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the beautiful Liverpool and London clippers that sail weekly and oftener to Melbourne, whence to Adelaide steamers run constantly. The writer of this paper left Melbourne for England on the 2nd of March last to sail round Cape Horn, and landed at Plymouth in 78 days. He left London for the overland trip, viâ Marseilles, on the 16th of July by the Simla from Suez, and performed the entire journey from London to Melbourne in 48 days—the shortest trip on record. He returned from Adelaide by that fine clipper the Orient, on the 21st of December last, viâ the Cape of Good Hope, remaining there three days, and yet landed at Plymouth in 98 days. During the three voyages he never experienced a gale of wind.
POPULATION. In the year 1840, the white population of South Australia amounted to 14,600 souls. In the year 1857, to 110,000 souls.
£ s. d.
1840 to 30,199 14 11
724,315 2 0
£ s. d.
1838 158,582 00
6,442 0 0
1857 1,507,271 00
1838 to 700 0 0
60,162 1 0
148,036 100 1854 182,41900 1855
283,479 00 1856
412,163 00 1857"not yet known, but estimated at 600,0001. at least.
CORN, FLOUR, AND CEREALS. The value of corn, the produce of
£ s. d. the colony, exported, amounted in 1851 to
73,359 10 0 1852 212,568 9 0 1853 257,293 11 0 1854 307,267 10 0 1855
236,400 0 0 1856
556,571 11 4
1857 669,805 13 0 Note.-In 1839 an act of council was passed imposing a heavy duty upon
the exportation of wheat and other grain, flour, meal, &c. This act was repealed a few years later, and South Australia is the granary from which Victoria largely draws for bread food. By the numerous steamers now regularly plying on the Murray river for two thousand miles, Adelaide enjoys a large portion of the trade with the great gold diggings of the sister colony.
The Burra-Burra, the Kapunda, and some other mines increase in value the deeper they are worked. Since the establishment of the smelting-works of the Copper Mining Company, pure copper in plate and tile, to a great extent, is exported, instead of the rough ores formerly sent to Swansea.
2,370 Garden and orchard
203,411 To this quantity of land in cultivation may be added some thousands of acres more brought under the spade and plough during the last eighteen months. The result of the above shows that the land thus cultivated is, in proportion to the population, greater in quantity in South Australia than in England, Scotland, and Ireland altogether.
In addition to the above, there are also some 35,000 square miles of pasture-land let on lease to the squatters for pastoral purpose, some at a distance of 700 miles from Adelaide. There are millions of acres more in the colony belonging to the Crown, only waiting the enterprise and capital of future settlers.
The sum received by the government for the purchase of waste lands of the Crown from 1850 to 1856 inclusive, is 1,422,5421. 11s. 5d.
It would be a curious inquiry what rate of profit has been received by the fortunate men who have bought the million of acres above represented. In the city of Sydney one quarter of an acre, originally parted with for a gallon of spirits, subsequently changed owners for 10,0001. Land in
Melbourne, originally sold by the government at 5l. per acre, realised at the rate of 80,0001. per acre, and some of it is now letting (built upon) at 12,0001. per acre per annum. Land in Hindley, South Adelaide, sells at 20,0001. per acre, costing the original owner the smallest amount of bank paper issued in England.
A section in the rear of Port Adelaide of some 150 acres, bought originally at 20s. per acre, was cut up into allotments and realised upwards of 200,0001. within the last two years.
One of the most promising and pleasing features in South Australia is its rural small proprietary: Hundreds of stalwart yeomen who have been sent out, with or without families, free of expense to themselves, and who, in Dorsetshire, Wiltshire, Ireland, and all parts of the home country, had struggled against poverty, and often fallen into its spares, are now freeholders in their own right, independent men, who have one, two, or more sections of 80 acres each, well tilled and cultivated. The country is dotted with many a pretty homestead, with garden well stocked with all the bright flowers that bloom under a southern sun, and the potatoground, the apple-orchard, the vine, and peach, and apricot, provide not only luxuries, but valuable food on the hot summer days. The pigs last summer were daily fed upon peaches by the bushel, which would put to blush the expensive but diminutive fruit displayed in Covent-garden. Grapes of all varieties, many bunches weighing from 3 to 5lbs., can be bought at the gardens at 1d. per lb. Were fruit as easily imported in condition as grain, the wealth of the colony would be vastly increased. The manufacture of wines is becoming an interesting experiment. Several large vineyard proprietors have of late years succeeded to a considerable extent in producing some very fine samples. At present, however, the wines made are consumed in the colony, and but few pipes have been exported.
The climate of South Australia is, without exception, as fine any the world. Although in summer the thermometer often touches 100 deg: and even upwards in the shade, the air is so transparent and pure and dry, that no temperate man or woman need mind it.
The heat in the Red Sea last July, although Fahrenheit only mounted to 92 deg. at highest, was so intolerable, from the humidity of the atmosphere, that ourselves, with ten years' experience of Adelaide, were completely prostrated. So in Ceylon-so at Aden : whilst in South Australia the heat of the weather only has never, during so many years, kept us from the open air or active business.
The government of South Australia is ultra-liberal, objectionably so, some think, and those not the least intelligent. Vote by ballot is perfectly unnecessary in a country where “ Jack is as good as his master :" where your bullock drivers and day-labourers are perfectly independent gentlemen, to whom you must "talk civil:" where your housemaid or cook can always find a home and a husband if they mislike their “place :" where even boys of sixteen can earn their pound a week, and smoke a pipe, drink a pot, or rap out an oath with their seniors. Universal suffrage may be a beautiful theory to the Chartist agitators of England or elsewhere, but the result of it is sometimes singular in South Australia. At the last election for East Torrens, in which there is a population of several thousands, the election was decided by a majority of 2, with 72 and
74 votes on either side respectively. The great grievance just now in the colony is that the people have literally nothing to grumble at, or grumble for.
Railways are going ahead, the great railway to the North, via the Kapunda, the Burra-Burra, and on to the Murray, to connect Adelaide with the steamers, and thus with the diggings and the interior for 2000 miles, is completed as far as Gawler Town. The railway in Port Adelaide has long been in operation.
We cannot better close this article than with an extract from a letter written by Mr. Edward Wilson, the editor of the Melbourne Argus-the Times of Australia. This gentleman has recently taken a trip down the Murray and throughout the colonies; the following is his testimony to South Australia :
“ The South Australian land system runs greatly upon eighty-acre sections. Surveys may be claimed summarily all over the colony, and the market is constantly kept supplied with eligible land at the upset price. Sections of eighty acres being the rule-a sort of established institution--you find the whole surface of the country divided into plots of this size. And a very good size, too! A labouring man knows that with the industrious application of a year or two he can save 801., and he concentrates his attention upon acquiring that sum.
“ Meantime he is learning every day something to fit him for becoming a farmer in a new climate, and he is looking round carefully for an eligible site for his future operations. After he has purchased his land, he perhaps has still to work on till he has procured the means of fencing it and purchasing a team of bullocks or pair of horses. At last he is the proud possessor of a home of his own, and sturdily he buckles to his task of becoming an independent farmer. His first crop probably leaves him a comparatively rich man ; his second enables him to buy another section or two adjoining his first; and thus little by little he becomes a thriving landowner and agriculturist ;--not so fast as to lead to intoxication at his position, and consequent mistakes--not so slowly as to dishearten him from effort, or to deaden his energies in any way. And it is by the multiplication of such men that South Australia is what she is, and that she is raising rapidly a race of industrious yeomen that I believe firmly will compare favourably with anything in the whole world.
“ Impelled by such influences, everything seems cheap and plentiful. The condition of the people is most gratifying, quite irrespective of money considerations. And here I must express my doubts whether your political economists, who argue so clearly and conclusively upon all sorts of subjects, do not often greatly lose sight of the real blessedness of cheapness. I know that it is a rash thing to run counter to their doctrines, or to challenge the conclusions at which they so skilfully arrive. A country ought, doubtless, to devote its principal energies to the production of that article for which nature has specially adapted it, and rest contented with exchanging its superfluity for the good things produced in superfluity elsewhere. But as far as the more simple elements of comfort and luxury are concerned, I have always felt inclined to believe that the country is happiest which produces them in the greatest abundance, and in which things of this kind are common, plentiful, and cheap. Men may get rich less rapidly; but they are better, healthier, happier men. Life is better
worth having, and the current of existence runs on in a more equable, natural, and wholesome stream. A'great grain-producing people are not only well supplied with the most essential staff of life, but with all its kindred comforts and blessings. Plenty of wheat means plenty of hay, oats, and garden-stuff; plenty of fruit and vegetables, plenty of fowls, eggs, pork, butter, cheese, and milk. And in the profusion of these, and in the well-fed, healthy wife and children consequent upon their profusion, no slight portion of the happiness of the natural man is involved. You may
your monster nuggets at me, and talk of the convenience of a multiplicity of such representatives of wealth ; but your highly-paid artisan may live in a noisome right-of-way ; your prosperous digger may be continually one mass of mud, and never know a comfortable meal. And, in spite of all the writings of all the economists, in spite of a very profound deference generally to the doctrine of national adaptation to national peculiarities, I shall live and die in the conviction of the happiness ever associated with agricultural operations, of the blessedness of cheapness and the profusion of the simpler good things of mother earth.
“ To show the difference of the two colonies, I may mention that at the last hotel I visited in Victoria, I paid four and sixpence for every meal I ate. At the very first hotel in South Australia, I paid two shillings for a better meal, with all the adjuncts to comfortable refreshment in far greater profusion and of much better quality.
“ Two things struck me forcibly in my progress through the country -the number of the flour-mills, and the number of enclosures surrounded by well-grown hedges. If the matter were diligently looked into, I believe it would be found that the languid condition of your agriculture has been in no slight degree attributable to a sort of monopoly of milling. Too much power has been allowed to get into a few hands, with regard to dictating the price of agricultural produce; and it has been sometimes used in an unscrupulous manner. With a multiplicity of mills this becomes iinpossible, and I look upon it as a very healthy sign that in a colony with such agricultural tendencies as this, mills should abound on all sides.
“ Before dismissing this subject of cultivation, I would mention that I was informed by an intelligent gentleman that the quantity of land under crop this year in South Australia amounted to two acres per head for every man, woman, and child in the colony. The quantity of land under cultivation in Victoria is about 180,000 acres, or averaging a fraction more than three-eighths of an acre per head. At the South Australian average, it should be about 900,000 acres. Your soil and climate are even more suitable for agriculture than those of your neighbour to the westward. If you had 900,000 acres under crop, what would probably be the average number of your unemployed ? ”