|Newspaper Title||The Newcastle Chronicle and Hunter River District News (NSW : 1859 - 1866)|
|Trove Title||Civilisation; or, Dark Scenes in Australia. A Tale Founded on Fact|
CIVILISATION ; O^DARK SCENES IN.AUSTI&'UA. A TALE FOUNDED ON FACT.
.By Ettienne— Author of 'Rough Yarns from the Bush,' ' Colonial Sketches,' ' Life tX the South.'
An important ctuSression, inasmuch as it conoerns our principal character. She gives up every friendlier father, and her mother, And, leaving every other, must cling to him through life ; Gives up the) little sister and dear good natured brother, And goes away, for what? to be a stranger's wife.
. .-.i . . Unpublished, M. S. S. Winter came— winter inL Nojrthern Aus tralia ; there was little I'p.ib'otijken its ap proach, for the birdasangn's'Swecitly. and the trees wore as bright foliage ns-'^jretofore, only in tho mornings aud evenings it was just cold enough to make fires agreeable; but beyond this none could tell it was win ter time. Some little ehange had taken plaoe in the aspect of the station of Terim bool ; every thing was looking more, as though the hands of some good biishman had been employed in rendering it some thing like what one sees in civilisation, and now muoh greater changes .were to take, plaoe there ; but we must not anticipate, and will, with the reader's permission, make a somewhat important digression, whioh is needful to unravel the threads of our story, Charles and Edward Wilson .were emi grants to the Australian ' colonies, in the year 1851, thnt period when the living tide was rushing hither to try their fortunes at gold mining. Their parents oeoupied a humble position as farmers in Snssex, and blessed with a somewhat largo progeny, oflerod few objections to the departure of: thoir elder sons, su the brothers set sail for Sydney in an Alteak built ship, which, after tossing about on the seas for fully four months, at length brought them safely to thoir destination. The Turon and Tamba roora gold-Holds wore at this time engross ing publio attention, and to these spots .the brothers departed shortly after landing. ' Small beginnings ofcen make large end ings' was a proverb applicable to their oase, for the sum invested by them in sinking, a shaft, though small, Was the whole they pos sessed, and the said shaft not only proved
I oimuierative, but turned into their hands i a sum sufficiently large to purchase a small station in the Liverpool Plains district; but owing to some disease among their stock, added to numerous losses from cattle steal ers *, they did not succeed, and therefore resolved to sell off and proceed to the far north, where they had heard ample scope was afforded to all who chose to go hither and take up new runs. Their plans of ac tion wore successful; the firm of M — and Co. having sold off the property nt Liver pool Plains and handed over the proceeds to 'them. Their expedition' to the north wasalBo (as we have already shown) crowned with suocess, so they bad resolved to settle down at tho north ; and. this brings us back to the point of digression. The two bro thers were married, but their wives yet lived in Sydney with their respective parents; it was their intention to bring them shortly to the netv station when things were in proper order for their reception, for they could not bear that any delicate female should be compelled to endure the hardships which they had done ;? they were naturally kind and indulgent husbands, and, having ample funds at their disposal, resolved nothing should be wanting in that far interior which conduce to their comfort; so there were great preparations for the reception 'of these ladies, such chopping down of big trees and splitting them into slabs, such adzing, and bringing sleepers and wall plates to perfec tion, and as for Old Mick, he was most busy of them all, for, as he remarked, ' a station looked like nothing without a wo man oh it;' and then there was the journey down to Gladstone with the dray for rations and things that were needed in that wilder ness;1 and tlien the letters — the bag full of letters which brought them tidings of all the doings in the great world ; papers whioh told of pome Bight Honourable member who was defeated in the contest for Legisla tive honours by a majority of 10 who had voted for some other equally honourable gentleman, and beside these there were re ports of births, death, and marriages, of fires, accidents, and hairbreadth escapes, the whole catalogue winding up with adver tisements from Professor Gullaway's last new care, effected by his miraculous pills, to Professor Browne's infallible specific for improving the complexion and keeping the hair in its place, preventing baldness, &c. Ah ! it was pleasure when that came ; and then Charles and Edward opened the. budget and read it of an evening for the benefit of ' all hauds.' ' There was good news from afar, and this was no less than the follow ing;— They had been married more than twelvemonths, and as a natural consequence had lapsed into the dream land of matri mony ; but they were now awakened from such ideal state oi existence to the reality of there being born unto them two beauti ful infants, with the universal squall and those other insufferable annoyances to which babies are naturally heirs. Blessed single
days for ever gone, yielded now to the chain and thrall of matrimony, ye will come again no more ; now there are more mouths to feed, more clothes to purchase, nurses to provide, doctors to pay, and the whole train of other payments and ills that are the at tendants of marriage, for then tbe husband has no rights, no privileges in his own house, his footstep is too heavy now, his cough annoys the little stranger, he must be mute as a mouse and submit without grumbling to sleepless nights, and wet sheets and carpets to match just to please that little tyrant, the baby; f'oi'.Ae is the real mnstar now, and a husband's power is but a myth. What mother is there that dees not feel proud of her baby, and in her heart thinks — nay, is sure of it— there never was, nor ever will be, such another like him in the world. Such a beautiful child (so the gin-taking nurse says), quite his father's eyes, . mother's nose (especially if it be a pug), and such an artless smile always play ing about his lips. And whenlhe grows tip, oh I he'll be so clever ; just like his fa ther to a hair ; a perfeot chip of the old one ; and does not the father think, when almost distracted with that infant's squalling, there never was, nor ever will be, suoh a little d — 1 in the world, and unable to obtain rest, he rises and rushes' from his bed into the open air. Poor Jerrold was right iu his pic tures of life in the Caudle family, for no matter how loving any woman may be at any other time, on the important occasion referred to she appears quite changed, and may bo compared to a bottle of. gingerbeer well shaken up, which takes some abort time till the froth evaporates from the top, and it resumes its wanted appearance. : But such are matrimonial joys, and those who share its sweets must bear its sours.,^, Oh ! ye. old baohelors who have readhtn that period when the fire of love has burned low in your hearts and affeotions, and kindness holds no place there, will ye not feel proud of the author of this, and bless him for thus publioly bringing forth a few of the bitter curses of matrimony ? Oh ! .ye old maids who have escaped this awful snare, whose £ 8. d. is yet untouohed, whose hair is whitened by virtue, whose soul shudders whilst contemplating what might have been your lot if you had uooepted one among the many thousand offers you had reooived in your youth, do ye not feel gratified at this expose of these few soenes which ocour in the. life of the wedded one. ' Pardon us, reader for the digression ; what would Old Miok say to us if he read it ? (that is if he 'sould read it) why, he'd say it was all right, but, to use a colonial term, would call it ' ola'ther ;' so we'll een depart for the sta tion at whioh we left our two settlers niak airangoments for the receptiou of their wives. There was no annoyance there from babies, nor likely to be, for iu her present state Mrs, Wilson could not be moved from Sydney (so the letter said), so, after all, it was settled they should join their husbands in a few months time, when every * Tho Liverpool Plains district was nt one tlmo noto rious for th li gentry, hut tho vigilance of efficient police Iim reudared their .dislioaett actions of rare occurrence,
thing would be ''ship sljape'^and'iii propei order for their reception. That night puns, ink, and paper were in greater demand than ever they ;had been before ; even Old Mick came to Mr. Charles and requested the loan of ' a bit of paper and an antelope to write a letter.' His master was astonished at the request; and begged to know what on earth he could want it for, or to whom when written he would send it? 'It's jest to request the' mistress to look out a young gal as sarvant and bring her up here, (here's a tarnation sight on 'em a kiiooking about Sydney with babies on their arme, and I fancy that 'if some on 'em was here we might strike up a bit of a mateh, for what matters, my beingo!d,aint an old man as good as some young fellers, eh ? uiut I an ' hauld hand' as has been here these years ; I sea it wilh's much pride as if I were Captain Cook my self, and asides I feels lonely somehow when I'm tailing them cattle. I often thinks upon my life, and believes as how some gal as coutd have a bit of reflection1 for a poor old critter like myself would make a vast diff rence in me; I know I'm worthy on it/ I'knows that, still, taint to sayr- ;but, sir, if so be as you'd jest write the letter or mention in yourn to the misses it'll 'blige me much, likewise if the gal will send an swer as she'll come it would be nice ; one thing, our chaps has often talked about get ting a young gal to cook for tbe mens1 hut; my word, that would be nice.' Charles ac quiesced in Old Mick's request by adding in a postscript to the letter to his wife, ' if you can hire two pretty decent girls as ser vants bring them with you up here, one of my men seems mad to get a wife ;' and so these letters were signed, sealed, and deli vered into the hands of the bullock ^driver, who departed next day for the town'.'-'./v^nd then they began to long for answers to i these letters, even before they were well^under weigb, and they might have gono t&^sleep and forgottou there were such perso^'-jaVf blacks in the world had it not beeu fqrithe. following circumstances— but what follows' will need a fresh chapter. . ; ?-' ! (To be Continued.) ;