Australian Town and Country Journal at KellyGang 7/9/1872 (4)

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Mr Watson, I was informed, had by this means received intelligence of the death of his brother in England almost immediately after the event occurred, and before news could possibly have reached here. Many of the Kiandra people are also believers in Spiritualism, and I have met many respectable and sincere people here who have unbounded faith in Spiritualism; and I heard a rumour that a council of believers and unbelievers will shortly be hold; and that the gentlemen composing it will be of unimpeachable reputation.

The distance from Walwa to the next station is about six miles. The road is very good, and very pleasant if travellers only take care, and not take the best beaten, track about a mile from Mr Watson's which leads to the deserted saw-pit six miles distant in the mountains. I followed the track for four or five miles before I discovered my mistake. With a tired horse this was the more annoying. Mr Charles M'Kenzie's station was called Jingellic, in Victoria, and opposite to Mr. Smithwick's is the station referred to. Mr M'Kenzie's house is surrounded with trees with a good garden in front. For about mile below Jingellic a gentleman accompanied, an showed me a crossing where I again forded the Murray. I continued my journey past a large number of lagoons on the Murray flats. Thes lagoons are a prominent feature along the river banks throughout the whole course of the Murray. The iguanas here were very large und numerous; many of them being fully three feet in length and of proportionate thickness. They are said to be harmless, and' excellent eating; perhaps my Murray friend will take the hint and try them. They are very fat now.

Eight miles along these flats and the traveller arrives at the Border Inn, well kept by Mrs J Strachan. Her place, I think, is called Marraket. There is a very fine vineyard and orchard on the banks of the river below the house, and I was glad to eat of the grapes of the vineyard on that hot summer's day.

A number of free selections are below Strachan's Inn. The river winds and forms semi-circles about here. Almost, every bend consisting of a rich alluvial deposit is taken up under the Robertson Land Act. It was quite dark when I got to the next station called Talmalmo. This in a valuable property about sixty miles above Albury. From a station it has merged into an estate of upwards of 4000 acres of freehold, consisting of nine flats, alluvial deposits, and undulating hills. The frontage of Talmalmo to the Murray is about ten miles. The residence of Robert Smithwick, Esq., the owner of the estate, is on the bank of the Murray, overlooking the broad stream. A boat is kept by Mr Smithwick, and not the least part of the pleasure of the hospitable family, and their visitors is boating and fishing, often catching the famous Murray cod, porch, &c.

After leaving Mr Smithwiok's to go to Albury I passed a few free selections, and the Murray ranges presented some grand rugged scenes. Ten miles beyond Talmalmo theDora Dora is reached. This is a sheep station, the property of Mr Aird. A number of other free selections, a country inn, and a high range relieve the monotony of a second stage of fifteen miles from Dora Doro, and the Victoria Inn, under the management of Mr B Vincent, at the Village of Wagra, concluded a long day o journey, under the hot Australian sun. A swim in the Murray made sleep more refreshing, and by daylight I was again in the saddle. The road continued along the River banks. About six miles from Vincent's we came upon some nice open country at the station of Mr Andrew Hore. Four miles beyond this is Cumberoona , a splendid station owned by Mr John Hore. Another four miles and the main southern road appears at a small township called Bowna, better known ns the Twelve-mile Greek, that being the distance from Albury.

Here we felt in good humour for the breakfast after our long ride of fourteen or fifteen miles, so called at Hest's Chant's and were properly treated to not only the good things in his house, but also to a visit to his fine vineyard, where the grapes suffered considerably from the attack we made on them.

Bowna has a well conducted Public School, under the charge of a good teacher, Mr J Carpenter. The children were well behaved, neat and clean. Their proficiency in grammar, arithmetic and geography was spoken highly of by the inspector at the last examination. There is also a Roman Catholic school held in the church which is of brick. This school is under the charge of Mr O'Sullivan. A store and post-office is carried on by Mr J C Middleton.

The road from Twelve-mile Creek to Albury is a pleasant one. It is pleasant because there are several of the smiling homesteads 'we read about,' with gardens and vineyards on the roadside. About six miles from Albury we passed the fine house, grounds and vineyards of James Day, Esq., JP. A little beyond a large, well-designed Public School called the Thurgoona, under the charge of an excellent head master, Mr W H Acheson. The average attendance is nearly seventy pupils. On the opposite side of the hill a brick church is seen, more farms and vineyards and Albury at length appears.


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