Last modified on 20 November 2015, at 22:01

Alexandra Times at KellyGang 28/4/1877 (2)

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A public meeting was held on Wednesday evening, at Hogan's Hotel, Doon, to hear Mr Whitelaw. One of the candidates for Delatite, Mr O'Leary, had called a meeting at the same time and place. By arrangement, Mr Whitelaw spoke first, Mr Brown being voted to the chair.

Mr Whitelaw, after paying Mr O'Leary a compliment, in allowing him to speak first, and having dwelt for a short time in describing the beautiful scenery of the district, spoke of the future, when the railway from Tallarook to Mansfield via Doon would be completed - how the Melbourne merchant princes, with their wives and families, could seek rest, retirement, and seclusion amidst the "banks and braes of bonnie Doon." It was no foolish imaging, as few lines could show a better prospect of payable results than the one to which he had alluded. As a matter of fact, the first section of the line as far as Yea had been promised by Mr Woods, the Minister of Railways, but that gentleman had been turned out of office to make room for Sir James M Culloch and 'is Hobson's Bay Railway swindle. They must not imagine that the grand Education Act was absolutely safe; ministers of all denominations had given it the cold shoulder, and it was only when public opinion run high in its favor. that they were induced to give up their opposition.

The teacher of bye gone days was a kind of body-servant to the parson and priest-ring the bell, saddle the horse, pin on the gown, lead the singing in church, were considered requisites, but now the teacher was considered as good. and useful a man as the clergyman, and, by some people, even more valuable. The one supplied reading, writing, and arithmetic - useful things in the world - whilst the other supplied an occasional smell of fire and brim stone, also very useful. However, he believed with Robert Burns that:-

 "The fear o' hell's the hangman's whip

To hand the wretch in order;

Where'er you find your honor grip,

Let that aye be your border,

On any day."

He was no believer in Sir James MCulloch, and was opposed to his general policy. The candidate after going over the whole Liberal programme, answered a number of questions, and received as vote of thanks, which was moved by Mr Charles M'Donald, seconded by Mr King.

A vote of thanks to the Chairman brought the meeting to a close, after which a fresh chairman was appointed and Mr O'Leary, addressed the electors of Delatite.


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