The Argus at KellyGang 3/9/1868 (2)

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There are several reefs in the place which yield 1oz. 7dwt. to the ton, and yet have had to be abandoned for the want of machinery. One mine was to his own knowledge abandoned by its owners for want of the necessary appliances and capital to work it. It then fell into the hands of a man who was able to command the necessary means, and has since yielded a very large quantity of quartz, bearing the average yielding capacity of loz. 2dwt. to the ton. The same is the case with the alluvial diggings there. To prove the rich deep leads of Chiltern and Eldorado, capital and machinery will be required. These leads are very extensive, and are quite as rich as those which have rendered Ballarat so famous. He had endeavoured, as shortly as he could, to show the importance of the proposed railway to the Ovens and Murray districts, but he believed the line would be of still more importance to tho metropolis, and would benefit it in a still greater degree than even those localities named. The Government were committed to the undertaking, and he thought that every man who was interested in the prosperity of the country should treat the subject purely on its merits, and not as a political question. If the Melbourne mercantile public would only strengthen the hands of Government in the matter he had little doubt but the railway would soon be commenced.

Mr D P Keogh said the period had arrived when the formation of such a railway was essentially necessary, and he hoped that all interested in the Ovens and Murray districts would help Government to carry through the proposed scheme. It was a question above all party politics, and one that should be supported by all classes. The resolution he was about to submit did not, he was glad to say, allude to any of the leagues which had been formed in the Ovens and Murray districts to carry on this railway scheme. There was a good deal of jealousy yet existing in reference to the conflicting views and aims of these leagues, and he judged it a wise thing for those connected with the present movement to avoid coming in contact or collision with any of the so-called leagues. The primary object of the present movement should be to get a railway to the Ovens and the Murray .

There were several thousands of bushels of wheat lying on the banks of the Murray at present which could not be brought down in consequence of the state of the river. He would conclude his remarks by moving the following resolution :- "That, in the opinion of this meeting, it is desirable that a Melbourne committee be formed of gentlemen interested in the prosperity of the Ovens and Murray districts, with the view of securing railway extension from Melbourne to the Upper Murray."

Mr Martin, in seconding the resolution, said it. was high time to get a railway up in those districts, for residents were now of opinion that it was impossible to get roads. He thought that tho district was worse off in that respect now than it was fifteen years ago. The Ovens and Murray districts had special claims for railway extension. All other districts were at least within a reasonable distance of railway termini; but those were fully 200 miles from Melbourne . The Sydney Government were making rapid progress with the line from Sydney into the Riverina country. If our line is completed, there will be laid open for direct communication with Melbourne the whole of the Upper Murray and the Riverina country. All other proposed lines are comparatively limited in their scope and consequences to this one. They open up no new trade with- other colonies, while this one will. Should the Sydney Government determine to meet our line, then Melbourne must perforce become the head-quarters of the mail service. Getting, as she does, the news before Sydney , the mails will be sent overland by rail, and not per steamer as now. The present railway scheme, and the building of the graving dock at Williamstown were, therefore, connected most strangely and yet most legitimately.'

Mr J C H Ogier thought that there should be direct railway communication between Melbourne and Sydney, and the formation of the present line would be an important step towards the fulfilment of such a scheme. He moved-"That the following gentlemen form the committee mentioned in the first resolution, viz. :- Messrs D P Keogh,. Bruce, Morrish, Martin, Ogier, Thompson, Wm M'Ewen, H Henty, Hanna, Cleeland, T Y Anderson, Welshman, Littlewood, Mason, and Witt, with power to add to their number."

Mr Morrish having seconded the resolution, the proceedings terminated with a vote of thanks to the chairman.


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