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Southern Cross News The Bunbury T. M. Company Adelaide Mining Quotations The Ashburton Gold Discovery The Yilgarn Goldfields English Investors and West Australian Gold Deposits Formation of a Syndicate in London
Record no:
11 June 1890
Kept:Press clippings book 1, p. 28



A few lines to let you know how we are getting on up here.  The late rains
have put a considerable supply of water in all the tanks and dams, but

have not filled them, with the exception of the Lake Cotton tanks which
are full.  Rain commenced again last night and continued till this


During last week there was a little excitement and indignation amongst the
business people and miners owing to most of the leading mines making
application to the Warden for another six months' exemption or partial
exemption from work.  A petition was signed by a great many here,
objecting to any further exemptions and each case, as it came before the
Warden, was objected to.  Mr Finnerty was equal to the occasion and met
the difficulty in a way that appears to have given entire satisfaction all
round, by granting the applicants one month's exemptions each, with one
exception, Fraser's South Co., and they got three months.  This caused
considerable comment, as this claim is understood to belong to a t’other
[sic] side Co. and we were led to believe, from the first, that the
othersiders would show us the way should they acquire any property here.
This certainly does not look like it, with an immense tank of water on
their claim and plenty of teams about to carry all their machinery to the
field.  Under such circumstances it seems at the least a little queer to
me that these bloated capitalists should be applying for six months


Great satisfaction was felt here when the news arrived that the convenors
of the meeting in Perth, to petition the Government to suspend the labour
clause for another six months, had been so signally defeated, for various
reasons.  In the first place, it is looked upon as a slight on the
Warden's judgment, as the Mining Act, as it is, gives the Warden power to
protect and grant exemptions to all deserving applicants on their showing
just cause, and I must say everyone here appears to have the greatest
confidence in the Warden's judgment and impartiality, whereas on the other
hand, by a general suspension of the labour clause, claims that have been
held for upwards of two years and have not done an honest month's work,
and won't if they can help it, are still kept alive, depriving others that
would prospect the ground from doing so.  It is now time to work them or
to stamp them out.


We have had two batterys at work during the last two weeks, the Central
company and the Exchange.  The Central had been working their ten head
stamps, but unfortunately broke one of their stamp heads, and having no
duplicates are now working with nine.  This company, as is well known, are
perfectly independent of the elements for water, as they have worked all
along with salt water in their boiler, without any ill effects, and
condense all their water for domestic use from it.

It is generally reported here, in fact it is the common talk, that they
(the Central) are crushing a very inferior stone, not nearly up to the
average of stone they could crush, and which, people say who ought to
know, is available.  But perhaps that is nobody's business but the
managers and directors, of of [sic] whom there are plenty, and whose
combined wisdom the shareholders have entire confidence in.  So the public
needn't bother.  Fraser's Company have a plate to put in their boiler
before they start.  It is anticipated that will take about nine days.
They don't appear to be in a hurry, or they would have had the old plate
cut out by the time the boiler maker got here.  That is what was done on a
former occasion when they burnt a plate, and the query is, Why was it not
done this time?  Some of the shareholders might with justice ask at the
next meeting.  The Exchange mill has crushed about ninety tons in
something like a fortnight, only working daytime.  It worked splendidly
the whole time it ran, not the slightest hitch occurring.  I look upon it
as a great success, and I would advise any company that contemplates
getting a crushing plant to pause before purchasing a stamper battery, to
see the further results of this inexpensive little wonder.  Some of the
stone crushed is as hard as any on the field, and it crushed it well.
They stopped last Friday for the want of water, as this company had
insufficient provision for water.

According to some of the experienced amalgamators that have seen this mill
at work, they find fault with the size of the screens used, as they
consider them too large for a field that carries such a percentage of fine
gold, and also in the absence of after-saving appliances; but this appears
to be the general complaint here, which can be easily remedied, and I have
no doubt will before long, when the results will about double.


I mentioned before about Lake Cotton tanks being full, in fact the whole
lake is covered a few inches deep, and, considering this is only one and a
half miles from the township, people are wondering how it is that the
Government tank sinkers took the trouble to plant themselves six miles
further south at a place called Sayer's Tank, and commenced enlarging the
tank there instead of deepening Lake Cotton and making one immense tank
there, as it is the best watershed about the district.  It fills before
any other and holds, as proved by the last two seasons, like an iron tank.
 Perhaps they will say it gets brackish when low, well so does Sayer's
tank.  Perhaps they'll say the water remains thick and has a reddish
colour in Lake Cotton.  Both of these complaints are easily cured by a
shovelfull [sic]of hot ashes or a packet or two of salts.  Anyway dirty
water is better than none.  Kookerdine tank also gets brackish when very
low, which convinces me that by sinking one very large tank the freshness
of the water would be maintained by reason of the greater body of water.
Distance is another consideration, when the price of horse feed is taken
into account, and it is well known that a share of rain would fill Lake
Cotton, when some of the other tanks would only catch a few inches.
Another thing in favour of Lake Cotton is that it has an area of about 150
yards in length by about 80 yards across, the whole of which could be
excavated to a depth of 5 feet at little expense, as proved by the tank
already sunk in the bed of it, and which is now full and overflowing,
while most of the other tanks, after the late rains, only contain a few
feet.  Of course Lake Cotton can only be excavated in the dry season; but
the question is: why go so far from the centres of population to excavate
tanks, when we have proved the existence of better ground nearer home?
Can anybody answer why?


Mr H. C. Castilla, the manager of the above company, reports, under date
June 9th: — "I made my monthly visit to the Bunbury Tin Mine on the 6th
inst., and found matters proceeding very satisfactorily.  The manager (Mr
Hollingsworth) has now completed the water supply system for continued
washing throughout the winter.  Up to date, singularly enough, the
rainfalls have not augmented the water supply.  The heavy rains, it
appears, have been confined to the coast.  The rainfall in the Blackwood
has been comparatively slight.  I think, however, there has been a heavy
rainfall there since the 6th.  If so, every brook on the field will be
running.  During my stay the manager streamed up 15 cwt. of tin in about
an hour, completing three tons, which, I expect, will arrive here this
week.  The stripping, raising, and stacking operations, have been going on
as usual, and there is on the surface a large body of stuff ready for
treatment.  The more this claim is investigated the greater is the promise
it gives of being both a paying and a lasting concern."




Broken Hill, c.r. £11 11s; Block No. 10, £6 17s; Central, £6 0s 6d; Block
No. 14,
£5 15s; Souths, £7 7s; Junctions, 70s; British Blocks, £2 1s 6d.



A correspondent telegraphed to us, yesterday, under date Onslow, June 10: —

James Hackett arrived from the Ashburton Goldfields yesterday morning.  He
states that the route from Onslow is the best.  There is water all the
way.  The longest stage is between the River and the Field, a distance of
25 miles.  Edward Bewsher arrived last night.  He states that he worked
eight weeks, and got twenty ounces of gold.  He returns with provisions at
the end of the week.  A few men are leaving the field.


A correspondent gives the following particulars, which mainly corroborate
the news already published, concerning the condition of affairs on the
eastern goldfields.  He reports all quiet at Southern Cross, on his
arrival near the end of May.  The Central was crushing day and night.  Mr
Ryan had overcome the difficulty arising from the machinery getting out of
order, and was prepared to continue crushing for three months, when he
would clean up.  The Exchange was crushing by day.  At both claims the
managers seemed satisfied at the result of the crushing.  About fifteen
men were washing alluvial, and, from all he could learn, were doing fairly
well.  Altogether there were about 100 men, 26 women, and some children at
the Cross, and all seemed in good spirits.  There was a plentiful supply
of water.  The Kookerdine tank held 5 ft 6 in., and Fraser's South tank
was full.  He was informed that the Fraser's would not be ready to resume
crushing for a month, when it was expected that the necessary repairs
would be completed.  He visited Parker's Range on May 26 and 27.  There
were 22 men on the field, and all was orderly.  There was a plentiful
supply of fresh water.  On arrival at Golden Valley, about the 29th May,
he found that the place was practically deserted, only two hotel keepers
and their families remaining.  There was a plentiful supply of water.  He
reports that there was no sickness on any part of the field.  He found a
plentiful supply of water along the road when returning, and the road
itself was in fair order, excepting between Belmunger and York.  He met
six waggons [sic] and four carts heavily laden, en route to the
goldfields, and also 31 men proceeding to the same place.  He considers
that the well and pump erected by McAlister, about two miles from the York
end of Hunt's dam, are a good piece of work.  He considers that if a
couple of fenced wells with pumps, were constructed along the road, it
would put an end to any further complaint concerning the York route.
During his trip he heard no complaints either along the road or on the




We hear, says the European Mail of May 9th, that a syndicate has been
formed with a capital of £10,000 in 100 shares of £100 each, one-half of
which will be payable on subscription, and the balance as the committee
shall direct, to assist Mr John Calvert in his gold search in Western
Australia.  Mr Calvert, who is a well-known mining expert, avows that in
no place as he come upon so rich and extraordinary a gold "bunch" as
during his expedition in Western Australia.  Within a very limited area,
he says, there is a veritable treasure, in the shape of a deposit of gold,
which, from what he saw on the ground, and from samples he brought away,
he roughly estimates at from 4 to 4 1/2 millions sterling.  This, Mr
Calvert says, "is what was in sight — it would be difficult to estimate
how far this 'bunch' went down, but perhaps not far."  The district where
this outcrop occurs, owing chiefly to the absence of water, has hitherto
remained unexplored, except by Mr Calvert, who, with the knowledge and
experience he has already gained, is now prepared to organise, and
undertake charge of, an immediate expedition to secure this treasure.  Mr
Calvert thinks he may accomplished this at a cost of £6,000, but he
stipulates that not less than £10,000, shall be subscribed, as he wishes
to provide for all possible contingencies, in order to bring the
expedition to a successful issue.  The money subscribed, or so much of it
as may be required, will be devoted solely to the payment of actual
expenses necessary for the expedition, and the remuneration of Mr Calvert,
and of all parties interested in the result, will be entirely dependent
upon the success of the undertaking.

The memorandum from which we have gleaned the above particulars for the
says that the whole treasure will be consigned to the Bank of England in
the names of a committee of five members, three of which shall be
nominated by the syndicate and two by Mr Calvert.  Out of the proceeds of
the venture the subscribers shall first be paid whatever money they have
advanced, together with a bonus of three times that amount, and Mr Calvert
shall be paid a like sum.  Thus, supposing the expenses amount to, say,
£7,500, the syndicate would receive, in addition to the unexpended balance
(£2,500), the return of the whole outlay, together with a bonus of three
times that amount, say, £30,000.  If the venture comes off as expected, Mr
Calvert is to receive £30,000, and out of the balance of profits realised,
the syndicate is to receive 50 per cent. and Mr Calvert and the promoters
50 per cent. The agreement between the syndicate and Mr John Calvert, who
has sailed for Western Australia, is to be seen at the office of Mr H. B.
Roberts, the solicitor to the company, 6 Queen Anne's Gate, Westminster,
where copies of the memorandum and articles of association of the company
can be obtained on payment of one shilling for each copy.
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