band playing The Song of
Mr. A. Forrest, on rising, was received with applause. He was
indistinctly heard at the reporter's table, owing to the distance which
separated him from it, and the constant hum of conversation, which by
this time was becoming general. He was understood to express the proud
satisfaction he felt at being present that evening, and more especially
as his name had been associated with the toast of Australian Exploration.
The sentiment was a wide one, and they need not suppose that he was going
to enter into the history of all Australian explorations that had taken
place. He was sure that time would not admit of his making even cursory
remarks upon these events. Mr. Forrest then alluded to the exploratory
labours of Stuart--perhaps the greatest of Australian explorers--of
McKinlay, of Burke and Wills, of Captain Roe, and the Gregorys, and of
the veteran Warburton. The hospitality shown by this colony to the
last-named gallant explorer had produced a lasting feeling of gratitude
throughout South Australia. The manner in which our southern neighbours
spoke of the kind treatment extended by the inhabitants of this colony to
that aged explorer, from the day he reached our north-west settlements to
the hour he embarked on board steamer for Adelaide, reflected honourably
upon the hospitable nature of West Australian people. Mr. Elder, one of
the enterprising gentlemen at whose expense the expedition was organized
and equipped, had told him (Mr. Forrest) that he never heard of such
kindness. The South Australians, however, were not long before an
opportunity was afforded them of returning that hospitality, and they
certainly had not neglected the opportunity. Than the treatment which the
party to which he had the honour of belonging had received at the hands
of the people of South Australia nothing could be kinder--nothing could
possibly be more hospitable. Every house was thrown open to them; their
horses were fed free of charge; it did not cost them a single penny in
travelling; everywhere they were met with the most cordial reception.
Their triumphal entry into Adelaide was a demonstration worthy of a
prince. (Cheers.) Having thanked his fellow-colonists for the very hearty
reception accorded them on their return, Mr. Forrest spoke in very
complimentary terms of the other members of the expedition. The two
natives were first-rate fellows, and, as for Sweeney and Kennedy, he
would never wish to have better companions in the bush. They were always
for going ahead; no thought of turning back ever entered their heads; in
their greatest privations not a murmur escaped their lips. (Loud cheers.)
Mr. L.S. Leake said: "The toast I have to propose is South Australia and
the Sister Colonies--a sentiment which I think might most appropriately
have immediately followed on the speech of my noble friend, Mr. John
Forrest, who by his remarks paved the way to the few words I have to say.
Why South Australia should be placed before the other colonies on this
occasion it is not difficult to conjecture. She has, above all others,
gained our affection by her kind and hospitable treatment of our
fellow-colonists, our respected guests this evening who were received in
Adelaide with even greater honour than the son of our beloved Queen.
(Cheers.) With reference to Mr. Forrest himself, Western Australia should
be proud of having produced such a man; and I only wish I had arrived in
the colony four years and a half earlier, so that I might lay claim to
having been born here. Many of those around me are natives of Western
Australia; and although I am proud of Old England, my native country, I
should have been glad to boast of having been born in the same colony as
John Forrest. All of his fellow-colonists should be proud that Mr.
Forrest has accomplished a feat which the whole civilized world must
admire. (Cheers.) I did think that the Surveyor-General would have
considered it worthy of his coming here to-night to join us in doing
honour to Mr. Forrest, and that he would have introduced you to a
gentleman connected with the Government of Victoria, now in this
colony--Mr. Wardell, the Inspector-General of Public Works, for whose
services we are under deep obligation. I believe him to be an excellent
engineer, and in examining our harbour at Fremantle he will be the right
man in the right place. Had he, however, been in his right place
to-night, he would have been here amongst us, introduced by the
Surveyor-General, and we should thus have an opportunity of publicly
thanking the Victorian Government for granting us the benefit of his
services. (Hear, hear.) But, though Victoria is not represented at this
festive gathering, South Australia is, and that by a gentleman whose name
it affords me great pleasure to connect with the toast which has been
entrusted to me. This colony was established in the year 1829, and in
1830 there arrived amongst us one of our pioneer settlers, a good,
worthy, honest--I cannot say English, but Scotch--gentleman, Mr. Walter
Boyd Andrews, than whom a more upright man never landed on our shores. He
is represented here to night by his eldest son, with whom I spent the
greater portion of my younger days, and who for the last ten years has
been Registrar-General of the colony of South Australia. I have,
therefore, much pleasure in associating his name with the toast which I
now ask you to join me in drinking, Prosperity to South Australia and the
Sister Colonies." (Cheers.)
The toast was drunk with loud cheering, the band playing Pull, pull
Mr. Andrews, in response, said: "Mr. Chairman and gentlemen, I rise at
once to return thanks, because I always fancy that words spoken on the
spur of the moment come from the very heart. I will first of all dispose
of myself, having been taken completely by surprise in finding my name
associated with the sentiment proposed by my old friend, Mr. Leake. I
thank you most heartily for the honour you have done me, and the kind
manner in which you have responded to the toast. As regards South
Australia and the Sister Colonies, you have done South Australia the
proud honour of giving her precedence over her sisters of the group,
thereby showing, as Mr. Leake has said, the warmth of your affection
towards her, which kindly feeling, I sincerely believe, is reciprocated
on her part. The cordial reception accorded to your gallant explorers is
an earnest of that feeling, and I think I may venture to say that the
colony which I have the honour to serve will at all times extend a hearty
welcome to any West Australian colonist. There is, I assure you, a very
affectionate feeling entertained by South Australians towards this
colony--a feeling that has been in existence for a long time, and which
is growing deeper and deeper every day. She is not only willing to extend
the right hand of friendship to you, but, as you know, has expressed her
readiness to meet you half way across the desert that separates you from
each other by means of the telegraph. (Cheers.) She does not feel jealous
that you should receive telegraphic intelligence from the outside world
earlier than she does; on the contrary, she is anxious that you should be
placed in the same advantageous position as regards telegraphic
communication as your other sisters are. (Applause.) Gentlemen, on her
behalf, and on my own behalf, I thank you most heartily for the kind
manner in which this toast has been received."
RESULTS OF THE EXPLORATIONS.
Since then, in the summer of 1875, I have visited Europe and received
many proofs of the interest felt by Englishmen in Australian exploration.
In the colonies, too, I find that the spirit of adventure which
stimulates settlers to follow eagerly in the steps of the pioneer has
been active. Already stations are being advanced on each side along the
shores of the Great Bight, and a telegraph line is being constructed from
King George's Sound to Adelaide, along my route of 1870, which will
connect Western Australia with the telegraph systems of the world.
Farther north, towards the head waters of the Murchison, advances have
been made, and I and other explorers must feel a gratification, which
gives ample reward for all our toil, in knowing that we have made some
advance at least towards a more complete knowledge of the interior of
vast and wonderful Australia.
APPENDIX TO JOURNAL.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PLANTS, ETC., COLLECTED ON EXPEDITION;
SHOWING ALSO THE LOCALITY FROM WHICH THEY WERE TAKEN:
BY BARON VON MUELLER, C.M.G., ETC.
Latitude 25 degrees 57 minutes 32 seconds South; longitude 117 degrees 20
Cassia desolata. Trichodesma Zeilonicum. Stylobasium spatulatum. Psoralea
Cucantha. Scaevola spiniscens. Sida petrophila. Codonocarpus
cotinifolius. Adriana tomentosa. Salsola Kali.
Latitude 26 degrees 8 minutes 31 seconds South; longitude 119 degrees 18
Acacia aneura. Oeschynomene Indica. Eremophila longifola. Cassia Sturtii.
Latitude 26 degrees 13 minutes South; longitude 119 degrees 32 minutes
Santalum Preissianum. Plectronia latifolia.
Latitude 26 degrees 17 minutes 12 seconds South; longitude 119 degrees 53
Brachychiton Gregorii. Dodonaea petiolaris. Cassia artemisioides.
Eremophila latifolia. Hakea lorea. Acacia aneura. Eremophila longifolia.
Latitude 25 degrees 38 minutes 44 seconds South; longitude 120 degrees 38
Cassia eremophila. Eremophila longifolia.
Latitude 25 degrees 0 minutes 46 seconds South; longitude 121 degrees 22
Stemodia viscosa. Eremophila longifolia. Sida petrophila. Adriana
tomentosa. Convolvulus erubescens. Cassia Sturtii. Hakea lorea.
Latitude 25 degrees 22 minutes 50 seconds South; longitude 121 degrees 57
Acacia aneura. Eremophila longifolia. Cassia eremophila. Cassia desolata.
Eremophila Brownii. Loranthus Exocarpi.
Latitude 25 degrees 41 minutes 23 seconds South; longitude 122 degrees 53
Pappophorum commune. Cassia eremophila. Acacia salicina. Santalum
lanceolatum. Senecio lantus. Eremophila Duttoni. Ptilotus alopecuroides.
Brunonia Australis. Hakea lorea. Cassia eremophila. Eremophila
Latitude 25 degrees 43 minutes 8 seconds South; longitude 124 degrees 10
Cassia notabilis. Cassia artemisioides.
Latitude 25 degrees 53 minutes 23 seconds South; longitude 124 degrees 31
Eremophila Latrobei. Dodonaea petiolaris.
Latitude 26 degrees 5 minutes 10 seconds South; longitude 124 degrees 46
Crotalaria Cunninghami. Indigofera brevidens. Sida petrophila. Acacia
salicina. Dodonaea petriolaris. Condonocarpus cotinifolius. Cassia
Sturtii. Cassia artemisioides. Kochia Brownii. Eremophila longifolia.
Latitude 25 degrees 54 minutes 53 seconds South; longitude 126 degrees 48
Hakea lorea. Cassia desolata. Eremophila longifolia. Abutilon Fraseri.
Acacia salicina. Cassia platypoda. Ficus platypoda (the native fig).
Latitude 26 degrees 1 minute South; longitude 127 degrees 7 minutes East.
Crotolaria Cunninghami. Indigofera brevidens. Cassia Eremophila.
Trichodesma Zeilanicum. Cassia artemisioides.
Latitude 26 degrees 2 minutes South; longitude 127 degrees 22 minutes
Abutilon Fraseri. Trichodesma Zeilanicum. Acacia salicina.
Latitude 26 degrees 15 minutes 10 seconds South; longitude 122 degrees 9
Gossypium Sturtii. Hibiscus Farragei. Pterocaulon Sphacelatus. Salsola
Kali. Condonocarpus cotinifolius. Heliotropium undulatum. Scaevola
spiniscens. Stylobasium spatulatum. Adriana tomentosa. Tecoma Australis.
Ficus platypoda. Trichodesma Zeilanicum. Sida virgata. Dodonaea viscosa.
Helichrysum apiculatum. Jasminum lineare. Adriana tomentosa. Indigofera
Australis. Petalostylis labicheoides. Scaevola Aemula. Pterocaulon
Sphacelatus. Santalum Preissianum. Festuca (Triodia) irritans.
The Santalum Preissianum, the so-called native peach, with edible fruit,
is found generally on the whole route.
The Spinifex so often mentioned is the Festuca (Triodia) irritans, the
Spinifex of the Desert Explorers, but not of Science.
Latitude 25 degrees 46 minutes South; longitude 118 degrees East:--
Marsdenia Leichardti, the climber with edible pods and milky sap, the
seeds with a downy top, called by the natives Carcular.
Latitude 26 degrees 4 minutes South; longitude 129 degrees 50 minutes
The Casuarina Decaisneana, the Shea-oak or Desert Oak peculiar to Central
REPORT FROM R. BROUGH SMYTH, ESQUIRE,
SECRETARY FOR MINES OF VICTORIA,
ON THE GEOLOGICAL SPECIMENS COLLECTED ON THE EXPEDITION.
COLUMN 1: POSITION OF LOCALITY WHERE THE SPECIMEN WAS COLLECTED.
COLUMN 2: REMARKS BY MR. JOHN FORREST ON THE SPECIMENS FORWARDED.
COLUMN 3: MR. R. BROUGH SMYTH'S REPORT ON SPECIMENS.
Latitude 26 degrees South, Longitude 117 degrees 20 minutes East : Taken
from Mount Hale on the Murchison River. This formation extends to
longitude 120 degrees East, and is very magnetic, also very heavy. There
must be a great deal of iron in it. The hills are very high, and the echo
very remarkable. I have seen the same kinds of hills in latitude 29
degrees, longitude 120 degrees. Bare granite rocks sometimes in the
vicinity, though not attached. (May 4th.) : Two small specimens of
Micaceous Iron-ore with brown Haematite. Impossible to state the age.
Similar ore occurs in Victoria, in Elvans in Porphyry, but it also occurs
in Tertiary rocks.
Latitude 26 degrees 17 minutes South, Longitude 119 degrees 54 minutes
East : The water shed of the Murchison, after crossing which we entered
the Triodia desert. Found oozing out of rock in the water-shed of the
Murchison. : Brown Haematite, decomposing to yellow. (Tertiary.)
Bituminous material. Mr. Cosmo Newbery reports that it is probably the
result of the decomposition of the excrement of bats. It contains
fragments of the wing cases of insects, and gives reactions similar to
the bituminous mineral or substance found in Victoria.
Latitude 25 degrees 14 minutes South, Longitude 121 degrees East : Peaks
rising out of sandy Triodia desert. (May 29th.) : 5, Quartz; 6,
Chalcedony; 7, Quartz; 8, Silky Shale (Silurian); 9, very Micaceous
Latitude 25 degrees 40 minutes South, Longitude 120 degrees 35 minutes
East : Found in the Frere Ranges. : 10, Ferruginous rock (Tertiary); 11,
portion of a seam or joint of a rock; 12, very fine soft purple slightly
micaceous rock (Silurian); 13, white micaceous slaty sandstone
Latitude 25 degrees 39 minutes South, Longitude 120 degrees 40 minutes
East : This rock was broken off the face of the side of a bank of brook.
It is rather soft, and would split; it is all in layers. I cut my
initials in it with a chisel. : Purple brown slate (Silurian).
Latitude 25 degrees 40 minutes South, Longitude 122 degrees 20 minutes
East, Mount Moore : Many ranges and some grassy country running from
longitude 122 to longitude 124 degrees, generally composed of this
description of rock. : 15, Rough quartzite (conglomeritic) Tertiary; 16,
rough quartzite with white band, brown and purple (Tertiary).
Latitude 25 degrees 32 minutes South, Longitude 124 degrees 17 minutes
East : Taken from rough range rising out of gently undulating desert.
(July 5th.) : White flinty rock; consists in the main of Silica, with
Magnesia and Alumina; it also contains water and traces of the Alkalies.
It is probably derived from the decomposition of granite. The "rough
ranges" are perhaps granitic.
Latitude 26 degrees 6 minutes South, Longitude 124 degrees 46 minutes
East : From a low table hill (Alexander Spring). : Translucent greenish
quartz. Impossible to state the probable age.
Latitude 26 degrees 2 minutes South, Longitude 125 degrees 27 minutes
East : This sandstone is the usual rock found in all the country from
longitude 122 degrees to 126 degrees 30 minutes. In it are receptacles
for water, and all the rising ground is composed of it. Very often one
side of the rise forms a cliff. Where this is taken from there is a long
line of cliffs with many creeks running from them, and low cliff-hills
all about. : Light red sandstone (desert sandstone, Tertiary).
Latitude 26 degrees South, Longitude 126 degrees 30 minutes East : From
the farthest ranges westward from telegraph line; good grassy country in
flats. The dark piece from a salt gully. (August 8th.) : 20, Silico
felspathic rock impregnated with Micaceous iron (probably from a dyke);
21, 22, green schist (Silurian).
Latitude 26 degrees 12 minutes South, Longitude 128 degrees East : In the
Cavanagh Ranges. Many ranges. (August 17th.) : Greenstone (Diabase ?).
Latitude 26 degrees 18 minutes South, Longitude 129 degrees 9 minutes
East : Tomkinson Ranges. Many ranges running East and West, and grassy
flats between them. (August 26th.) Mount Jane. : Aphanite.
NOTE BY THE EDITOR.
The publication of the preceding Journal affords an appropriate occasion
for inviting attention to the remarkable progress of Western Australia
within the last few years. Mr. John Forrest is proud to acknowledge
himself as belonging to that colony--indeed native-born--and his
fellow-colonists have invariably supported and encouraged his
explorations. Belonging to the public service, he has recognized as his
main object the discovery of new and good country with the view of
extending colonization, while within his ideas of duty there has been a
steadfast regard for those objects which promote the welfare of young
settlements. It has long been observed that Western Australia requires to
be thoroughly understood in its great capacities for carrying a large
population. There are vast resources yet to be developed, and what has
been accomplished in sheep and cattle stations, in copper and lead
mining, in wine-growing, in pearl fisheries, besides other important
operations, prove that the country has scarcely been tapped, and will be
sure to reward those who have the enterprise and industry to become
settlers. It is only necessary to substantiate these statements by
official documents, and, in the hope that this volume will do good
service to Western Australia, the following papers are reprinted.
GOVERNOR WELD'S REPORT TO THE EARL OF CARNARVON.
Government House, Perth,
September 30, 1874.
It has appeared to me that your lordship may think it desirable that,
before I leave, I should, so far as the limits of a despatch may enable
me to do so, place before you the present state of this colony, review
the progress it has made within the last five years, and indicate its
2. When I was appointed to the Government of Western Australia I was
aware that from various causes the colony had made but little progress;
and on my arrival in September, 1869, I found chronic despondency and
discontent, heightened by failure of the wheat crop, by the prospect of
the gradual reduction of convict expenditure and labour on which the
settlers had been accustomed to depend, by the refusal of the Home
Government to continue to send out free immigrants, and by that vague
dread of being thrown on their own resources so natural to men who have
been accustomed to take no part in their own affairs, and who have
consequently learned to rely entirely upon the Government, and not at all
upon themselves. One healthy symptom there was, and that was a desire,
not very strong perhaps, or even generally founded upon a just
appreciation of the past, or political foresight of the future; but still
a very wide-spread desire, and to many a reasonable and intelligent
desire, for a form of representative institutions which might give the
colonists some real voice in the management of their own affairs.
3. At the earliest possible moment I commenced work by travelling over as
much as possible of the settled and partially settled districts of the
colony; an old colonist bushman and explorer myself, travelling on
horseback and camping out were but natural to me, and I wished to judge
for myself of the capabilities of the colony; and before I had been six
months in the country I had ridden considerably over two thousand miles,
some part of the distance unfortunately, owing to an accident, with a
fractured rib and other injuries. I had made acquaintance with settlers
of all classes, and was able to form an opinion so accurate, both of the
people and of the country I have since had to deal with, and of their
capabilities, that I have never altered that opinion, nor have my many
subsequent journeys done more than supplement the knowledge I then
4. My first political aim was to promote local self-government in local
affairs by establishing or giving real power to road boards and
municipalities (a policy I afterwards carried into effect with school
boards also); and, so soon as I had obtained the sanction of her
Majesty's Government, I introduced that modified form of representative
institutions provided by 13 and 14 Vic., chap. 59, and then passed the
Municipal Acts I have mentioned above. This policy has fulfilled not only
my expectations but my hopes, and should the Council that is about to
meet wish to take the ultimate step of entering into complete
self-government by adopting the responsible system, the preparation
afforded by the last five years will admittedly be of the greatest value.
5. It fell to me to carry into effect the ecclesiastical policy indicated
by Lord Granville in a despatch, Number 80, of July 10, 1869, held over
for my arrival, in which his lordship suggested that grants (regard being
had to the number in the community of each denomination) should be equal
in substance and alike in form, and asked if there were any difficulties
in applying to Western Australia "that principle of religious equality
which had long been recognized in the Australian Colonies." Lord
Kimberley, in an enclosure to his despatch, Number 78, of December 19,
1870, expressed similar views. To this on March 1, 1871, in my despatch,
Number 37, I was enabled to reply that I had already carried the policy
recommended into practice, that the grants had been equalized by
"levelling up," that the vote for the Church of England was "now handed
over to the Bishop of Perth, the Government reserving the right to
satisfy itself that it is applied to those purposes of religious
ministration and instruction for which it is voted, and that all vested
interests are maintained intact and claims on the Government respected."
Since then I have supported such measures as were thought desirable to
promote self-organization, and I have moreover made liberal grants of
land for glebes, churches, schools, and institutions to the various
religious bodies in proportion to their numbers. I have reason to know
that on all sides satisfaction is felt at the position in which I shall
leave ecclesiastical affairs so far as the action of Government may
6. The elementary educational question, on my arrival, was a source of
much contention and ill-feeling, which came prominently into play, when
in the second session of 1871 I caused a Bill, drafted by myself, and the
general provisions of which I was subsequently informed were "entirely
approved of" by your lordship's predecessor, to be introduced into the
Legislature, and carried it--not, however, quite in its original form.
Though the alterations are unquestionably defects, and may somewhat mar
its success, it has hitherto worked very well, and has proved itself not
only effective but economical: it has received praise from its former
opponents and from the most opposite quarters, and old bitternesses are
now (I hope for ever) things of the past.
7. I have not failed to give the utmost support in my power--a support
unfortunately much needed in a colony like this--to the Chief Justice,
and it has been a great gratification to me that, on my recommendation,
the long and valuable services of Sir Archibald Paull Burt have been
recognized by her Majesty, and that he has received the honour of
knighthood--a rank which none of her Majesty's servants will more fitly
adorn. I have suggested to the Legislature that a small increase of
salary should be given to uphold the dignity of the Supreme Court; and
the question, to which I have already drawn the attention of the
Legislature, of the appointment of two Puisne Judges and constitution of
a Court of Appeal ought to be taken into consideration at no distant
period. One new resident magistracy has been established in a district
where it was very much needed, and two Local Courts have been
constituted. There is some difficulty in finding a sufficiency of fit
persons for the commission of the peace who are willing to exert
themselves, and the pay of the resident magistrates is in too many cases
insufficient to enable them properly to support their position as
representatives of the Government in their districts.
8. In the Military Department I have enabled successive commandments to
make reductions in the enrolled Pensioner Force. By withdrawing the guard
from Rottnest Island, and by concurring in the reductions at
out-stations, a very considerable saving has thus been effected. I have
given all the encouragement in my power to the Volunteer movement, and I
may confidently state that the Volunteer Force was never before in so
good a state, either so far as regards numbers or efficiency. To this
result the efforts of successive commandants and liberality of the
Legislature have mainly contributed.
9. It has been for me to preside over the latter stages of the existence
of the Imperial convict establishment in Western Australia, as a large
and important department; henceforth it will be confined in narrow
limits, and I may state with confidence that the great reductions and
concentrations that it has been my duty to effect have not been attended
with those disastrous effects to the colony that were so confidently
predicted, and also that although the residue of convicts are, many of
them, men of the doubly reconvicted class and long-sentence men,
discipline is well kept, serious prison offences are rare, the health of
the men is excellent, whilst severe punishments are seldom needful. I
here beg leave to make favourable mention of Mr. W.R. Fauntleroy, Acting
Comptroller-General of Convicts, who has proved himself to be my most
10. Much remains to be done in the Survey and Lands Department. When Mr.
Fraser in December, 1870, took charge of the department, the greatest
economy was needed to make the revenue of the colony meet the
expenditure, and consequently it was necessary to reduce and lay upon our
oars; Mr. Fraser reorganized his department, putting it on a new system,
letting out work by contract instead of keeping up a large permanent
staff, and thereby effected a considerable annual saving; at the same
time he has been steadily working, as time and means have permitted,
towards certain definite objects, namely, in the direction of a
trigonometrical survey, by fixing points, by making sketch and
reconnaissance surveys of new and important districts, and by accurately
fixing by survey main lines of road: this will give a connexion to the
records in the Survey Office which has been hitherto wanting, and will
contribute to enable him to construct that great desideratum--a large and
accurate map of Western Australia, so far as it is settled or partially
settled. I concur with Mr. Fraser in thinking that, so soon as means will
admit, a considerably increased annual expenditure should be devoted to
11. The joint survey of the coast will also aid in this work. The
Admiralty, in assenting to my proposal to undertake a joint coast survey,
which has been placed under a highly meritorious officer, Navigating
Lieutenant Archdeacon, R.N., have conferred a great benefit on this
colony, and promoted the interests of British commerce and navigation,
much valuable work having already been done.
12. In close connexion with the Survey and Lands Department is the topic
of exploration. So soon as possible after my first arrival, I took upon
myself to send Mr. John Forrest overland to Adelaide, along the shores of
the Great Bight, nearly on the line of Mr. Eyre's route in 1841. I did
this before the introduction of representative government, and it is
right to say that I knew that I could not have got a vote for it. I felt
that this was the last act of an expiring autocratic regime, and I
believe it was one of the least popular of my acts; but certainly no
small sum of public money has been expended with greater results--for, as
I hoped, Mr. Forrest's expedition has bridged the gap that separated West
Australia from the other colonies, has led to settlement on the shores of
the Great Bight, and to the connexion of this colony with the rest of the
world by electric telegraph. I never doubted of the future of West
Australia from the day when the news of Mr. Forrest's success reached
Perth. Since then more interest has been taken in exploration. A second
expedition was sent out to the eastward under Mr. Alexander Forrest in
1871, with the support of the Legislature and some of the settlers, and
at present under the same auspices Mr. John Forrest is again exploring to
the northward and eastward. His route will be guided by circumstances,
but it is not improbable that he may aim for the Central Australian
telegraph line, and I am already anxiously expecting tidings of him.
13. In 1870, with a vote I obtained from the Council, I engaged Mr. Henry
Y. Brown as Government Geologist. His geological sketch map and his
researches, which he pushed in one instance far into the interior, have
been of the greatest value; and it was with much regret that in 1872,
owing to the disinclination evinced in the Legislature in the then
straitened circumstances of the colony to expend money on a scientific
department, that I was obliged to forego my desire of making it a
permanent part of the establishment.
14. As Colonel Warburton's journey from the Central South Australian
telegraph line to our north-west coast was set on foot and its expenses
defrayed by private colonists of South Australia, I only allude to it to
acknowledge the obligation that this colony lies under to those
public-spirited gentlemen and to the gallant leader and his followers.
Parties headed by Mr. Gosse, by Mr. Giles, and by Mr. Ross have all
within the last two years penetrated from the eastern colonies to within
the boundary of our unexplored territory, but, beyond a certain extension
of geographical knowledge, without effecting any material results.
15. Under the head of Survey and Lands Department, it will be proper to
glance at the alterations in the Land and Mineral Regulations, which have
offered increased inducements and facilities for cultivation and
occupation, and which have considerably promoted mining enterprise. Gold
Mining Regulations have been also prepared and are ready for issue,
should occasion, as is likely, render them requisite. I willingly
acknowledge the assistance I have received from Mr. M. Fraser, the
Surveyor-General and Commissioner of Crown Lands, who has had much
experience in New Zealand, for the services he has rendered in all these
16. The mineral riches of this colony are very great. I have never
doubted but that they would ultimately become a main source of its
advancement. All the different kinds of auriferous quartz known in other
colonies are found abundantly in various parts of this--the question of
payable gold is, as I have long since reported, simply a question of
time. After many efforts, I at last, in 1873, obtained a vote for
prospecting, and the results are most promising, the fact of the
existence of rich auriferous quartz being now established. We shall
immediately be in a position to crush specimen consignments of quartz by
a Government steam-crusher, and I doubt not but that, if followed up, the
results will be most important. But gold is not the only nor perhaps the
most important of the minerals possessed by West Australia. The colony is
extraordinarily rich in lead, silver, copper, iron, plumbago, and many
other minerals are found in various localities, and indications of coal
and petroleum are not wanting--what IS wanting, is energy and enterprise
to develop these riches, and that energy and enterprise is being
attracted chiefly from Victoria, first by means of concessions that I was
enabled to make, and now by the reports of the new comers to their
friends. I made a small concession to a smelting company: and another,
and also an iron mining company, is in the field.
17. When on my arrival I turned around me to see what was to be looked
for to supply the place of Imperial expenditure, only second to our
minerals, our forests attracted my attention. They could not fail to do
so, because just before I came there was an outcry for the development of
this industry by Government aid. With Lord Granville's assent I made
liberal concessions, and thereby induced a pioneer company, shortly
followed by others from Victoria, to embark capital in the enterprise.
The public ardour here had, however, cooled, and an ignorant cry was
raised against foreigners, and the prospects of the trade were
systematically decried. Several causes besides this militated against it,
but it is surmounting them, and at the present moment not only are the
companies largely employing labour and expending money, but their own
success is becoming an established fact, and the export is enormously
increasing, and with good management must continue to increase
indefinitely. Whilst on this subject I may allude to the question of the
preservation of our forests, but as I am treating it more fully in a
separate despatch I will only say that this and the kindred question of
planting ought, at no distant period, to occupy the attention of our
18. The pearl shell and pearl fishery may be said to have sprung into
existence within the last few years. It employs a fleet of cutters and
schooners, chiefly of small size, on the north-west coast, Port Cossack
being the head-quarters. At Sharks Bay also there are a number of smaller
boats. A licence fee on boats and a tax on shells has been imposed by the
Legislature; laws for the protection of aboriginal divers and Malays have
been enacted. I shall immediately have a Government cutter on the
north-west coast for police and customs purposes, which will also be
useful in cases of shipwreck amongst the islands and inlets, and in
searching for and reporting the position of reefs, of anchorages, and of
new banks of pearl oysters. It will probably hereafter become advisable
to let areas for pearling under certain regulations as in Ceylon, but
this could not well be done with our present means and knowledge.
19. To turn now to the more settled industries, first in importance is
that of agriculture. It is chiefly in the hands of men of little capital,
and is carried on in a very slovenly way by the greater part of them. Bad
seasons, an over-great reliance on cereals, which have for several
successive years been seriously affected by the red rust, and a neglect
of other products suitable to the soil and climate, added in too many
cases to careless and intemperate habits, have until lately rendered the
position of many of the small farmers a very precarious one. Last year,
however, was more favourable, and they to a great extent recovered
themselves. The lesson of the past has not been altogether lost; they
have also been much assisted by the new Land Regulations, and a few
prosperous seasons will, I sincerely trust, put this class, which ought
to be a mainstay of the colony, into a really prosperous condition.
20. The cultivation of the vine is a profitable pursuit, and the quantity
of land fitted for that purpose is very great; both soil and climate are
eminently favourable to the growth of the grape. Recent legislation has
given some encouragement to wine-growers by facilitating the sale of
home-grown pure wine. The quantity of land laid down in vineyards is
slightly increased, but the class of settlers that are most numerous in
Western Australia do not readily take to industries that are new to them,
however profitable they may be, nor can they afford to wait for returns,
nor have many of them the knowledge necessary to make good wine: still
this industry will become one of the most important in the colony.
21. The pastoral interest is the pioneer interest of a new colony.
Western Australia has been somewhat less favoured than some other parts
of Australia in its pastoral lands, but it has, nevertheless, a good deal
of very good pastoral country, and under the extremely liberal
concessions lately offered to those who will devote capital to the
eradication of poison plants much more may be made available, whilst
fresh country is being largely occupied inland.
The progress, however, of the pastoral interest, considering the age of
the colony, though latterly great, is not SO great as might have been
expected; the comparatively good prices obtainable and anticipated for
meat have kept down the increase of stock, and consequently the yield of
wool; and as yet very little or nothing has been done to supplement
natural resources by growing artificial grasses and fodder plants. No
country presents greater capabilities for horse breeding, and cattle do
exceeding well and are very profitable.
22. The sandal-wood trade is in a flourishing condition, and has brought
money into the colony, and enabled many of the poorer classes to obtain a
livelihood by cutting that aromatic wood for export. It is, however,
doubted by some whether the labour employed in this trade does not
withdraw many from more steady and permanently useful labour on their
farms and small holdings.
23. In the matter of minor industries, sericulture holds a first rank. I
look to it in the future as a source of employment for paupers on the
hands of the Government, and also for women and children. I have taken
much interest in this pursuit, and have caused a mulberry plantation to
be made and plants distributed, and have published much information on
the subject. The Report of the Chamber of Commerce of Como (Italy),
alluded to in my despatch, Number 61, of 20th May, 1873, conclusively
shows that this colony is remarkably well adapted for the cultivation of
silk. The cultivation of the olive and the castor-oil plant are
industries for which this soil and climate are extraordinarily well
adapted. Tobacco, hops, and dried and preserved fruits might largely add
to the riches of the colony. In great part at my own expense, I have
introduced and distributed hop plants and various kinds of fruits of
great utility, and have, in fact, in the absence of any botanic garden
(in which I have vainly endeavoured to get the settlers to take an active
interest), made my own garden a kind of nursery for acclimatization and
distribution of useful and ornamental plants, and I have also given a
small concession for the cultivation of the cocoa-nut on the north-west
coast, where, in the absence of vegetables, it would be invaluable. And,
thanks to the Government of the Mauritius, I have been able to introduce
various kinds of sugar-cane, for which part of this territory is well
adapted. The growth of coffee has been also attempted on a Government
plantation, but without success. Cotton had already been proved to thrive
admirably, and to be excellent in quality, but is not considered likely
to pay without cheap labour. I may here note that, with an eye to the
future, I have made reserves for the purposes of public parks and
recreation grounds in several places.
Deer, Angora goats, hares, and trout have been also introduced.
24. I will now proceed to another branch of my subject--public works and
undertakings; and first in the category of public works and undertakings
I put those which relate to communications, and under that subdivision
immeasurably the most important are such means of communication as, by
terminating the isolation which has been the great bar to the advancement
of this colony, may make it a living part of the system of life and
progress which has been growing and prospering around it.
On this end was my mind set when I was appointed to the Governorship, to
this end have I worked steadily ever since, and this end is partially
accomplished, and its complete fulfilment is not distant.
The vote for the construction of the telegraph line via Eucla to South
Australia, passed last session, and the proposal of Messrs. Siemens
Brothers regarding a submarine cable to Madras, fitly close an
administration which found Western Australia within twelve miles, and has
already placed her in possession of a complete telegraphic system,
consisting of about nine hundred miles of wire, worked at a remarkably
small cost, in efficient order, already remunerative, and affording the
greatest advantages both to the public service and to private business.
It is noteworthy that four or five years ago there was a strong feeling
that the construction of telegraph lines was a waste of public money, and
only a few months ago a prominent member of the Legislature publicly
objected to the line which is to connect this colony with the rest of the
world, that it would only benefit a few individuals! Such ideas, however,
are rapidly becoming obsolete even in Western Australia.
I will here note that, under a power given me by law to fix and alter
rates, I, in January, 1873, reduced the charges to a uniform rate of one
shilling per ten words, and one penny for each additional word (press
messages at quarter price), and was the first to do so in the Australian
25. After much and persistent opposition, the Legislature was at length
induced to vote a subsidy for steam on the coast, connecting our western
ports and all this part of the colony with Albany, King George's Sound,
the port of call of the Royal mail steamers from Europe and the eastern
colonies. This has done much to throw open this colony, rendering access
to it no longer difficult and uncertain, and greatly facilitating
intercommunication. A very Chinese objection to steam communication has
been publicly made by the same gentleman to whose opinion on telegraphic
communication I have already alluded; namely, that it enabled people to
LEAVE the colony. I am, on the contrary, of opinion that it is certainly
conducing to progress and the promotion of commerce.
The steamer we have at present is, however, insufficient, but I doubt not
but that a second and more powerful boat will shortly be procured, as it
is already required: I understand, however, that no West Australian
capital is as yet forthcoming for the purpose, nor for steam
communication with India, than which nothing could be more important, as
it would render available the magnificent geographical position of the
colony, and open a market close at hand for its products. I have long ago
and frequently stated my willingness to give all possible Government
support to such an undertaking.
26. I am immediately about, by invitation, to proceed to Champion Bay,
and to cut the first sod of the first West Australian railway, on the
Geraldton and Northampton line. I have already fully indicated the
advantage that there is good reason to anticipate will result from the
opening of that line, which will, I do not hesitate to say, be the parent
of future and greater undertakings.
When the colony arrives at a position safely to borrow a million or a
million and a quarter, a railway from Fremantle and Perth, probably up
the Helena valley, into the York district, and thence down the country
eastward of the present Sound road, to the fine harbour of King George's
Sound, would do more than anything else to give an outlet to the
resources of the country and supply its wants; such a line would
ultimately be extended through the eastern districts and Victoria plains
northward to the Irwin, Greenough, and Geraldton.
But I will recall myself from these and other speculations of the yet
more distant future, and look back upon the modest past. Two tramways
with locomotives now bring timber to the coast from the Jarrah forests,
and there are also two other tramways for the same purpose, of less
extent, but still of some importance. I have made concessions to the
companies constructing them.
27. With regard to ordinary roads, I can very confidently say that,
considering the extent of the country and its scattered population, no
colony that I have ever seen is in a better position regarding roads.
Occasionally, owing to the loss of convict labour, the scarcity of free
labour, the disinclination of the people to tax themselves locally, and
the great extent of the roads themselves, parts of the roads already made
fall out of repair whilst other parts are being formed; but on the whole,
having perhaps traversed more of Western Australia than any one man in
the colony, I very confidently assert that, taking all in all throughout
the country, the roads are in a better condition than they have ever been
before. Large bridges have been constructed over the Upper Swan, Moore
River, Blackwood, Capel, and Preston, besides twelve smaller bridges, and
a large one completed at the Upper Canning.
28. Bushing the Geraldton sand-hills has been a very useful and
successful work; the experiment was first tried by Lieutenant-Colonel
Bruce. Part of the work has been done by convict labour, and part by
farmers and settlers in payment for a loan advanced to them for
seed-wheat before my arrival. It is not too much to say that this work
has saved the town of Geraldton and its harbour from destruction by sand.
29. A little has been done in the way of improving the Swan River
navigation by means of a dredge imported by Governor Hampton, and worked
by prison labour and by an appropriation in the Loan Act of 1872. A work
has also been constructed, from funds provided out of the same loan, at
Mandurah, by which the entrance to the Murray River has been improved.
30. Harbour improvements have occupied much of the attention of
Government. A fine and substantial open-piled jetty at Fremantle, seven
hundred and fifty feet long, has been constructed, and answers all the
purposes for which it was designed; but the larger and extremely
difficult question of the construction of a really safe harbour at or
near Fremantle is yet undecided. Various plans have been proposed, and
great pressure has been put on the Government to commence works hastily
and without engineering advice. At one time one scheme has found favour,
and another at another, and the merits of the rival schemes of our
amateurs have been popularly judged upon the principle of opposing most
strongly anything that was supposed to find favour with the Government.
Last session a strong wish to do SOMETHING caused the Legislature to
advocate a scheme which many persons think would cause the mouth of the
River Swan to silt up, and expose the town of Fremantle to danger, lest
the river in flood should burst out (as no doubt it did formerly) into
the South Bay over the town site. The question, however, is referred to
the Victorian Government engineer, and the Melbourne Government have been
asked to allow him to visit this colony, but I fear that the people will
not accept his decision; and unless the members of the new Legislature
will agree to do so, or, in the event of his not coming, do what I have
long since recommended, namely, ask your Lordship to refer the whole
question to the decision of Sir John Coode, or some other great
authority, and undertake beforehand to abide by it, I see no chance of
anything being carried into effect until the warmth and personal feeling
which, strangely enough, is always evoked by this question, shall be
succeeded by a more reasonable and business-like mood. One of my first
acts on reaching this colony was, in accordance with the previously
expressed wish of the Council and colonists, to send for an engineer of
high repute to report. His report only raised a tempest of objurgations,
and I must frankly confess failure in my efforts to leave Fremantle with
a harbour; and, indeed, I am far from being convinced that anything under
an enormous outlay will avail to give an anchorage and approaches, safe
in all weathers, for large ships, though I, with the Melbourne engineers,
think that the plan of cutting a ship channel into Freshwater Bay, in the
Swan River, advocated by the Reverend Charles Grenfel Nicholay, is worthy
of consideration. Jetties at Albany, King George's Sound, the Vasse,
Bunbury, and Geraldton, have been lengthened, one at Dongarra
constructed, and money has been voted for the construction of one at Port
Cossack. Moorings have been procured from England, and are being laid
down at Fremantle and other ports.
31. With respect to public buildings, the Perth Town Hall--a very large
and conspicuous building, commenced by Governor Hampton--was completed
not long after my arrival, and handed over by me to the City Council and
Municipality on June 1, 1870; attached to it I caused the Legislative
Chamber to be built, and so arranged that at no great cost this colony
possesses a council-room more convenient and in better taste than many I
have seen of far greater pretensions. It is, however, proposed hereafter
to build legislative chambers in the new block of Government buildings,
of which the Registration Offices now about to be commenced will form a
wing, for which the contract is 2,502 pounds. The public offices at
Albany were finished shortly after my arrival. I may mention, among a
number of less important buildings, the harbour-master's house, Albany;
school-houses there and in various other places; large addition to
Government Boys' School, Fremantle; court-house and police-station, and
post and telegraphic offices at Greenough and at Dongarra;
police-station, Gingin; addition to court-house, York; post and
telegraphic offices at Guildford, York; and Northam Bonded Store,
Government offices, and police-station, Roebourne. Considerable additions
have been made, which add to the convenience and capabilities of the
Fremantle Lunatic Asylum, and alterations and adaptations and additions
have been made to several other buildings; for instance, at Albany a
resident magistrate's house and also a convenient prison have been formed
at no great outlay. At Perth a building has been erected to which I call
attention, the Government printing-house; this new department has been of
immense service during the four years in which it has been in
existence--in fact, it would have been impossible to have gone on without
it; and the Government printing work is most creditably done at a very
reasonable cost. A handsome stone sea-wall has been commenced by convict
labour at the new jetty at Fremantle, which will reclaim much valuable
land, and greatly improve the appearance of the place. Harbour lights
have been erected at several places. A large lighthouse is in the course
of erection at Point Moore, at Geraldton, which will be of much
importance; and it is proposed, with the co-operation of other colonies,
to erect one near Cape Leeuwin, as recommended at an
intercolonial conference on that subject.
32. Postal facilities have been increased, several new offices opened,
and postages (under powers vested in me by law) considerably reduced, on
both letters to the colonies and newspapers, from the tariff I found in
force. In this a step in advance of some of our neighbours was taken.
33. I have reduced several police-stations on the recommendation of
Captain Smith, the superintendent, which appeared to be no longer
necessary; but, on the other hand, I have extended police protection into
outlying districts, both for the benefit of European settlers and of the
aboriginal inhabitants. These latter have gained little and lost much by
the occupation of their country by settlement. I have fought their battle
against cruel wrong and oppression, holding, I trust, the hand of justice
with an even balance, and I rejoice to say not without effect and benefit
to both races. Their services as stockmen, shepherds, and pearlers are
invaluable; and when they die out, as shortly no doubt they will, their
disappearance will be universally acknowledged as a great loss to the
34. The Legislature, I am happy to say, have latterly seconded my efforts
by encouraging industrial institutions for their benefit. Similarly they
have in the last session turned their attention to the condition of the
destitute and criminal children of our own race; and, in my own sphere, I
have done what was possible for the encouragement of the (denominational)
orphanages which have been long established and are in full working
order. This colony is, for its size and means, well supplied with
hospitals, asylums, and establishments for paupers, in which I have taken
great personal interest.
35. In legislation I have endeavoured to avoid over-legislation and
premature legislation. I have considered that free-trade principles are
especially in place in a colony situated as this is. The ad valorem duty,
and that on wines, spirits, and a few other articles, has been raised for
revenue purposes; some others have been put on the free list. I
successfully resisted the imposition of a duty on flour; I should have
simplified the tariff still further than I have done, and admitted free
many more articles--some of food, others used in our industries--had the
Legislature not objected; the tariff as it stands is inconsistent. The
English bankruptcy system has been introduced, and an Act passed
regarding fraudulent debtors; distillation has been permitted under
proper safeguards; Sunday closing of public-houses has been rendered
compulsory with good effect; a Lunacy Bill on the English model has
become law; the Torrens Land Registration system has been adopted, and
will shortly be put into force. Many equally important measures are
alluded to in their places in the pages of this despatch, and I will not
inflict upon your lordship a list of many minor Acts, some not
unimportant, which have proved beneficial in their degree.
36. Among lesser but not unimportant matters, I may mention that I have
extended the system of taking security from Government officers in
receipt of public moneys.
The commencement of a law and parliamentary library has been made.
37. Immigration from England has, on a small scale, been set on foot
lately, and families are now expected from neighbouring colonies, but our
population from obvious causes has increased but slightly during the last
five years; on my arrival it was said to be actually decreasing, and
there were many reasons why such an opinion was not
unreasonable--reduction of the convict establishment threw some out of
employment, expirees also desired to quit a country which to them had
been a land of bondage, and the prospects of the country were gloomy; now
there is a great want of labour, any that comes is at once absorbed, and
every effort should be made to attract a constant stream of immigrants.
38. It will be observed that when the whole authorized loan is raised,
the colony will be only in debt to the extent of a little over one year's
income, or 5 pounds 16 shillings 5 1/4 pence a head, whilst Victoria is
indebted 15 pounds 14 shillings 10 3/4 pence, New South Wales 19 pounds 7
shillings, South Australia 10 pounds 19 shillings 5 pence, Queensland 32
pounds 12 shillings 7 3/4 pence, Tasmania 14 pounds 3 shillings 6 3/4
pence, New Zealand 40 pounds 5 shillings 11 pence. I beg also to call
your lordship's attention to the fact that Western Australia has only yet
spent the 35,000 pound loan, and has now only begun to spend that of
100,000 pounds. I also would point out that the last annual increase of
revenue has about equalled the whole capital amount which has been
expended out of loans.
39. I have caused the following statistics to be furnished me from the
Treasury and Customs Departments for six years, ending on the 30th
September of each year. The first year given, that ending on the 30th
September, 1869, is the year immediately preceding my arrival, I having
been sworn in on that very day.
TREASURY AND CUSTOMS DEPARTMENTS STATISTICS FOR SIX YEARS TO 1874 IN
COLUMN 1: CATEGORY.
COLUMN 2: 1869.
COLUMN 3: 1870.
COLUMN 4: 1871.
COLUMN 5: 1872.
COLUMN 6: 1873.
COLUMN 7: 1874.
*Imports : 232,830/0/11 : 232,590/18/8 : 201,070/3/4 : 224,396/10/0 :
253,680/16/2 : 367,417/15/0.
**Exports : 178,860/15/2 : 204,447/2/2 : 194,934/9/3 : 228,807/12/9 :
278,502/16/0 : 398,900/8/6.
***Customs duties : 48,157/8/9 : 45,270/14/6 : 43,464/2/3 : 53,556/4/5 :
60,022/1/1 : 82,016/12/0.
****Revenue : 108,600/1/0 : 109,978/6/3 : 102,128/3/4 : 107,828/5/10 :
120,937/14/8 : 161,443/8/10.
****Expenditure : 107,213/1/10 : 119,478/8/4 : 112,285/10/7 :
103,205/16/0 : 120,259/11/9 : 131,334/18/5.
*Ships now expected will greatly swell the items of Imports and Customs.
**This is exclusive of RE-exported articles, and the valuations are very
moderate. In round numbers, the Exports may be said to be over 400,000
***Part of the increase of Customs duties is owing to increase of duties
on spirits, wines, and some other items; and ad valorem, on the other
hand, credit should be given for some articles which have been admitted
free. Taking the balance as the amount accruing from increase of duties,
it may be put at 12,000 pounds on the last year.
****It will be observed that for some time, until better seasons returned
and measures bore fruit, I had to a slight extent to rely on the surplus
found in the chest to make Revenue and Expenditure meet. To have starved
the Expenditure at that time would have been to have damaged the future
progress of the colony, and the Legislative Council opposed several
reductions that I thought might have been effected.
On the 30th September, 1874, there was a sum of 36,616 pounds 3 shillings
5 pence in the chest, and something like this sum will be at the disposal
of the Legislature at their meeting, beyond current revenue.
40. I need hardly say that the commercial state of the colony is
admittedly sound, and I am informed in a more prosperous condition than
at any previous period of its existence. Landed property, especially
about Perth, has lately risen immensely in value, and the rise is, I
hope, spreading and will reach the outlying districts. Perth has lost its
dilapidated appearance, and neat cottages and houses are springing up in
all directions, and the same progress to some extent is noticeable in
Fremantle and elsewhere.
41. I will not conclude this Report without recalling the success which
attended the efforts made by the Government, to which my private
secretary Mr. Henry Weld Blundell largely contributed, to represent the
products of Western Australia at the Sydney Exhibition of 1873. Much of
this success was attributable to the exertions of Mr. F.P. Barlee,
Colonial Secretary, then representing at Sydney this colony in the
In that conference, the first to which a representative of this colony
was admitted, and which therefore marked an epoch in its political
existence, Mr. F.P. Barlee took a prominent part, ably upheld the trust I
placed in him, and received a most marked and cordial reception from our
colonists on his return.
41. I have further to express my obligations to that officer for the
assistance he has ever given me; were it not for his fearless and loyal
support, for the confidence which is placed in him by the very great
majority of the colonists, and for his fidelity in following my
instructions and carrying out my policy, it would have been impossible
for me, under a form of government most difficult to work, to have
carried to a successful issue the trust that has been imposed upon me,
and to have left this colony prosperous and self-reliant.
42. Should your lordship, considering the position in which I found
Western Australia--the reduction of imperial expenditure it has been my
duty to effect, the failure of the wheat crop for four successive seasons
and consequent depression, the inexperience of a new Legislature, the
absence of any propositions for the benefit of the colony from the
opposition, the obstacles thrown at first in the way of all measures
which have eventuated in good--should you, considering these things and
the present state of the colony, be of opinion that the administration of
its affairs during the last five years has not been unsatisfactory or
unfruitful, I beg that you will award a due share of credit to the
Colonial Secretary, who, as my mouthpiece in the Legislature, has carried
on single-handed all parliamentary business, and also to those gentlemen
who are now, or have at various times been, members of my executive, and
who have ever united to support me; to the nominated members of the
Legislature who have steadily voted for all the measures which have led
to the present progress of the colony, and whose merits the
constituencies have fully recognized by electing them as representatives
on vacancies in every case where they have stood; to the elected members,
who every session have given me increased support, and who, forming
two-thirds of the Legislature, had it in their power entirely to have
reversed my policy; and lastly, to the people of Western Australia, who
on each election have increased my strength, on whose ultimate good
sense, I--knowing colonists, myself an old colonist--put my reliance, a
reliance which has not been disappointed.
I have, etc.,
(Signed) FRED. A. WELD,
The Earl of Carnarvon,
etc. etc. etc.
STATISTICS IN POUNDS/SHILLINGS/PENCE.
VALUE OF IMPORTS AND EXPORTS FROM 1861 TO 1873.
1861 : 147,912 : 95,789.
1862 : 172,991 : 119,313.
1863 : 157,136 : 143,105.
1864 : 169,856 : 132,738.
1865 : 168,413 : 178,487.
1866 : 251,907 : 150,066.
1867 : 204,613 : 174,080.
1868 : 225,614 : 192,636.
1869 : 127,977 : 101,359.
1870 : 213,258 : 200,984.
1871 : 198,011 : 199,288.
1872 : 226,656 : 209,107.
1873 : 297,328 : 265,217.
VALUE OF IMPORTS AND EXPORTS FOR 1874.
COLUMN 1: COUNTRIES.
COLUMN 2: IMPORTS.
COLUMN 3: EXPORTS.
United Kingdom : 188,243/10/8 : 268,726/4/0.
Victoria : 75,588/7/0 : 8,038/1/0.
South Australia : 44,021/9/2 : 41,004/11/0.
New South Wales : 1,236/4/9.
New Zealand : 2,065/1/6 : 12,768/6/0.
Mauritius : 23,247/7/4 : 3,435/1/0.
Singapore : 11,346/19/2 : 53,648/16/0.
Ceylon : 1,135/2/0 : 437/0/0.
British India : 20/10/0 : 1,345/0/0.
All other British Possessions : 20/10/0 : 130/3/7.
China : 11,461/18/0 : 36,133/17/0.
Java : 5,646/2/6 : 2,934/19/6.
Timor : 246/14/4.
U.S. of America : 3/15/0 : 101/0/0.
Macassar : - : 118/0/0.
Whaling Ground : - : 16/0/0.
Total : 364,262/15/0 : 428,836/19/1.
REVENUE AND EXPENDITURE FROM 1861 TO 1873.
1861 : 67,261 : 81,087.
1862 : 69,406 : 72,267.
1863 : 71,708 : 71,073.
1864 : 71,910 : 70,714.
1865 : 77,942 : 74,985.
1866 : 89,382 : 84,652.
1867 : 90,430 : 89,501.
1868 : 99,496 : 89,726.
1869 : 103,661 : 103,124.
1870 : 98,131 : 113,046.
1871 : 97,606 : 107,146.
1872 : 105,301 : 98,248.
1873 : 134,832 : 114,270.
REVENUE AND EXPENDITURE FOR 1874.
Customs : 82,275/7/3.
Land Sales : 7,679/2/4.
Land Revenue : 19,806/0/5.
Money Orders : 5,888/12/0.
Telegrams : 1,784/17/8.
Fines, Forfeitures, and Fees of Court : 2,022/13/3.
Reimbursements in aid of expenses incurred : 1,482/12/3.
Special Revenue (North District) : 2,133/12/0.
Miscellaneous Revenues : 11,152/18/11.
Total Revenue : 134,225/16/1.
Civil Establishment : 58,745/9/9.
Miscellaneous Disbursements : 53,111/8/6.
Parliamentary Salaries : 3,910/15/8.
Judicial Establishment : 6,098/18/10.
Customs Establishment : 2,045/1/3.
Police Establishment : 12,923/16/2.
Medical Establishment : 2,377/3/4.
Postal and Telegraph Department : 4,053/13/3.
Total Expenditure : 143,266/6/8.
PUBLIC DEBT : 100,000 pounds.
POPULATION OF WESTERN AUSTRALIA.
1850 : 5,886.
1853 : 9,334.
1856 : 13,391.
1859 : 14,837.
1862 : 17,246.
1865 : 20,260.
1868 : 22,733.
1871 : 25,724.
1874 : 26,209.
SUCCESSION OF GOVERNORS OF WESTERN AUSTRALIA.
NAME AND TITLE. APPOINTMENT. RETIREMENT.
Captain James Stirling, Lieutenant-Governor. June, 1829. September 1832.
Captain Irwin, Acting Lieutenant-Governor. September 1832. September
Captain Daniell, Acting Lieutenant-Governor. September 1833. May 11,
Captain Beete, Acting Lieutenant-Governor. May 11, 1834. May 24, 1834.
Sir James Stirling (formerly Captain Stirling), Governor. August 1834.
John Hutt, Esquire, Governor. January 1839. December 1845.
Lieutenant-Colonel Clarke, Governor. February 1846. February 1847.
Lieutenant-Colonel Irwin (formerly Captain Irwin), Governor. February
1847. July 1848.
Captain Charles Fitzgerald, Governor. August 1848. June 1855.
A.E. Kennedy, Esquire, Governor. June, 1855. February 1862.
Lieutenant-Colonel John Bruce, Acting Governor. February 17, 1862.
February 27, 1862.
J.S. Hampton, Esquire, Governor. February 27, 1862. November 1868.
Lieutenant-Colonel John Bruce, Acting Governor. November 1868. September
F.A. Weld, Esquire, Governor. September 1869. September 1874.
W.C.F. Robinson, Esquire, C.M.G. September 1874.
GILBERT AND RIVINGTON, PRINTERS, ST. JOHN'S SQUARE, LONDON.
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