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Burns,. Pfillp & Company ^ LIMITED. Directors: J A M E S B U R N S , Chairman, Sydney. ADAM F O R S Y T H , Sydney. M. D. M c E A C H A R N , Melbourne. J A M E S F O R S Y T H , Brisbane. D. P A T I E N C E , Townsville. J . T. W A L K E R , Sydney. Secretary: R. J . N O S W O R T H Y .

Branch Inspeetoe : P . G. BLACK.

Head Office: SYDNEY, N.S.W., 10 BRIDGE ST. Bfanehes: Queensland

BoWEN BRISBANE CAIRNS CHARTERS TOWERS CoOKTOWN NORMANTON THURSDAY ISLAND TOWNSVILLE ESPERANCE FREMANTLE GERALDTON P O R T MORESBY . . . SAMARAI VILA

...

NUKUALOFA

J O H N B L A I N E , Manager. A. A. S M I T H J. HANSFORD F . CASELEY W. H . M O N T G O M E R I E , , T. C. A M S D E N D. C. B R O M L E Y D. P A T I E N C E

Western Australia

S. R. B A L D I N G H . E. C A M P B E L L ,, A. H . MOUNTAIN „

British New Guinea W. H . GORS C. A R B O U I N . New Hebrides W. T A N N E R Tonga H. J. THOMPSON

„ ,,

A G E N C I E S T H R O U G H O U T AUSTRALASIA A N D T H E EAST. Managing Agents in Australia of the N I P P O N YUSEN KAISHA Japanese Mail Steamers.

Imperial

Managing Agents in Australia of the CANADIAN-AUSTRALIAN ROYAL M A I L

S.S. Co., L T D . , and Canadian-Pacific Railway. Agents, at various P o r t s , of t h e AUSTRALASIAN U N I T E D STEAM NAVIGATION CO., L T D .

Agents, at various Ports, of the B R I T I S H INDIA STEAM NAVIGATION C O .

Agents, at various Ports, of MCILWRAITH, MCEACHARN cfc Co., L T D . , Line of Steamers. E t c . , etc., etc. B u r n s , P h i l p &, C o m p a n y ' s , L i m i t e d , ISLAND LINE O F S T E A M E R S , r u n n i n g t o British a n d G e r m a n N e w G u i n e a , N e w B r i t a i n , S o l o m o n s , N e w H e b r i d e s , N o r f o l k I s l a n d a n d o t h e r I s l a n d s In t h e Pacific.

Passengers and Cargo Booked to all parts of the World. Island business of every kind transacted.


Advertisements.

Danaflian-flustralian R°uai man ma .

BETWEEN

SYDNEY a n d VANCOUVER, via Wellington, Suva, Honolulu AND Victoria, In connection with the

Canadian Pacific Railway. T h e magnificent steamers, AORANGI, MIOWERA, WARRIMOO, Sailing every 4 weeks. Passengers booked to all parts of Canada, United States, United Kingdom and Continent of Europe. Round the World Tickets issued to London, via Canada, returning via Suez Canal. B U R N S , P H I L P & CO., Ltd., Sydney, Managing Agents.

*

TRAVEL BY

M

The Splendid Passenger Steamships (WODONOA, ARAMAC, ARAWATTA, PAROO, etc,, etc.),

A. U.

OF THE

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UNRIVALLED TABLE and every convenience.

Co., Ltd.

Regular and frequent Services to all Australian Ports.


Advertisement.

THE

NORTH QUEENSLAND

FIRE)

E CO., LTD.

(MARINE)

Authorised Capital, £250,000; Subscribed Capital, £114,000.

Marine Risks covered to all parts of the World. Wool covered from Sheep's back to London.

Head

Office : S Y D N K Y . Directors;

JAMES BURNS, Chairman. JOHN SEE, M.L.A., J. MACPHERSON, A. FORSYTH, F. W. WALEY. General M a n a g e r :

Secretary;

CHARLES DANVERS.

T. J. WATTERS.

Branches a n d A g e n c i e s :

Townsville Brisbane Rockhampton Maryborough All North Q'land Ports

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Hobart Launceston London New York Manila Hiogo


HANDBOOK OF I N F O R M A T I O N FOR

Western Pacific Islands ISSUED BY

Burns, Philp & Company, Limited, SYDNEY,

Merchants, Steamship Owners and Agents.

1899

SYDNEY : J O H N ANDREW &. CO., January. iSgq.

PRINTERS.


CONTENTS.

Page

5, 6 7-9 10-34 35-40 45-60 61-67 75-97 99-108 109

LORD H O W E NORFOLK N E W HEBRIDES BANKS . . . SOLOMONS SANTA CRUZ BRITISH N E W GUINEA N E W BRITAIN H I N T S TO PHOTOGRAPHERS

ILLUSTRATIONS. LORD H O W E ISLAND . . .

...

...

...

KINGSTON, NORFOLK ISLAND

...

...

...

7

P I N E A V E N U E , NORFOLK ISLAND . . . CORAL AT L O W W A T E R , ANEITYUM ISLAND VOLCANO ... ...

... ... ...

... ... ...

9 13 15

H O T SPRING, S U L P H U R B A Y , TANNA MISSION STATION ... ... PORT VILA ... ...

... ... ...

... ... ...

16 17 19

A. N . H .

Co.'s

STORES, P O R T V I L A . . .

(i

...

...

20

R U E DE COMMERCE, P O R T V I L A

...

...

...

21

P I C K I N G COFFEE, P O R T V I L A

...

...

...

23

H . M . S . " R O Y A L I S T " O N THE N E W H E B R I D E S STATION D R . LAMB'S HOSPITAL, AMBRYM ... ... N A T I V E DWELLING H O U S E ON AOBA ...

... ... ...

26 27 31

WATERFALL, L A K E R E R E , AURORA, N E W H E B R I D E S ITHUMA R I V E R , ANEITYUM ... ... COCOANUT T R E E ... ... ...

... ... ...

32 34 37

BANANA, M R . CHEVILLARD'S PLANTATION, V I L A . . . SIMBO, SOLOMONS ... ... ... REPOSITORY FOR H E A D - H U N T E R S ' T R O P H I E S , SIMBO

... ... ...

40 4fi 48

N A T I V E H O U S E , SOLOMONS C H I E F ' S TOMB, R U B I A N A

... ...

... ...

49 50

R U B I A N A N A T I V E , SOLOMONS

... ...

...

...

...

51

CANOE H O U S E , R U B I A N A , SOLOMONS GAVOTU, SOLOMONS . . . ... GUADALCANAR, SOLOMONS ...

... ... ...

... ... ...

53 57 58

CAPTAIN W .

...

..

59

R E E F ISLAND NATIVES AND CANOE SANTA CRUZ ... ...

P O P E ' S STATION, AOLA, SOLOMONS

... ..

... ...

61 63

N A T I V E OF SANTA CRUZ SANTA CRUZ H O U S E . . .

... ...

... ...

65 66

GEYSER, FERGUSON ISLAND, N E W G U I N E A

...

...

79

P O R T MORESBY, N E W G U I N E A

...

...

80

... ... ...

VILLAGE, P O R T MORESBY, N E W G U I N E A

...

...

81

TRADING CANOE, N E W G U I N E A NATIVE HOUSE, N E W GUINEA

... ...

... ...

... ...

84 86

SAMARAI, N E W G U I N E A

...

...

...

90

SARIBA, N E W G U I N E A T R E E H O U S E , N E W GUINEA

.., ...

... ...

... ...

92 96

M I S S I O N STATION OF THE SACRED H E A R T , HERBERTSHOHE, N . B . B E E H I V E ROCK, M A T U P I , N E W B R I T A I N ... ...

101 104

MAKING F I S H TRAPS, N E W BRITAIN

...

...

106

M I O K O D U K E OF YORK, N E W B R I T A I N

...

...

108


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Western Pacific Islands BY THE

ISLAND LINE OF STEAMERS OF

BURNS, PHILP & COMPANY, LIMITED.

Head Office: 10 BRIDGE ST., SYDNEY.

Lord Howe, Norfolk, New Hebrides, Banks, Solomon, Santa Cruz, British & German New Guinea, And New Britain.

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Messrs- Burns, Philp & Company's Steamer Titus alongside Marau Sound, Solomon Islands.


BURNS, PHILP & COMPANY'S (Ltd.)

WESTERN

PACIFIC BY

ISLANDS

THE

I s l a n d L i n e of

Steamers

BURNS, PHILP & COMPANY,

LORD H O W E

LIMITED.

ISLAND.

EAVING Sydney, two days' sail brings us within sight of the twin peaks of Lord Howe Island, Mount (lower and Mount Lidgbird. The island was discovered by Lieut. Ball in 1788, when that officer was in charge of the " Supply," in the early days of the Australian settlement. A good deal of the land is fertile, and several families live on the island in comfort. It is, as far as government is concerned, a part of New South Wales, being in the King electorate, which at the present time (1898) returns the Premier. Leaving here, the next point of call is the historic and beautiful Norfolk Island ; but just after leaving Lord Howe one gets a glimpse away to the south-east of that remarkable geographical feature, Ball's Pyramid. This is a rocky peak, rising abruptly to a height of

ISLAND LINE OF STEAMERS.


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BURNS, PHILP & COMPANY'S (Ltd.)

nearly 2000 feet. It is visible for a very great distance, and the effect of the rising or setting sun glittering on the stately peak is very beautiful

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NORFOLK ISLAND is slightly under iooo miles to the north-east of Sydney. It was discovered by Cook in 1774. A few years later, Botany Bay was sanctioned as a convict settlement, and the officers in charge

10 Bridge Street, Sydney.


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subsequently utilised this picturesque and fertile island as a penal station. " A perfect image of Paradise," was the description then given of it by a military officer ; but as a convict settlement it was considered too far from the seat of government at Botany Bay, and was abandoned. Early in the present century, however, it was re-established as a penal station for doubly-convicted or specially degraded felons. Barracks, prisons and stores were erected, bridges and rough piers were built, avenues of pines were planted, and these are all there to-day, some falling to decay, and some in full preservation, to remind the visitor of this black page in the island's history. The awful nature of some of the misdeeds perpetrated will never be fully revealed perhaps. Suffice that enough was conveyed to the Imperial authorities to induce them, about the close of the first half of the century, to once again break up the settlement. Then began a new era for the island. It happened that about that time the condition of the descendants of the mutineers of the " Bounty" on Pitcairn Island was attracting attention. Pitcairn is little more than a barren rock, and there was grave danger of a water famine. It was then decided to transport the Pitcairners, their sheep, horses, pigs, and poultry, free of expense, to the abandoned convict settlement, and practically to hand over the island to them uncondition_ ally. Accordingly, on June 8th, 1856, 194 persons were landed on the island Many were not satisfied, however, and about 40 returned to Pitcairn. The rest remained on Norfolk, where they are to the present day, the population of 150 having meantime increased to about 500. The island is also the headquarters of the Church of England Melanesian Mission. They have erected a beautiful church as a memorial to Bishop Patteson (who was murdered in the Santa Cruz group in 1871) and several houses for the missioners and pupils. Native boys are brought here from the islands, and are instructed in the principles of religion, and after a course of a few years they are sent back to their homes to propagate the truths of Christianity. Norfolk Island is about five miles long and about two and a half miles broad. It contains about 9000 acres, and the soil is of the very richest. It is a succession of gentle hills and valleys clothed with the stately pine, and covered with the orange, the lemon the banana, and other semi-tropical fruits, and its whole appearance is that of a beautiful park. It maintains its present population with but the very smallest exertions on their part, and ten times the number could live in comfort and affluence within its boundaries. The anchorage is, unfortunately, rather bad, and in rough weather a boat is

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ISLAND LINE OF STEAMERS. only put off to a ship with difficulty. But the mails having been landed, and the cargo taken off or put on, as the case may be, our vessel is once more on her way bound for the New Hebrides.

M. V. Murphy.

Pine Avenue, Norfolk Island-more than a mile long.

10 Bridge Street, Sydney.


BURNS, PHILP & COMPANY'S (Ltd.)

New Hebrides. T H E early history of the New Hebrides dates back to a time when Captain Cook was yet unborn, and the Australian Continent unheard of. Unheard of, but not undreamt of, for it was the belief that a great southern continent existed, which led the Spaniards out on those voyages of discovery which resulted in the addition of most of the Hebrides, the Santa Cruz group, and the Solomon Islands to the map of the world. But the Spaniards, though they settled on the islands more than three hundred years ago, did not maintain their foothold ; and to-day, though the question of possession is still unsettled, the Spaniards are not even claimants. France and England are the rivals for possession, and the islands are at present under the dual control of those powers. The Hebrides lie in a N.W. and S.E. direction, and they stretch over about 700 miles of sea. Their most southerly point is only a week's sail from Sydney, and their history and situation seem alike to mark them out as future British possessions. When Lope Garcia de Castro came out as Spanish Governor of Peru, in 1564, he set about the building of two ships, which were to be sent out on a voyage of discovery. Scientists had assured him that far to the westward there must be an " Australian " or southern continent, whence, in all probability, Solomon had brought the gold and the jewels used for enriching his temple and palace at Jerusalem. The command of the expedition was given to a young man of twenty-six, named Alvaro Mendana de Meyra, a nephew of the Governor, and amongst the military officers on board was a young native of Portugal, called Pedro Hernandez de Quiros. Towards the end of 1567 the expedition sailed from Callao, in Peru, and after a voyage of eighty days land was sighted. This was one of the islands of the Solomon group, or, rather, Mendana then, for the first time, gave to the group that name From here they explored the various islands of the group, and subsequently they returned to Spain. Mendana believed that he had discovered the source of Solomon's wealth, and his great desire was to colonise the islands. But his uncle had meantime been recalled from Peru, and for five and twenty years Mendana had to wait until another of the family was installed in that position. This was the Marquis of Canete, and when he was appointed Viceroy he warmly upheld Mendana in his aims, and a colonising expedition was resolved upon. Married couples were enlisted to settle in the new land. Mendana was accompanied by his

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wife and her brother, and De Quiros again went with the expeditionâ&#x20AC;&#x201D; this time in the capacity of chief pilot. Four hundred souls comprised the party, and they embarked in four vessels on June the 16th, 1595. On September the 7th they sighted and named Santa Cruz, and Mendana, believing that he was in the Solomon group, decided to found his colony. He cast anchor in a harbour which he christened Graciosa Bay, and vigorously commenced the work of building his town. But fortune did not smile upon the infant colony. Mendana fell ill and died, his brother-in-law was murdered by the natives, and the command of the expedition fell upon Dona Isabel, the widow of the commander. Shortly afterwards it was decided to abandon the colony, and those of the members who had not already perished found their way back to Spain, or to Spanish possessions, in two ships, the other two having been lost. But De Quiros was not yet satisfied. He still believed in the existence of a great southern continent, and he repeatedly urged on the authorities the necessity of adding it to the Spanish possessions. At length he succeeded in his desires, and on December the 21st, 1605, two ships set out from Lima, the one in command of Quiros himself, the other of Luiz Vaez de Torres. On April 30th of the following year he sighted land, and, misled by its dimensions, he thought he had at length discovered the expected continent. He gave to the land the name of " Australia del Espiritu Santo," which modern geographers shortened down to Espiritu Santo, and colloquialism still further into Santo ; for the land was none else than the most northerly and largest of the islands now known as the New Hebrides group. They anchored in a harbour which Quiros called Vera Cruz, and the river which emptied itself into the bay he christened the Jordan. On this river he determined to found a New Jerusalem, but sickness and unfriendly natives induced the Spaniards once again to abandon, after a time, their settlement. Torres sailed westward, sighting Australia, and passing through the straits off Cape Yorke, which now bear his name. Quiros, under duress of a mutinous crew, sailed for South America, and he was fitting out still another expedition when death overtook him in 1616. For 150 years after this there was no attempt to explore the islands further, but in 1767 Captain Carteret touched, in the "Swallow," many of the islands which the Spaniards had already charted, and a year later De Bougainville, the French explorer, led an expedition to the same latitudes, and gave his name to the strip of water separating the two islands of Malekula and Santo. It was left to Captain Cook, however, to take up thoroughly the work ot the Spaniards. In his second

10 Bridge Street, Sydney.


BURNS, PHILP & COMPANY'S (Ltd.)

expedition of 1774, he touched at the islands, and gave them the name they bear to-day—the New Hebrides. On that same voyage the great navigator discovered New Caledonia and the Isle of Pines, and it cannot be but a source of regret to every Briton that these valuable possessions have been allowed to pass from English to French control. So it is, however, for in 1853 the French flag was hoisted on the larger island without a word of protest. Those were the days, however, when Colonial possessions were regarded by English statesmen as something in the nature of an encumbrance. But times have changed, and to-day England recognises, and the Continental powers recognise it even more clearly, that the colonies are a source of strength to the mother country. It is a fact which requires to be constantly borne in mind ; and borne in mind, too, especially in connection with this New Hebrides group. For as New Caledonia had gone, so there was, a dozen years ago, a very grave danger of the New Hebrides going. A French landing was effected at Havannah Harbour, the French Flag was hoisted, and the troops were preparing for a permanent occupation, when the Australian Colonies sounded a note of warning. The note grew in volume until it became an outcry, and the French, under English pressure, were compelled to abandon their position. But the islands to-day are not—as they really should be— under English rule. They are under the dual control of France and England, and their ultimate destiny has yet to be decided, for the present control is unsatisfactory, and must come to an end. But how is it likely to be brought to an end ? Valuable the islands undoubtedly are, but they are not worth a war. In situation they belong to Australia, for their southern extremity is within a week of Sydney, and their northern point almost adjoins islands of which England has undisputed occupancy. The French, however, have rights in the island which cannot be ignored. A French chartered company has enormous land interests in the group—so large, indeed, that nobody (not even the company itself) knows exactly where they begin or end. This, indeed, is one of the causes of complaint against the existing control that such a company cannot be called upon to define its boundaries. Many Frenchmen, however, hold valuable lands in private ownership, and it is probable that in money value the French holdings exceed those of the English. Thanks to the Presbyterian Church, however, the English have established a strong moral claim to the islanders by virtue of the mission work done amongst them. Thus the interests are pretty fairly balanced at present. But if the islands are to come bloodlessly into the possession of Great Britain, the English must not alone maintain a

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balance ; they must obtain an enormously preponderating influence. And this can only be by the extension of the islands of various commercial enterprises. That there are inducements in this direction will be shown in the course of these few pages. The English connection with the group is maintained by Messrs. Burns, Philp & Company, Limited, who have the contract for the delivery of mails at all points from Lord Howe Island to Santa Cruz. Let us follow the mail steamer through the group ; her first port of call is Aneityum.

ANEITYUM. Aneityum is the most southerly island of the New Hebrides group. Captain D Urville, the French navigator, sailed partly round it in 1827 when en route from Hobart to the Santa Cruz Islands in search of the La Perouse expedition. There is a good landing on the S.W. side at Anelgauhat Harbour, where the Presbyterian mission station now is. The island is noted for its sandalwood, and as early as 1843 Captain Paddon formed an establishment here, and had several vessels engaged collecting the wood from the other islands. A Sydney sawmill company has at the present time a plant on the island. Only 40 miles from Aneityum, and visible from it, is the small but high island of

FUTUNA. It is only about 10 miles in circumference, and its native inhabitants had a reputation for ferocity in the early days of settlement in the group. Now, however, a Presbyterian missionary is established on Futuna, and the natives are civilised and friendly.

TANNA. The next point of call is Tannaâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;an island famous in these seas for its great volcano and for its fierce tribes of natives, whom the work of years is only now bringing to something like a state of civilisation. It was discovered by Captain Cook, on his third voyage, in 1794. "Towards the south-eastern extremity of it," says Foster, in his account of that voyage, "we discovered a volcano, of which we had really seen the fire at night. A column of heavy smoke rose up from time to time like a great tree whose crown gradually spread as it ascended." How true the description is to-day! When the air is still, the heavy column of smoke rises now as it did a century ago, and spreads itself as an

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15

umbrella as it rises. Every few minutes the roar of a fresh eruption is heard, and dense masses of smoke come up, accompanied by the molten lava and volcanic rock. It was so when Cook visited the spot a hundred years ago ; it was so, no doubt, for ages before, and the roar and the smoke will still continue long after the present generation has passed away. The forces at work within seem inexhaustible, and the navigator of future generations will use the fiery top of the mountain for his lighthouse and danger signal as did those who first sailed these waters. The circumference of the crater is about 600 feet, and the height of the

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volcano three thousand feet. It is comparatively easy of access, either from the mission station, at Port Resolution, or from Sulphur Bay, and many parties have approached it from those points and looked down into the boiling cauldron The roar of the coming eruption warns the sight-seer to draw back from the mouth, and also to be on his guard for falling lava or rocks. One well-known missionary in the group succeeded in lighting his cigar from a piece of the molten stone that fell close to his feet. Smoke issues from various points up the side of the mountain,

10 Bridge Street, Sydney.

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and into Sulphur Bay a stream of boiling water pours, in which the natives are accustomed to cook their food.

Hot Spring, Sulphur Bay, Tanna.

EROMANGA. A very short steam brings us to Dillon's Bay, in Eromanga, where the Rev. Hugh Robertson, at present one of the oldest missionaries in the island, has his station. When one has spent an afternoon at Mr. Robertson's place, he gathers some idea of the capabilities of the islands, particularly in the direction of producing oranges and lemons. The mission station is situated at a beautiful fresh-water creek, which empties itself into Dillon's Bay, close against the house. It is under the shadow of a hill famous in missionary historyâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;the Martyrs' Hill, as it is called, from the fact that the Rev. John Williams, the pioneer of missions in these seas, and his companion, Mr. James Harris, met their deaths on the shore at its base, while on its crest the Rev. Mr. Gordon and his wife were murdered a quarter of a century later. Williams, in his youth, was apprenticed to the ironmongery business, but his religious zeal was fired by frequent visits to the tabernacle at

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Moorfield, and he resolved to devote his life to mission work. In 1816 he went out to the South Seas, and after some good work in the eastern islands he turned, in 1839, to the Hebrides group. He arrived off the group in the middle of September, and under date, "Monday, i8tb," just after returning from a satisfactory meeting with the Tannese, he has the following entry in his diary:â&#x20AC;&#x201D;"This is a memorable dayâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;a day which will be transmitted to posterity ; and the record of the events which have this day transpired will exist after those who have taken an active part in them have retired into the shades of oblivion." This was the last sentence he ever wrote, though he dictated the doings of the

Mission Station. next day to his amanuensis. On the morning of September 20th, 1839, Mr. Williams and Mr. Harris landed. They went up the course of the creek for some distance, and were then set upon. Mr. Harris attempted to get back to the boat, which was in the creek, and Mr. Williams tried to reach the beach with the object, apparently, of swimming out to the ship. Both, however, were overtaken and clubbed to death. A flight of arrows was put into the boat, but fortunately nobody was struck, and an effort was made to bring the boat round to where the body of the missionary lay. The natives, however, kept up the assault on the boat while some

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of their number bore away the body. That was the last ever seen of the missionary martyr, and Captain Morgan, of the " Camden," seeing the futility of waiting longer and risking further lives, was reluctantly compelled to heave anchor. For five and twenty years the Eromangans were abandoned, and in 1864 the Rev. Mr. Gordon and his wife, who had taken up the work again, were killed on the hill overlooking the scene of the previous murder. Mr. Gordon was enticed along a path under an overhanging tree, when a native from the branches above cleft him with his axe. On the other side of the island the Rev. J. D. Gordon, a brother of the previous victim, was killed in 1872. But even this long list of martyrs was not sufficient to check the zeal for the cause, and very shortly after the death of the Rev. J. D. Gordon the Rev. Hugh Robertson and his young wife took up the work, and have since carried it on so successfully that the roll of victims, either clerical or lay, from native treachery may be said to be closed. The natives are practically all civilised ; a large proportion of them are christianised, and under Mr. Robertson's guidance they are learning to turn to good account the splendid soil of the island.

SANDWICH. Leaving Eromanga, with all its painful memories of the past, and all its great possibilities for the future, a run of something over 60 miles brings us to Sandwich Island. This was the name given to it by Captain Cook, the native name being Vate, or Efate (as it is now generally spelt). Sandwich is the most important island of the group, in that it contains the only township from Aneityum to Santa Cruz. A special reporter of The Arsus (Melbourne) who recently visited the group on behalf of that journal speaks thus of the place :â&#x20AC;&#x201D; " It is, perhaps, not generally known that the New Hebrides have a capital. 'Tis marked on no map nor entered in any geography. But it exists all the same, and its name is Vila. The undoubted capital of the group it is, not so much on account of its intrinsic importance as from the fact that it has no rival. Coming down on the ship one hears such frequent reference to Vila that he gains, perhaps, an exaggerated idea of its importance. We shall be able to buy this or to do that when we get to Vila ; to hear the news from the outside world, from which we have been cut off for a fortnight; to post letters home to anxious friends. Vila figures so largely in the conversation that the stranger becomes almost excited at the prospect of moving once again

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amidst the busy hum of men after fourteen days of the circumscribed society of shipboard. " Well, everything is what it is, large or small, good or bad, the

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philosophers tell us, not absolutely, but relatively, and relatively to the places at which we have hitherto called, Vila is important. One house, or, perhaps two, has been within the range of vision when we have dropped anchor hitherto, but as we plunge through the rip off Devil's Point and steam up Vila Harbour â&#x20AC;&#x201D; a harbour large enough for the evolutions of a fleet we have in view three or four pretentious-looking buildings straight ahead, while dotted around the coast-line in the immediate neighbourhood are some half-dozen or so smaller houses. It is a half-French, half-English settlement ; each English building has its

A. N. H . Co.'s Stores, Port Vila.

French counterpart, and the notices on the doors of the shops are in both languages. " T h e centre of the English colony at Vila is The A.N.H. Co.'s store, which bears, in letters to be read half-way down the bay, the sign "A.N.H. Co." Australasian New Hebrides Company the letters are intended to represent, Messrs. Burns, Philp & Company, Limited, being the managing agents for same. It is now nearly ten years since the company was first formed, and a great many of its original shareholders were then, as now, leading Melbourne business men. The employees

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are well-conditioned, in spite of those who say that the islands are unhealthy, and cheerful, notwithstanding those who aver that they are lonely. They preside over an establishment which, in the diversity of its contents, is simply a pocket edition of Whiteley's, embracing everything that the most fastidious could desire to eat or the most assthetic to wear. " I strolled along what appeared to me a jungle path, but what according to an inscription on one of the buildings, was the ' Rue de Commerce,' towards the French end of the settlement, past the French

Rue de Commerce, Port Vila.

store and the French hotel and one or two private houses. The store was much on the lines of the one I had left apparently, though not so large, while there was a distinct likeness between the hotel and those to be seen on worked-out Victorian goldfieldsâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;a long wooden building, having plenty of bottles on the bar shelves, with taking labels on the outside, but little inside. I conversed for a while with the son of the proprietor a young man with but an imperfect knowledge of English. It was, not, however, until I began to question him on the relative merits

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of Paris and Vila as social and artistic centres that I learned that he had never been nearer to France in his life than Noumea." Just a little further round from Vila, and we steam into Havannah Harbour - s o called from the warship in which Admiral Erskine entered the bay in 1849. I* is a magnificent stretch of water, almost completely land-locked, formed by the mainland of Sandwich on the south and east sides, and on the west and north sides by Deception and Protection Islands. The harbour is believed to be rich in the ordinary black-lip shell from which mother-o'pearl is made. Its only disadvantage is its great depth, and Admiral Erskine records that he anchored in 21 fathoms five or six miles from the entrance. The harbour has a historical in terest to Australians from the fact that it was the scene of the French landing in 1886, which, had it been tolerated at the time, would doubtless have resulted in the acquisition of the islands by France. For tunately, the Rev. Dr. Macdonald, who had been stationed at the harbour for many years, brought the matter strongly under the notice of the citizens of Melbourne. The result was that meetings were called in that city, public opinion was aroused, the Government of the Colony was moved to action, and the representations made to the Imperial Government led to the withdrawal of the French troops after about two years of a disastrous occupation. The natives about the mission station go in somewhat largely for the cultivation of arrowroot, another of the many products which can be cultivated with success in these islands. At Undine Bay, on the north side of the island, is one of the most extensive English coffee plantations in the Hebrides. It is owned by Messrs. Glisson and Wardlaw, and is thus described by the special reporter of The Argus : — " At Arthur's Leigh about 50 acres of coffee are in full bearing, and another 20 acres, or thereabouts, are coming on Half a ton to the acre is a very moderate yield, and this year it promises to be nearer 15 cwt. The extraordinarily wet season—over 70 inches of rain had fallen for the half-year—had greatly retarded the drying of the berry. The capacious drying sheds were, on the occasion of my visit, full to overflowing, the verandahs of the house were piled high, and as a last resort the spare rooms had been pressed into the service. The season's sample sent to Sydney had been pronounced by experts as of the highest grade, but the market was unsettled, and prices had not been fixed. The price ruling to-day is lower than it has been for years past, but putting it even on this low basis, it leaves a handsome margin for profit." Strictly speaking, the expanse of water known as Undine Bay is not a

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bay at all. It is formed by the mainland of Sandwich on the south, and by small islands lying to the north ; but the entrance is so wide and the exit so narrow that it has, when entered, the appearance of a bay.

Picking Coffee, Port Vila.

NGUNA. Across from Sandwich is the little island of Nguna, where there is a very nice mission house and quite an imposing church, at present under the direction of another of the veteran missionaries, the Rev Peter Milne.

MAI. Sailing due north, we are soon in sight of the striking three-hilled island called Mai, or Three Hills, the former being the native equivalent of the latter. It is somewhat curious that Cook gave the island the name of the Three Hills without any knowledge of the fact that the natives had already given it that name in their own language. There are, or at any

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rate there were formerly, three different languages spoken on the island, though which tribe gave the name originally to the land it is impossible now to tell. One of the most striking features, to the student of philology especially, about these islands is the number of different languages spoken. Not to mention dialects, there are more than a dozen totally distinct languages, in which not even the philologist can detect anything more than the faintest similarity, and if there is any word common to all the islands, it has in all probability been spread by the white people. Moving about amongst the natives almost anywhere on the group, one often hears the expression " Ita " used in the sense of an exhortation. " Ita ! " they will shout as a dozen boys take hold of a boat and push her off the beach into the sea. The expression is equivalent to some such phrase as the English " Now, all together," or " go strong ; " but if it is now a common word from A.neityum to Santo, that must be attributed rather to the work of the white trader than to any intercourse amongst the natives. The present little volume is not meant as a handbook on Hebridean philology, but while on the subject attention may be drawn to the peculiarity of the vowel sounds as compared with English. The island with which we are now dealing is pronounced Mah-e, the a being usually pronounced long, as ah, and the e pronounced as a. Thus the word given above is pronounced E-tah. But all this is rather in the nature of a digression The island of Mai is, like its fellows, fertile and luxurious, and an English trader has been settled there for some time. The natives are kindly, and have always traded freely with the whites settled amongst them.

TONGOA. Leaving Mai, we cross over towards the north-east to the little island of Tongoa, where there is a mission station, and where Mr. Alexander Cronstedt, one of the oldest settlers in the islands, is now living Mr. Cronstedt has carried on trading on a large scale for some years, and he is now going in extensively for coffee planting. He has a pleasantlysituated and comfortable house a short distance from the sandy beach ; and his establishment is a striking instance of the comforts which are attainable with prudence, energy and thrift, even in these distant lands.

EPI. A very short sail in a north-westerly direction brings us to Sakau, on the south end of the island o. Epi. Following the island round by its south-west coast we call at Voambi (where Mr. Hugh Roxburgh has an

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extensive plantation of coffee and bananas, and where the granadilla, the bread-fruit, and the plantain grow wild in luxuriance), and thence pass on to Ringdove Bay towards the north-western extremity. This is an extremely pretty sheet of water, and on its foreshore French planters and traders have established some very important holdings.

LAMENU. Looking across the bay, the small island of Lamenu is visible, on which a mission station, at present in charge of the Rev. Mr. Smaill, has been erected. Mr. Smaill has also another station at Nikaura, on the island of Epi, and he divides his time between the two.

LOPEVI. Passing from the one to the other, we are under the shadow of the conical volcano known as Lopevi, from whose apex a cloud of smoke is issuing. The volcano lay dormant for nearly a quarter of a century until June 3rd, 1898, when it broke out with a most appalling rumbling and crackling, and sent up volumes of smoke and lava which darkened the country for miles around. At Tongoa 30 or 40 miles away, clouds of black dust fell all the afternoon, covering the ground, and completely ruining flowers. So dark did it become that the fowls went to roost, and the general effect was so impressive that the natives were greatly moved, and even the white population, who, at that great distance, knew nothing of the seat of the outbreak, felt none too comfortable. However, the rumbling ceased late in the afternoon, and though smoke still issues constantly, there has been no fresh eruption. Viewed from the ship, the island appears to be a perfect cone or pyramid, rising directly out of the sea, on which it would be impossible for man to obtain a foothold. There is, however, a fringe of flat land towards the coast, and the island is inhabited by a small tribe of natives.

MALEKULA. Leaving Epi, the vessel may make for either Malekula or Ambrym, but the usual course is to head for the mission station at South-west Bay, on Malekula, where a Presbyterian mission station stands, passing en route the small group of islands known as the Maskelynes, which are just about to be brought under mission influence also. At the entrance to the bay is a small island of less than a mile in circumference, which rises abruptly out of the water to a fair height. It is well wooded and

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somewhat picturesque-looking, and is said to be the only piece of land in the group belonging to Her Majesty the Queen. The story of its acquisition is that it was generally used by the English man-of-war patrolling the New Hebrides for target practice. The vessel would sweep up the bay at full speed, and the guns would be directed on the little islet, which would receive the full charge The island was being rapidly " shivered " to pieces by the war vessels, when the chief entered a protest —though it was not clothed in official language • to the captain. " You shoot him plenty time, big fellow gun, bimeby land he altogether go," was the way the potentate resident on the adjacent land, who

H . M . S . Royalist on the New Hebrides Station.

claimed the ownership of the islet, drew attention to its steady diminution. Target practice could not be suspended because of the feelings of a native chief, and the captain promptly entered into negotiations for the purchase of the land outright. Ten sticks of tobacco was the price soon agreed upon, ana the land passed into the possession of Her Britannic Majesty, and received the official name of Royalist Island, but to the unregenerate it is now more commonly known as " Ten Stick Island." The west coast of Malekula is, so far, unoccupied by English settlers,

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and it is therefore necessary to retrace our steps, skirting its southerly end on our way to Ambrym, prior to making the numerous calls necessary either on, or just off, its eastern side.

AMBRYM. Ambrym is one of the most remarkable islands in the New Hebrides, its name being made famous hereabout by the possession of a striking natural feature in the shape of an active volcano, and of a noble charitable institution in the shape of a fully-equipped hospital. Some four or

Dr. Lamb's Hospital, Ambrym.

five years ago a tremendous eruption of the volcano occurred, not from the smoking crater, but at a new point. The lava poured down the sides of the mountainâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;over 3500 feet highâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;on its way to the sea, and the track which it made in the luxuriant vegetation is still visible. As it reached the sea in an immense volume, a column of steam and water was forced straight up to a height of several hundred feet. A man-of-war was at anchor close by at the time, and one of the officers obtained an admirable photograph of the phenomenon. The hospital is many miles from the burning mountain, but still not far enough to be out of its sphere of influence for mischief, and when the breeze is from the east a

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shower of fine, black dust falls continually, which renders the task of keeping clean the white walls of the hospital and the green lawns in front of it a very difficult one. The hospital marks such a really important step in the civilisation of these islands that the story of its foundation and working is worth telling at length in the words of the special reporter of The Argus: â&#x20AC;&#x201D; " Most of the Presbyterian missionaries on the islands are medical men, and when Dr. and Mrs. Lamb settled on Ambrym, in 1892, as missionaries, supported by the New Zealand church, the doctor entertained the idea of building a hospital. With funds raised principally in New Zealand and Scotland, the work was started in 1894, and the institution has now been fully equipped for some years. There is a ward for white men, and wards each for black men and black women, an operating room, a dispensary, and very comfortable nurses' quarters. It has been constructed with a special eye to coolness, and finished with particular regard for checking the spread of septic diseases. A portico, surmounted on solid-looking wooden pillars, gives the whole building quite a massive and imposing appearance. The native patients are treated entirely gratis, and they come from all parts of the group. The white patients are expected to pay for their medicine, and that and more they have always done. With English and French, Catholic and Protestant, Dr. and Mrs. Lamb were warm favourites, and when it became compulsory for Dr. Lamb to quit the group, his farewell testimonial was signed by everyone who could use a pen for scores of miles around. But that is another story. " A s was said, Dr. and Mrs. Lamb landed on Ambrym in 1892. They had just completed their house when, in 1893, came a fearful hurricane, which razed to the ground every building, native or otherwise, in the vicinity. They were driven for shelter to the foot of a huge banyan tree hard by, and there Mrs. Lamb tended her twin infant sons pending the erection of a temporary dwelling A new house was erected, and in the following year it was destroyed by fire. Nothing daunted, Dr. Lamb rebuilt the house, and almost immediately afterwards started the hospital. Everything appeared to be going smoothly at last, when early this year came the greatest blow. Dr. Lamb's health broke down, and a permanent change from the island climate became absolutely necessary. And so he went. And looking now from the steps of the splendid institution which he had just launched, one sees the white headstone that marks the resting-place of the two children beneath the giant banyan-tree which had offered them its unavailing shelter in their hour of need. The hospital is at present being carried on by Mr. Mansfield (Dr. Lamb's lay

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assistant) and Mrs. Mansfield, and Miss M'Lean, a Sydney trained nurse. A resident medical missioner will shortly be appointed, but Dr. Lamb will still retain a general superintendence. H e is at present practising in a country town in New South Wales, and the change, it is hoped, may effect a permanent improvement in his health. But when his epitaph does come to be written, if his last resting-place should be in these islands, no better line could be suggested than that which adorns the tomb of Sir Christopher Wren in St. Paul's Cathedral—' Si monumentum quseris, circumspice.' " Other white men are, in the words of Kipling, " breaking the road for the rest" at different places on Ambrym ; but after a call at Dip Point — a place which will be easily recognised by the sudden dip of the land—we make back for the eastern coast of Malekula. Next to Santo, this is the largest island of the group. It is over 50 miles in length, and lies in a N.W. and S.E. direction. Its inhabitants were originally very hostile, and in 1851 the first Bishop Selwyn had a narrow escape for his life. The Bishop, with a boat's crew, had landed to water, when they were surrounded by a hostile crowd, which cut them off from their boat. It is a remarkable instance of what can be done —even by unarmed men—by a display of coolness and bravery, that the men reached their boat in safety by simply obeying the Bishop's instruction to walk straight ahead in total disregard of the menaces of the savages. Next day the natives repented of their attack, and made overtures for peace, explaining that they had not recognised the Bishop, and that they had been badly treated by the last ship which had visited them. That was in the old days, of course, and a white boat's crew would to-day be safe in landing on any point on the island, provided they did or had done nothing to excite the hostility of the natives. Passing back to the south-east point, a splendid anchorage is to be found at Port Sandwich. It is probably one of the finest harbours in the group, with a splendid tract of country around it, and the only regrettable feature about it, from the British point of view, is that the land has already very largely passed into French hands. Skirting the east coast, we soon reach Port Stanley, another of the splendid harbours to lie found about the group. Here we have a succession of beautiful' little islands, clad in verdure and lying in opal seas, the fringe of stately palms along the shore presenting a lovely aspect from the ship, and recalling those "Summer isles of E d e n " of which the poet speaks. Uripiv, Rano, Wala and Vao are some of them. On most of them are white traders, and Catholic or Presbyterian missionaries are working on all of them.

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PENTECOST. Leaving these islands, we may cross Bougainville Strait—so called after the French explorer, who sailed through it in 1768—northward to the little island of MALO, or we may proceed easterly to Pentecost. When Bougainville first touched at Pentecost, he found the natives suffering from a skin disease which suggested leprosy, and he consequently called it Leper Island. It was, however, evidently a passing ailment, for no traces of it exist at the present day. The island is visited by the Melanesian (Church of England) missionaries, and though the natives are not unfriendly, they are not very civilised. Their villages are some distance inland, and when the writer visited one he was forcibly reminded of the peculiar customs prevalent in most of these islands with regard to the treatment of the dead—and particularly of the illustrious dead. A chief had died a few days before our visit, and, following the usual practice, his house, with the corpse inside, had been closed. There he would be allowed to remain till the processes of Nature had effected the dissolution of the body, and the house would be untouched until it had fallen down about the skeleton of its former master. It is a widelypractised custom in these islands, but one can readily understand that in a climate like this it is not pleasant to the European visitor, nor very healthy for either visitor or sojourner.

AOBA and AURORA. Before returning to our main track, something deserves to be said of one of two small islands to the north of Pentecost—Aoba and Aurora. So far there has been no striking difference of feature amongst the natives of the different islands. In the Aobans, however, we have a race totally distinct from any previously met. They are much lighter skinned, more regular in feature, and more pleasant in expression, than the other natives, and one has no difficulty in recognising one of the tribe whereever he meets one. They are, one would judge by their appearance, more closely connected with the natives of the Samoan group than with their immediate neighbours. Their expression suggests the Japanese somewhat, and one might be led into forming a high estimate of their disposition from a glance at their countenance. In this, however, he would greatly misjudge them, for though they are undoubtedly the handsomest people to be found in this division of the South Sea Islands, there is a concensus of testimony that they are the most treacherous

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Like all the other islanders, they are gradually being civilised, but even yet they view with jealousy any attempt of a white man to establish a settlement on their land, and a pioneer there would be by no means safe-

Native Dwelling House on Aoba.

MALO and TANGOA. Crossing back to Malo, we sail through the picturesque strait known as the Malo Pass, which separates the islands of Aure and Malo, and proceed to the park-like islet of Tangoa. Tangoa has an importance in the group quite disproportionate to its size, from the fact that it is the seat of a very important educational establishment under the control of the Presbyterian church. It is a training school whither the natives are brought from the other islands and given an educational course of three years in simple English subjects and in the truths of Christianity. The course completed, they are sent back to their native islands to assist in the work of Christianising the other natives. The idea seems an excellent one, for the native ought to be able to exercise an influence over his fellows greater than any stranger. The whole establishment is on quite the grand scale, including the principal's and the assistant's houses,

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the resident missionary's house, a school, and a church, and about 50 native houses. These last named are very different from the squalid dens dumped down promiscuously, to be seen in the average native village, and should do a great deal in themselves towards leading the natives to

Waterfall. Lakererej Aurora, New Hebrides.

a higher standard of living, as far as mere sanitary arrangements are concerned. The houses are constructed of native material and, to an extent, in the native fashion, but they are large and airy and, are set out symmetrically. The situation of the whole training school is a charming

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one, for the lawns slope away to the water's edge, and across the narrow strip of deep blue the green hills of Santo rise. In the work of reclaiming the natives from heathendom and savagery this institution should, in the years to come, play a large part.

ESPIRITU SANTO. Now we are at Espiritu Santo, which is so intimately associated with the very earliest history of these islands. It was at this island that De Quiros touched on his third expedition early in 1606; here he founded his ill-fated colony, and here to this day are to be found traces of the settlement then established. Following the eastern coast, about half way up we enter Hogg Harbour, where a mission station is established, and where good work is being done in reclaiming the land and in Christianising the savages. Then we sail up the eastern wall of Cape Quiros, round its point, and turn due south into what is really St. Philip's Bay, but what is now very generally known, in deference to the leaning of the natives for simple words, as Big Bay. It was here that Quiros landed and settled, or at any rate the balance of testimony seems to indicate that this was the spot. There is, however, no trace of a port in it corresponding to the one which he named Vera Cruz, and which he said " had room for a thousand ships." The western arm of the bay, constituted by the mainland of the island, is very much longer than the eastern arm, and it is probable that De Quiros took the bay as beginning at Cape Cumberland - the extreme northerly point of the island - and the harbour as beginning at a line drawn from Cape Quiros to the mainland. But, as a matter of fact, one cannot be said to have entered the bay until he is abeam of Cape Quiros. Not far from Cape Cumberland are several ruins of large buildings ; solid pillars of stone, detached portions of walls, and cemented pieces of masonry are to be found over a plain some two or three miles in extent. Some four or five miles away are the remains of another imposing building. The natives look upon these antiquities with a considerable amount of awe ; but there can be little doubt, though they are some distance from the River Jordan, that they are the relics of the Spanish expedition. It is a curious fact that the natives of Santo go in for the manufacture, on a small scale, of pottery, turning out a very neat sample of burnt earthenware, which is used for cooking and for other household purposes. They are the only natives in the group who turn their energies in this direction ; and, as there is nothing peculiar in the soil to induce them to engage in pottery making,

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a good deal of speculation has been indulged in as to whence they acquired the art. Two theories are advanced : the one is that they took it from the Spaniards in the days of the New Jerusalem, and have

Ithuma River, Aneityum.

passed it on from generation to generation since. Again, there is on the island a very ordinary species of wasp which constructs a rather elaborate clay nest. This nest is found to bear a very striking resemblance to the pottery turned out by the natives, and it has been suggested that the reasoning man has borrowed the idea from the instinctive worker. The theory is plausible enough, but, on the whole, it is more likely that the Spaniards were the original teachers. There is but one more call to make, on the extreme point of the island, and then we are done with New Hebrides group, and are en route for the Banks group.

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Banks Group. SANTA MARIA and VANUA LAVA. AFTER a few hours' steaming, we are in sight of SANTA MARIA, the most

southerly of the Banks group, and, passing on, we are soon abeam of VANUA LAVA and the little islet of Kakea. This latter affords a striking instance of the decay of the native population. It contains only about 21 square miles, but a few years ago it was thickly inhabited. To-day it has not a single member of its original tribe, the two or three that survived disease having "folded their tents, like the Arabs," and silently stolen away to throw in their lot with their friends on a neighbouring island. Kakea is now the absolute property of Captain Frank Whitford, whose intention it is to clear the island and lay it down in cocoanut trees for the manufacture of copra. Over 100,000 trees, it is estimated, can be planted in the area available, and a start has already been made on the mammoth undertaking. There is an anchorage off Vanua Lava, in Port Patteson—a port called after the judge of that name, and father of the missionary bishop who lost his life further north, at Nukapu, in 1871.

URIPARAPARA. PROCEEDING now in a direct line for SANTA CRUZ, we leave to the east

or west some little islands which deserve a word. The island of Uriparapara is one of them. It contains the remains of a German scientist of some note, who, in 1897, whilst conducting some investigations, was stricken with an illness and died. But the island has a peculiarity of formation which has led to the belief that it was once an active volcano, the entire side of which has been blown out by a tremendous eruption. Viewed from one aspect, Uriparapara appears a perfect cone, but as it is brought more abeam a huge indentation is noticed, which has all the appearance of having been artificially constructed, or of having—as is generally supposed—been formed by a convulsion of Nature. There is now a sheltered anchorage for small craft in this indentation, which, from its supposed origin, is known as " The Crater."

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TORRES GROUP. To the westward of our course lie the bunch of little islands known as the Torres group, called after the second in command of De Quiros' last expedition, who sighted them on his return journey after the breaking up of the Spanish colony.

TUCOPIA. Some distance to the eastward is the lovely little island of Tucopia, which has both a historical and an ethnological interest. A French expedition, under La Perouse, was organised in 1788 to explore these islands. It left Sydney towards the end of that year, and vanished from human ken. No trace of it was discovered until 1828, when on the island of Tucopia pieces of wreckage were found, which were clearly identified as belonging to the gallant Frenchman's ships. Inquiries elicited that they had been obtained years before from Vanikoro, more than 400 miles to the north. This island was then visited, and unmistakeable signs were forthcoming that here the vessel had met her doom. Within quite recent years the anchor and other iron belonging to the ship were discovered, and these are now in the Paris Museumâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;the sole memorials of a body of brave men and of an ill-fated expedition. The present inhabitants of Tucopia are most interesting, in that they bear no resemblance to the people of the Hebrides, Banks, or Santa Cruz groups. In appearance they suggest somewhat the Samoans and the Maoris. Some interesting facts in connection with them have just been contributed to the Sydney Morning Herald by an officer of H.M.S " Mohawk," which has completed a tour of these islands, and has established a British protectorate over the whole of them. The officer says that the island, from its natural features gives colour to the Darwinian idea of a submerged continent. It contains about 800 people, who are not like the ordinary kanaka, woolly-haired and stunted in stature. " They are," he proceeds, " gigantic in stature; one we measured was 6 feet 10 inches; and the women are proportionate. The men have long, straight hair, which they dye a flaxen colour, and which in thick folds hangs over their copper-tinted shoulders. The women, on the contrary, have their hair cut short. They may be related to the Samoans or the Maoris, but they certainly differ so much from the Melanesian as to make their history most interesting. Strange to say, also, they have no weapons of defence at all A remarkable law amongst them is that they marry only once, the superstition being that if a married man or

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woman dies, no matter how many children there may be, the deceased spirit has gone ahead, and is waiting for the other half." Then our long and picturesque journey is completed. " Up anchor!" again is the word, and we are homeward bound by the track we came. The traveller who has completed this tour cannot but have had a pleasurable trip, and a trip mentally profitable. But also, he must have had a journey which offers him some food for reflection. As to the pleasure, even the most bilious must enjoy the exquisite pleasures of a cruise " o n from island unto island" in a climate that knows no winter, and where the only landings are on emerald patches set in a sea of opal. The true beauty of the ocean is not known to one who has not seen it in tropical regions. Sit on the deck of a vessel and watch the deep, azure waters breaking on some coral reef, and you will see a blending of opal and blue, and lighter blue softening into a grey and ending in a feathery white foam, which constitutes a picture worth coming all the way to see. Lean over the rail at night when the vessel is under weigh ; watch the dark water churned up by the revolving screw, and you will see a display of phosphorescent lights, reaching back for hundreds of yards, such as will never be seen by journeyings in colder latitudes. Go ashore on any of the islands—it matters very little which—and you will see a wealth of jungle scenery such as only the tropics can produce. The stately palm tree fringes every coast; the giant banyan spreads itself on the flat country, drawing to their deaths the weaker forest trees around i t ; the granadilla creeps around the houses, yielding its monster fruit to all who care to pluck—a fruit bearing a very strong resemblance in its taste to the ordinary passion fruit; the banana, the breadfruit, the custard apple, the paw paw, and many other delicious fruits, known only by name, even to the dweller in sunny Australia, are common forest trees. Small wonder, indeed, that the native, with his meal to be had for the picking, is disposed to be indolent, and to see little virtue in the practice of thrift, or energy, or foresight. Labour is not required here if one is content with a mere subsistence. The cocoanut falls with a dull thud on the damp ground, and in a couple of years is a substantial tree; the ordinary pumpkin, if planted, has to be watched lest it overgrows everything ; the very uprights which have been erected as pickets, shoot out into leaves, and in a year your garden fence has been transformed into a hedge. True, the settler in these islands has to endure much of the prose of life where the travellers see only poetry. Such a jungle, and such wealth of soil, could not breed a healthy atmosphere, and the island fever comes sooner or later to every resident. But experience has proved that, in proportion as the

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land is opened up sickness decreases, and with the spread of settlement and increased knowledge of local ailments, the time must come when it will be reduced to a minimum. These are the islands as they are in their natural state, and one cannot help reflecting on how little has been done to develop their potential wealth. Reference has been made in these pages to holdings in which men with enterprise and with capital have employed both in the development of the islands, with a result that promises well in every respect for them. As individuals, such men have no public interest, but as pioneers in pointing out a field for investment, they are worthy of a place in a little handbook such as this. Why, instead of being so few that they can be counted on the fingers, should they not be here by the score and by the hundred, pouring their products into Australian ports, winning competencies for themselves, and helping, by their influence, to bring the islands under British control ? In Fiji, the planting of the cocoanut for the manufacture of copra has been carried on, on an extensive scale, with the happiest results for the promoters ; in the New Hebrides it is scarcely undertaken at all, the settlers contenting themselves in the main with purchasing from the natives, and the natives remaining satisfied with those trees which the richness of the soil has forced upon them. A case has been mentioned in which one resident is about to lay down a whole island under cocoanut trees, and the somewhat poetic undertaking is likely to be followed by a prosaic aspect in the shape of a substantial commercial return. And cocoanuts are but one out of a dozen natural products of the islands, while there are other articles which, though not indigenous, have yet been proved to thrive here. Coffee is one of them, and what is being done at one place in the group has already been told. What one man has done another can do, it is said ; and why should there be but a half-dozen or so English coffee plantations on the islands ? Tea has not yet been tried to any extent, but the conditions here are so closely allied to those countries in which tea-growing is a staple industry, that there is every reason for believing that it could be carried on profitably here. During 1897 the Australian colonies imported 35,149,206 lbs. of tea, valued at ^ 1 , 0 6 7 , 2 9 1 ; 2,573,935 lbs. of raw coffee and 228,789 lbs. of ground coffee, valued together at ^ 1 1 9 , 1 7 5 ; and the markets for both products are expanding with the increasing population. The suitability of the soil and climate for the growth of cocoa has been established, and the return is even better than that for coffee. Yet Australians, with all their enterprise, leave to India, to China, to Ceylon, to Java, or to Arabia, the supplying of this great market, while almost at their doors lie immense tracts of rich lands, to

10 Bridge Street, Sydney.


40

BURNS, PHILP & COMPANY'S (Ltd.)

be procured on the easiest terms, and while labour that could be employed profitably for both parties is idle and largely uncivilised. Some day, perhaps, things will be different, and there are not wanting

Banana, Mr. Chevillard's Plantation, Vila.

signs that the time will come when the New Hebrides will be an important dependency of some country.

ISLAND LINE OF STEAMERS.


A dvertisemen ts.

4i

Purveyor to H i s Excellency the Governor, VISCOUNT HAMPDEN,

Jewish Community. BY

APPOINTMENT.

William Buttel,

TELEPHONE 1635.

Shipping Butcher. S U P P L I E R TO T H E Gulf Canadian-Australian R.M. And Tyser Lines R o y a l and Foreign Navies Admiralty House

Messageries Orient . A. U.S.N. Adelaide Newcastle and H . R . AND

AND

Lord Brassey.

N o r t h Coast Companies

tOI & 103 C A S T L E R E A G H S T . , S Y D N E Y .

By Special Appointment to H . R . H . D U K E O F E D I N B U R G H , and His Excellency L O R D B R A S S E Y .

Tliomas Plaufali, SHIPPING

T E L E P H O N E 1128.

BUTCHER.

E S T A B L I S H E D i860.

103 GEORGE STREET, NORTH. PURVEYOR TO T H E ROYAL AND FOREIGN NAVIES. P. & O. Steam Navigation Company North German Lloyd's Steamship Company. Messageries Maritimes Steamship Company. German Australian Steamship Company. Aberdeen White Star LineBritish India Steam Navigation Company. H u d d a r t Parker & Co. Strath Line British & Colonial Line. Canadian-Australian Steamship Company. China Navigation Company.

Anglo-Australian Steam Navigation Company. Eastern & Australian S . N . Company. Australian United S.N. Company. Union Steamship Company. Lund's Blue Anchor Line. T y s e r Line of Steamers. Houlder Bros. Limited. Mcllwraiih, McEacharn. J a p a n Mail Line. J . .V; A. Brown. Melbourne Steamship Company.

C O R N E D B E E F , P O R K , M U T T O N , in Tierces.

Barrels and Kegs a Speciality.

O X T O N G U E S , S H E E P ' S T O N G U E S , T R I P E in J a r s , B R E A D , M I L K , V E G E T A B L E S and L I V E S T O C K always on hand.

POTATOES,

N O T E . â&#x20AC;&#x201D; H a v i n g had a L I N D E Refrigerating Machine fitted up on my premises, I am prepared to supply meats in prime condition during all seasons of the year.


4

2

Advertisements.

We Invite * All Classes of Enquiries from Island. Traders and others, upon receipt of which w e shall do our utmost t o meet requirements with all possible despatch. Australasia's Leading Ironmongers—

HOLDSWORTH MACPHERSON & CO., 2 5 2 GEORGE S T . , S Y D N E Y , N.S.W.

ISLAND SPECIALITIES—Axes, Hatchets, Cutlery. Pouches, Waist Belts, Butchers' Knives, &c, &c.

JAMES INGLIS & CO., riERCHANTS, MILLERS, MANUFACTURERS, AGENTS & TEA SPECIALISTS, Dean's Place, Sydney, & Queen S t . , Brisbane. " To those who go down to the sea in ships.'" YANATAS is a proved and certain Specific for Sea Sickness. Agents in Australasia. Ask the Chemist for Yanatas.

We are Sole Wholesale

W H I T E H E A T H E R W H I S K Y 1 -Finest Old Scotch on the Market. C O M M E N DA D O R P O R T '.— 25 years old in wood before bottling. A s s o r t e d C a s e s f o r T r a v e l l e r s ! — AH best brands of Wines and Spirits. M E U K O W ' S B R A N D I E S i - W e hold Sole Agency ill N.S.W. for these. S A L V I T I S P R E P A R A T I O N S ! The Grandest Remedies of the Age for all kinds of animals, from a Pigeon to a Prize Bull. G R A N U M A , F O D A H . H O M A H I—Finest Food Preparations known to man. GRANUMA for Porridge. FODAH for Puddings. HOMAH, Self-raising Flour. WE ARE THE LARGEST DISTRIBUTORS OF TEAS South of the Line. F O R T H E I S L A N D T R A D E I-Special Blends of Teas prepared. SPECIAL QUOTATIONS & SUPPLIES FOR PROVIDORES, &C. Teas, Coffees, Spices, Peppers, Essences, Sauces, Pickles, Meals, Rice, Dried Fruits, Jams, Baking and Curry Powders, Wines and Spirits, &c. Agents for Fauerheerd & Co., Oporto; J. Pemartin *» Co., Xeres ; Robt. Whitham & Co., Bordeaux; Low, Robertson & Co., Leith ; Grants, Craig Mills, Dundee; Natural Food Products Co., Sydney; The National Manufacturing Co., Sydney ; for Electric Cleanser Soap, &c, and many others. Sole Proprietors of the Famous Hilly Tea, Iota, Goldenia, and other well-known blends. White Heather Whisky, S c , &c, &c.


Advertisements.

43

T. C. Williams Co.'s "VICTORY" Tobacco If you want a really first-class smoke.

T.

C.

T.C.WILUAMSCO.

Each Plug should have an oblong red label,

Try

VICTORY

^ RICHMOND.VA.,

Williams

Co.'s

With the Manufacturers' name in gold lettering, as shown.

South Sea Island and General Commission Agent

M. Bugler, 15 years' experience in Fiji. 10 years' experience in Sydney.

South Sea Island Produce sold on Commission a t .

Rates.

Live Stock,

126

PITT

Highest

Market

bought to

order.

PROMPT RETURNS.

Produce and

General

Merchandise

.

Goods forwarded, and all business commissions executed in

.

accordance with Lowest Market Rates.

STREET,

SYDNEY.

Cable Address, " B U G L E R . "

Correspondence Attended to.

Bankers & Reference : T H E B A N K O F N . S . W . , Bathurst Street, Sydney.


Advertisement.

44

BURNS, PHILP and COMPANY'S (LTD.)

I

ISLiflND = LilfiE OF STEflflQERS To Lord Howe, Norfolk, New Hebrides, Banks Group. To British and German New Guinea and New Britain.

•X-

To Solomon Islands and S a n t a Cruz

ROUND TOURS, Occupying about Six Weeks. F a r e : Return, Saloon, £25. F u r t h e r Particulars m a y be obtained o n a p p l i c a t i o n at t h e Offices and Branches of t h e Company.

Head Offiee : 10 BRIDGE ST., SYDNEY.


BURNS, PHILP & COMPANY'S (Ltd.)

45

The Solomon Islands. T H E SOLOMON ISLANDS were discovered by Mendafta, the Spanish explorer, in 1567. The voyager named the group in the belief that he had found the source of King Solomon's wealth, although upon what grounds it is difficult to say, for there were neither pine nor cedar, hewn stones nor precious stones, gold nor brass to be seen at that time ; and even now that traces of the metals have been discovered, the quantity is not sufficient to support the theory that Solomon obtained his huge supplies from this part of the world. Captain Carteret, of the " Swallow," visited the islands after they had lain for 200 years untouched by European feet, and he was closely followed, in 1768, by Bougainville, whose name is given to one of the larger islands. The subsequent history of the Solomons is stained with the blood of manyvoyagers, traders, and missionaries. In 1851 the owner of the yacht "Wanderer" was killed on the south coast of Guadalcanal and in 1896, on the same island, the ill-fated Baron Norbeck von Foullon and several members of the expedition conveyed there by the Austrian gunboat, "Albatros," were slaughtered. In 1857 some French priests were murdered on the islands of Ysabel and San Christoval while endeavouring to found missions. At Rubiana, Messrs. Guy and Atkinson met their death at the hands of the ruthless head-hunters. In 1880 Lieutenant Bower, R.N., of H.M.S. "Sandfly," was, together with several of his boat's crew, killed on the island of Mandoliana by a head-hunting party of the Florida natives ; and nearly every part of the group has its own scene of violent and sudden deaths. Warships of several nations have visited and shelled the villages of the offenders, and now matters are gradually improving, though an occasional outbreak and attack tends to make the traders most careful for their safety.

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46

BURNS, PHILP & COMPANY'S (Ltd.)

The inhabitants are said to be Papuans, but the most casual observer cannot fail to be struck by the remarkable variations in type met with during a run through the group. Resident traders can tell at a glance which island produced any " nigger " picked out from the mixed crowds found in the coastal villages or in the vicinity of the trading stations. The Buka and Bougainville boys are Melanesians, intensely black, as though polished with blacklead, and have close, curly hair. The Malaita boys are Polynesians, reddish in colour, with straight hair, generally bleached to an auburn shade, worn long, and combed out into an "aureole." The Rubiana natives are of the Malay type, cruel, thin-

w. H . Lucas.

S i m b o , Solomons.

lipped savages, with aquiline noses, black-skinned, lithe and agile. The Guadalcanar boys are light brown in colour, happy and good-natured, and generally tractable, although the hill tribes bear a most evil reputation for treachery and murderous instinct. Generally speaking, the Solomon Islanders are cannibals and headhunters, though in the districts more frequently visited, and especially in the vicinity of the Commissioner's residence, they are abandoning their old habits. At the present day, however, the chiefs of Rendova, Vella Lavella, and New Georgia make raids upon the less warlike tribes of

Head Officeâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;


ISLAND LINE OP STEAMERS.

Ysabel, Florida, and the Guadalcanar coast, murdering all they can lay their hands on, feasting on their bodies, and carrying off their heads to be dried and kept as trophies of their prowess. In 1886 the islands were divided into two portions, and protectorates were established by Great Britain and Germany. The latter includes Buka, Bougainville, Choiseul and Ysabel, together with the adjoining islets ; while the British is the lion's share, comprising Treasury, Vella Lavella, Kulambangra, New Georgia, Rendova, Guadalcanar, Florida, Malaita, San Christoval, and an immense number of smaller islands. The first point touched by Messrs. Burns, Philp & Company's steamers is

TREASURY, or MONO, an oval-shaped island of upraised coral formation, about six and a half by four miles in extent. It is densely wooded, and rises to a height of 1,165 feet above the sea level.

RONONGO, about 50 miles to the S.E. of Treasury, and lying under the lee of dreaded Vella Lavella, is a steep island with a lofty ridge, 2,000 feet high, in its northern part. A couple of hours' steaming brings us to

SIMBO, a mountainous island covered with lofty trees, woven together by masses of green vines and creepers. The approach to the snug little harbour is a tortuous one amongst reefs and shoal patches, but once inside, the shelter is perfect. M. E. Pratt is the resident trader, and his house nestles on the shore at the foot of an almost perpendicular hill rising 800 feet above. Notwithstanding the steep ascent, the natives have built their chalet-like houses here and there all the way to the top, and their brown-thatched gables peep out from the masses of thick green vegetation like so many conical birds'-nests. From the shore it seems impossible to reach these houses by any direct means short of a ladder, but the natives are like monkeys in their agility, and it is really necessary to erect their dwellings in places as difficult of access as possible in order to guard against the attacks of the Vella Lavella head-hunters. The natives are very simply clad in a strip of twisted cocoanut fibre, with occasionally a scrap of calico in addition. They wear the usual arm and ear ornaments, and some sport curious crownless hats, or

10 Bridge Street, Sydney.


48

BURNS, PHILP & COMPANY'S (Ltd.)

sun-shades, made of woven palm leaf, three-cornered in shape, and coquettishly "raked," the abundant curly hair filling the place of a crown.

R E P O S I T O R Y for Head-hunters' Trophies (Sktills of Prisoners and their Wealth taken during Raids). W. H. Lucas.

Simbo,

Solomons.

Their canoes are graceful and light, built of planks sewn together with plaited fibre, the seams caulked with the pounded kernel of the tita, or putty nut, which is abundant throughout the group, and they do not make use of the outrigger, so general in the islands both to the N.W. and S. About four hours' coasting along a succession of small islands brings us to the entrance of Blackett Strait, a deep, clear channel between Kulambangra and Wana Wana islands. The former island is 16 miles long by 13 miles broad, and has two lofty peaks, each 5,000 feet in height. It is a beautiful sight to watch the white mists drifting up to the summit of these immense peaks, whose heights appear all the greater from the fact that they rise almost directly from the sea. The scenery along this winding channel is very charming. The dense forest extends to the? very edge of the shore, and masses of foliage in varied shades of green, red and brown droop over, dipping into the violet water.

Head OfBceâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;


ISLAND LINE OF STEAMERS.

49

Then comes the " Back Passage," between Wana Wana and New Georgia. This is a narrow opening, not wider than the ship's length in some places, but ten fathoms deep, and walled in by perpendicular, submarine coral cliffs, fringed with fantastic growths of a thousand shapes and shades of colour. White cockatoos fly screaming across the strait, scarlet and green parrots noisily invest the tall trees, while the great island pigeon croons his monotonous call from the hidden depths of the forest. Occasionally the shy crocodile may be seen swimming in the

Native House, Solomons-

distance, but he is too cautious to allow the sportsman to get within gunshot. As the passage widens, great shallow patches and low, mud-coloured reefs are seen, and the steamer creeps through the dangerous and twisting channel at " dead slow." Then deep water is reached, and at full speed again the steamer proceeds along inside the great barrier reef which lies to the eastward of New Georgia, to Rubiana.

10 Bridge Street, Sydney.


50

BURNS, PHILP & COMPANY'S

(Ltd.)

RUBIANA. Here there are two trading stations, Mr. Norman Wheatley's, on the main island, and Mr. Frank Wickham's, on a small island close to the shore. Mr. Wickham's island is only a few acres in extent, but it is thickly covered with cocoanut palms; and his stores and dwelling-houses are placed on the side facing the shore in such a snugly-sheltered spot that, during the north-west season, when the gales are howling over the island, the owner can sit on his verandah and watch the storm sweeping along on either side, while he remains in perfect shelter and comfort.

w. H. Lucas.

Chief's Tomb, Rubiana.

Mr. Wheatley is engaged in clearing some of the level country behind his station for cocoanut planting. The soil is covered with thick growth, and full of great coral rocks, so it is no light undertaking to clear it; but already he has a fair area planted with young trees. As soon as the ground is cleared, sweet potatoes are planted with the view of preventing the growth of new scrub, an object which is effectually carried out by that succulent and saccharine tuber.

Head Officeâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;


ISLAND LINE OP STEAMERS.

This place was formerly the " headquarters" of the head-hunting community, and although the practice is dying out amongst the shore dwellers, still some of the Rubiana boys carry the long-handled axe with which they were wont to secure their trophies. The natives are intensely black, and rather small and fine in feature. The practice of

w. H. Lucas.

Rubiana Native, Solomons.

enlarging the lobe of the ear is indulged in to a positively ridiculous extent. The procedure is to pierce the lobe and insert a weighted ring, which causes gradual enlargement. Then a strip of bamboo or other flexible wood is bent into the shape of a hoop, but left unfastened.

10 Bridge Street, Sydney.


BURNS, PHILP & COMPANY'S (Ltd.)

This is rolled up tightly and inserted, so that, by expanding, it exerts a constant outward pressure on the cartilage, which, in some cases, is forced out until the aperture is 7 ^ inches in diameter—a mere thread of brown gristle hanging down to the shoulder ! Here also there is a manufactory, where the clam shell armlets are turned out. The natives take the very largest clams obtainable, and with a cross-cut saw (made of a piece of hoop iron) cut out blocks of solid shell, two natives sawing while another pours water on the block. Before hoop iron became available, these blocks were rubbed down laboriously on sandstone. Even now the process of rounding the sawn blocks is carried out in this way, the native squatting on his heels and grinding away for hours, rubbing the blocks on large, flat pieces of sandstone lying in fresh water. When the block is accurately rounded, a hole is drilled about an inch from the outer edge, and the core is cut out by a bow saw, the blade of which is fibre. Of course, this takes an immensity of time and numerous renewals of fibre. The ring is now about 7 inches in diameter, i1/^ inches in depth, and 1 inch in thickness. This is carefully sawn into two rings, and then the fining down and polishing commences. This may occupy one or two months, according to the skill and energy of the operator, and at last the armlet is finished, rounded outside, and straight inside. These armlets are highly prized by the natives of adjoining islands, and it takes a very large offer in trade tobacco or calico to induce them to part with their treasured ornaments. King Gamu, the Rubiana chief, wears nine on each arm, and they are tambu, or sacred to his Majesty's person—nothing will induce him to part with them. The price current in cash or trade at the manufactory is from 3s to 6s, according to size and finish. There is another larger ornament cut near the hinge of the shell, showing a yellow transparent patch upon it, that is very highly prized indeed, actually forming the most valuable article of barter known in the islands, as much as J£I worth of goods being exchanged for a fine specimen. Only the wealthiest natives can aspire to the possession of such an ornament, and it is carefully " served" with strips of red calico, covering about three parts of the circlet, but leaving the prized yellow patch uncovered. It is slung round the neck by a string of beads, and allowed to hang on the breast. There is a great canoe house close to Mr. Wheatley's station, in which the war canoes have been laid up for so many years that it is doubtful whether they would float now if placed in the water. The front post of this house is adorned with a small wooden god, and a number of votive offerings are attached beneath him. This post is tambu, and though

Head Office—


ISLAND LINE OP STEAMERS.

strangers may look, they touch at their peril. Formerly the canoe house was ornamented with many smoke-dried human heads, the eyes and ears inlaid with mother-o'-pearl ; but recent changes in administration

W. H. Lucas.

Canoe

House,

Rubiana,

Solomons.

and the destruction of all war canoes found afloat by British men-of-war have discouraged the natives, and their ghastly trophies are either hidden away or destroyed. Rather more than a day's steaming down the great channel lying between the German and British Solomonsâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;a channel as calm as a lakeâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;brings us to

SAVO. This is a circular volcanic island about 10 miles in circumference, with a jagged and irregular coast. The sides of the crater rise up 1800 feet close to the shore, leaving but a narrow strip of beach and thickly-wooded lowland, upon which there are numerous native villages. The last eruption of the volcano occurred about 50 years ago, when large quantities of water, dust and ashes were ejected, and several natives were killed. The interior of the crater is still intensely hot, and filled

10 Bridge Street, Sydney.


BURNS, PHILP & COMPANY'S (Ltd.)

with pumice interspersed with great boulders, and jets of steam and smoke frequently break out, so that the natives are always apprehensive of an outbreak. Earthquakes are very frequent, and severe enough to throw a person down, and the natives always throw themselves prone on the ground at the first indication of a tremor. During one which occurred several years ago, a subsidence of part of the coast took place, and vessels now anchor where once there was a village. The inhabitants are very numerous, being estimated at 4,000. They are divided into tribes under the government of sundry fat chiefs, whose dignity is maintained by wearing shirts and hats—their subjects being content with the humble fibre belt. Their canoes are large and seaworthy, being built very high in the bow. Pigeons, cockatoos, and parrots are very numerous on the island ; the former may be shot by the dozen and stewed, grilled, pied, roasted, or cooked a la spatchcock, and form an agreeable change of diet. The white cockatoos are splendid talkers, easily procured and tamed. One of the most interesting birds met with is the Megapodius Brenchleyi—a first cousin of the New Britain megapode, and closely allied to the Tallegalla of Australia. On the island of Savo it is found in the greatest abundance, and the eggs form an important item in the daily food supply of the natives, who have a curious legend connected with this bird* They hold the shark in great veneration, and say that their island was made by the shark, who brought the stones together and placed upon them a man, a woman, a yam plant, and a malou or megapode. Things "went well for a time ; the people increased, and so did the malou. At last the people went to the shark and complained that the malou made much havoc among the yam patches by digging holes to lay their eggs, so they asked the shark to take them away. This was done, but now the natives missed the eggs, so they asked the shark to bring the malou back, but to confine them to one spot. This request was also complied with, and the result may now be seen. The malou lay their eggs on two large, cleared, sandy spaces, and nowhere else on the island. Upon these patches no weeds or grass can grow, as the sand is being constantly turned over by the birds when digging holes to lay their eggs, and by the natives when in search of them. The sandy spaces are fenced off into plots, which belong to different owners. The natives are of very mixed origin, coming, indeed, from almost every part of the Solomon group, of which Savo is practically the centre. They are of all shades, from coppery-red to intense black, generally * Mr. C. M. Woodford, Resident Commissioner, S.I.

ISLAND LINE OF STEAMERS.

=jl


Agents!

BURNS, PHILP & COMPANY,

LIMITED,

10 Bridge Street, Sydney. And B r a n c h e s .


56

BURNS, PHILP & COMPANY'S

(Ltd.)

good-humoured looking, and some decidedly handsome. There are two albinos, a man and a woman, the children of two full-coloured' sisters. The Savonites were formerly most energetic head-hunters, and even now have trophies of skulls erected in their villages ; but they have lost interest in these collections, and they are allowed to fall into disorder and decay. The natives have a curious custom of "swopping" their children to such an extent that it is safe to say that no child knows its own father. The transfer is effected without any formality, and the youngster goes along with its adopted parent, and thenceforth belongs to his tribe or family. A couple of hours' steaming takes us to

GAVOTU, a small, cleared island belonging to Mr. Neilsen, whose comfortable house and spacious stores are built under the shelter of a grassy hill. Just across the bay, and lying close to the shore of the large island of Florida, is TULAGI, the seat of Government, where the Resident Commissioner, Mr. C. M. AVoodford, has his house, offices and " calaboose," or gaol. His staff at present consists of Mr. Arthur Mahaffey and six stalwart Malaita boys, as police and boat's crew combined. His sole means of communication with other islands, in the absence of a man-of-war, is a whaleboat ; and this for a territory teeming with turbulent cannibals and headhunters, and formed of islands scattered over 600 miles of ocean ! Mr. Woodford's house stands on the top of a high hill, overlooking a wide expanse of island-studded sea, and swept by every cooling breeze that blows. Standing on the verandah, one looks over a cliff from which a large pyramidal piece of rock has been detached by some earth tremor in the long gone b y ; all round the house the ground has been cleared, and Mr. AVoodford is now engaged in planting it with ornamental shrubs, palms, and orchids placed in the hollowed tree stumps. Beyond the cleared ground the heavily-wooded country extends to the beach, and further on, the eye travels over a stretch of 16 miles of smooth sea to the rugged outlines of Guadalcanar. Just at sundown a beautiful effect is produced, the large island being bathed in a golden light which sweeps along the shore, bringing out all its details of grassy plain, wooded mountain gully, and precipice with marvellous distinctness. One can even see the little white patches of rock on the Lion's Head Mountain, near which the members of the Austrian expedition were murdered.

Head Officeâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;


ISLAND LINE OF STEAMERS.

57

Mount Lammas stands clearly outlined against the sky in purple on blue, while all below him is maize and green, flecked with white rifts of floating cloud.

w

r ™«9ftaf i W l W r ' * * ^ * "

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BURNS, PHILP & COMPANY'S (Ltd.)

To the right the low wooded hills of Florida roll down to the beach, while the harbour shows wonderful variations of colour—blue, purple, yellow, and emerald green—according to the varying depths of the water—veritable colour sketches, in which the giant hand of nature covers an immense canvas with an infinitude of delicate colour-touches that contribute to a singularly vivid whole. In the evening, when the moon rises, the scene becomes one of a softer loveliness, and from the dense forest comes the shrill barking of the great tree frogs, while bats, both large and small, flit silently through the moonlit air.

w. H. Lucas.

Guadalcanal*, Solomons.

A few miles to the south lies

NEAL ISLAND, the head station of Messrs. Butchart and Griffiths. This is truly one of the gems of the Pacific. About ten acres in extent, with a snowwhite beach and emerald green turf, it is crowned by a magnificent banyan tree, lofty, spreading and multitudinous as to its aerial roots, clothed with graceful, broad-leaved vines. Huge clusters of bright yellow-flowered orchids and dark-green ferns are grouped in masses on the broad boughs, which at times are fairly alive with chattering birds of sheeny black plumage and cunning red eyes. There is just a little clump

Head. Office-


ISLAND LINE OF STEAMERS.

59

of trees on one side of the island. Paw-paw trees, loaded with fruit, and a few young cocoanuts are scattered over the cleared ground, and the station buildings, stores, and the ubiquitous copra house occupy the remainder of the island. The hulk of a large schooner lying on the beach, and the gentle swell breaking on a small outlying reef, complete the scene, and make it one of the most picturesque imaginable. Some miles down the coast of Guadalcanar is

AOLA, another of the Pacific gemsâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;a small island station belonging to Captain W. Pope, lying off the coast of Guadalcanar. On the " mainland," just opposite Aola, lies a plantation belonging to Captain Svenson, where

W.H.Lucas.

Captain W. Pope's Station, Aolai Solomons.

cocoanuts are being extensively planted, and a nursery for raising coffee plants has recently been established. The flat upon which this plantation is situated extends for many miles along the eastern coast of Guadalcanar, and varies from one to seven miles in width. Although at present somewhat heavily timbered, it offers a splendid field for any capitalist who is prepared to expend a little money in clearing and planting. Here the cocoanut will pay handsomely in the fifth year after planting, and will steadily increase in value up to the tenth year, from which time onwards it yields its regular returns. In the meantime, while waiting for the cocoanut crop to commence paying, coffee, vanilla,

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maize, and other more rapidly-maturing crops can be put in, and ground may be prepared for rubber, which, undoubtedly, will form a splendid paying industry ere long. It is, indeed, surprising that such a magnificent country as this has been so long neglected. True, the natives have been, and still are, a troublesome factor to be reckoned with; but their claws are rapidly being cut, and every fresh settler furthers the work of civilisation and reclamation. Within easy reach of Sydney, and now regularly served by improved, and ever improving, steam communication, the Solomon Islands must, in the near future, become a most important producing country, yielding wealth to the spirited and adventurous settlers who early proceed to develop its resources. There are two other ports of call in the Solomons, MARAU

SOUND

being the next after leaving Aola. This is a really beautiful spot, lying between the south-east corner of Guadalcanar and the other great island of San Cristoval. Captain Svenson has his head station here, and sends out his schooner and cutters to trade throughout a large portion of the group. The sound is formed by numerous small islands and coral reefs, with many deep passages between them. The hills, valleys and islands of Marau Sound are all densely wooded with lofty, dark-foliaged trees.

UGI, the final point touched in the Solomon Group, lies four and a half miles northward of San Cristoval; it is an island six miles in length by two and a half in breadth, and rising to an elevation of 500 feet. With the exception of a bay on the south-west side, it is surrounded by a fringing reef. There are several villages on the island, the population being estimated at six or seven hundred. The tourist of a sporting turn of mind will find immense numbers of the island pigeons at most places visited by the steamer. Naturalists can positively revel in the study of birds, bats, land and marine shells ; while botanists can find a wide field for study in the densely-wooded islands. Collectors of native weapons and curios may accumulate vast quantities of the elaborately-carved and ornamented spears and arrows of Bougainville, which form objects of barter in many parts of the group. The wonderful clubs, carved and inlaid with mother-o'-pearl, are somewhat scarce and high in price, but well worth the money asked for them. Fishing is not very good, as the use of dynamite has done much harm to the legitimate pastime. Fortunately its ,use has now been prohibited, and ere long the supply of fish will doubtless be plentiful again.

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Santa Cruz Group. A few hundred miles to the south-east lies Santa Cruz Island, the largest of the Santa Cruz group, and another of those islands connected with the early Spanish expeditions. En route we have passed close to a few small tracts of land in mid-ocean, the Swallow group, the Duff group, and the Reef Islands being amongst them. In connection with

Reef Island Natives and Canoe. the Reef Islands there is an authenticated story which goes to indicate the extraordinary endurance of the native A small party of natives were wrecked on the islands, and fearing that if they encountered the residents they would be murdered, they decided to make for Santa Cruz, which they believed could not be far away. Their canoe had. however,

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been lost, and they determined to make an attempt to swim the distance. This they succeeded in doing, and they reached a trader's station on the beach after having been 60 hours in the water. They were absolutely exhausted, and were just able to crawl upon the beach and fling themselves on the sand. Here they were discovered by the trader, and tended. It is fortunate they were found almost immediately they landed, for it is a peculiarity of these people that, while they will welcome the new arrival who comes laden with provisions, they give but short shrift to the unfortunate who, having been the sport of the waves for some days, is thrown destitute amongst them. Carlisle Bay, the first landing place on the island, is one of the historic spots of the western Pacific, for it was here that Commodore Goodenough lost his life in 1875. The cross that marks the scene of the fatal assault on him can be seen as the vessel steams up the bay. An attack had been made on H.M.S. "Sandfly " in the previous year, and, consequently, when Goodenough arrived here in the " Pearl,'' he was on his guard. A canoe put off to meet the war vessel, bearing on board presents of food and other things, and, in view of these peace-offerings, the Commodore decided to land. He and his party remained on shore for the greater part of an hour, and just as they were seating themselves in their boat to return, a native from between two houses fired at the Commodore and struck him in the side. The boat pushed off, and a flight of arrows was sent after it two of the seamen being struck, and the Commodore receiving a second woundâ&#x20AC;&#x201D; this time in the head. The wounds were not considered serious at first, and the officer wrote an official account of the fray after his return to the ship But, as usual, the arrows were poisoned; tetanus set in, and on the ninth day Goodenough and two of the men died. Times have changed since then, and though the Santa Cruz native does not comprehend English very well, he has now a friendly welcome for every British ship. The spirit of trade is strong in him, and as the ship steams to her anchoring ground a score of canoes will be seen coming towards her, the boys pulling with great energy in their endeavours to be first on the spot. In the manufacture of native weapons and curios generally, they stand far above the Hebrideans, their canoes, paddles and spears being exquisitely formed, and their mat and basket work being a marvel of neatness. The poisoned arrows are now only an article of commerce with them, though they are still tipped with the neatly-carved human bone which renders a puncture from them so dangerous. The scene around Carlisle Bay is exquisite The vessel steers straight for the broad river, which empties itself into the bay, and one can see up its straight course for a mile. A little care needs to be exercised, should the traveller

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• i-'raK-

"mmm

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feel inclined for a stroll inland, for the crocodile is common on the banks of the rivers and creeks. A picturesque little islet is right alongside the vessel as she lies at anchor, and on the other side the land sweeps round in a graceful curve, the whole foreground being studded with the stately palm, and the lofty back-ground of hills clothed in the richest green. This is one of the many islands over which a British protectorate has lately been established. One cannot help feeling a pleasure that it has practically come under English control, if it had nothing to recommend it but its beauty ; but in addition to the aesthetic aspect of the case, one cannot but think that the day will come when it is destined also to be a source of wealth. Round the island a little from Carlisle Bay, we have another anchorage in Graciosa Bav, the spot where Mendafla founded his ill-fated colony nearly three centuries ago. It was on the 18th May, 1898, that Captain Williams-Freeman, of H.M.S. " Mohawk," hoisted the Union Jack in the village of Malue, Graciosa Bay, on the island of Ndeni or Santa Cruz. This was the first of the nineteen separate islands or groups annexed by the " Mohawk " and " Goldfinch " between 18th May and 20th July, 1898. The inhabitants of the Santa Cruz group are a merry, light-hearted lot, very mixed as regards origin, for both Polynesian and Micronesian types are found together, with intermediate shades in red, brown, and blackbrown. Notwithstanding their genial manners, they have rather a bad reputation, derived from the numerous murders of white people in their islands. Even now that missionary influence and the visits of trading and warships have somewhat familiarised them with the appearance of white people and also instilled a wholesome fear of their powers into their dusky breasts, it is not safe, to venture too freely into the bush or to trust the natives to any great extent. They are skilful weavers, and produce mats and bags, woven on looms, of the most beautiful and intricate patterns in black, red and white fibre. It is remarkable to note to what an extent the triangle, equilateral or acute angled, enters into their ornamentation. This is particularly noticeable in connection with an interesting " curio," of which plenty can be obtained at a very low price. It consists of a club, about two feet six inches in length, the upper half of which is shaped like a banana, and painted in black and red on a white lime-washed ground, with fantastic figures, in which the triangle predominates, while circles and zig-zag patterns diversify the whole. The great peculiarity, however, is that no two of these clubs are adorned with exactly the same pattern. A fringe of long ribbon-like fibre is placed round the centre,

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and to the handle a remarkably effective rattle of hollowed nuts is attached. This is purely an ornamental article, used in the dance which takes place on the occasion of the great periodical pig battues, entitled the ioo pig dance. At the ceremony the clubs are brandished, the rattles producing a hideous clamour, to which is added the joyous yelping of

W. H. Lucas.

N a t i v e of S a n t a

Cruz.

the performers and audienceâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;a truly pandemoniacal noise. Their canoes are outriggered, graceful in form, neatly finished, and whitewashed with lime, the sea-going or war canoes being double in form and very large.

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The climate is humid, to say the least, rain falling nearly every day in the year; in consequence the vegetation is particularly luxuriant, and cleared land requires constant attention to keep it free from gratuitous growths. An interesting article is the feather " money" of Santa Cruz. It consists of countless crimson feathers, plucked from a small bird and disposed in successive layers over a band of woven fibre three inches in width. This band is woven in one continuous length, year after year, and when ten feet are made, ten " tallies " of strung shells are affixed.

W. H. Lucas.

Santa Cruz

House

A piece of 20 feet in length is worth a chiefs ransom in the eyes of the people, and, indeed, only chiefs can afford to store up their wealth in this form. Intrinsically, the feathers and fibre are worth nothing, but the countless thousands of unfortunate birds that must have been sacrificed, the years of patient labour required to pick out only the special scarlet feathers of a certain length, to lay them in symmetrical rows and then bind them into the interwoven fibre must represent a huge value in applied (or mis-applied) energy. However, after all, the

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value of any currency depends entirely upon the acceptance by mutual consent of a certain arbitrary standard, and this condition being fulfilled in the case of the Santa Cruz scarlet feathers, we need not criticise nor blame the natives for their choice of a medium. Tortoise-shell is eargerly sought after by the natives, and though the shell turtle is found in the islands, they will offer their curios and mats in exchange for pieces from which they make a curious ornament, worn by every man who can afford it. It is a disc of the shell, fastened to the cartilage of the nose and allowed to fall over the mouth in such a way that at a distance the wearer appears to have an abnormally long upper lip, and at short range seems to be wearing a respirator. This " ornament" must be peculiarly inconvenient at meal times, as it completely covers the mouth, and must be lifted up to admit every mouthful. There is plenty of scope for pioneer work in the Santa Cruz and adjoining islands, but they offer rather less inducements than their more fertile and extensive neighbours, the New Hebrides and Solomon Islands.

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British New Guinea. T H E discovery of the island of New Guinea is attributed to Antonio d'Abreu and Francisco Serrao, who sighted it in 1511 ; but the first man from the Old World who landed there was Dom Jorge de Menezes, who wintered in the neighbourhood of Geelvink Bay, on the occasion of his attempt to reach the Moluccas from Malacca by a new route round Borneo, in 1526. Two years later Saavedra (who called it Isla de Oro) sailed along the north coast of the island. In 1545 one of the captains under the Spanish navigator, Villalobos, by name Ortiz de Retes, gave it its present name of New Guinea. The earliest published map on which New Guinea is delineated appeared in Linschotens' book of East Indian voyages, in 15951 the source of information being Portuguese. It is from Lemaire and Schouten, the Dutch navigators, that we obtain the earliest information of the north and north-east coasts of New Guinea. These men,in 1616, discovered and traced a considerable portion of the coast towards and westward of Cape D'Urville. In 1700 Dampier, the hardy old buccaneer, also saw a portion of the country to the west of the cape, and in 1705 Jacob Weyland, in command of a Dutch expedition, discovered and mapped out the deep indentations on the northern coast, which he named Geelvink Bay, after one of his ships. Captain Forrest, in a little vessel of 10 tons belonging to the East India Company, visited the north coast in 1774, and in 1794 Captain McCluer arrived on the north-west coast to succour the survivors of an attempted settlement by Captain Hayes of the East India Company's ship, " Batavia." D'Entrecasteaux, in 1792-3, and D'Urville, in 1827, also sailed a considerable distance along the coast, the latter navigator giving his name to the cape already mentioned. The Spanish navigator, Luiz Vaez de Torres, in 1606, reached, in the frigate " L a Almirante," the Louisiade Archipelago, which he called the beginning of New Guinea, but being unable to weather the easternmost point of land (Cape Deliverance), he bore away westward along its southern shores to the strait which bears his name. It was M. De Bougainville who, in June, 1768, made the south coast of New Guinea, and, working to windward along this new land (as he thought it to be), doubled its eastern point, which was significantly called Cape Deliverance. The next addition to our knowledge of the coast was made in August, 1791, by Captain

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Edwards, in H.M.S. "Pandora," shortly before she was wrecked on the Barrier Reef of Queensland, when returning from Tahiti with some of the mutineers of the "Bounty." In the year 1792, Captains Bligh and Portlock, in the " Providence " and " Assistant," carrying breadfruit from Tahiti to the West Indies, saw, on their way to Torres Strait, a portion of the south coast of New Guinea, extending about 80 miles to the west and north of Cape Rodney. During his voyage in search of the unfortunate La Perouse, in 1793, Rear Admiral Bruny D'Entrecasteaux came in sight of Rossel Island, and passed Yeina, Misima, the Renard, Bonvouloir and D'Entrecasteaux Islands, which was the earliest knowledge obtained of the north portion of the Louisiade Archipelago. Messrs. Bampton and Alt, in 1793, M. Rault Coutance, in 1804, and Captain J. Dumont D'Urville, with the French corvettes " LAstrolabe " and " La Zelee," in 1840, all made discoveries on the south coast of the island. The latter navigator, during seven days, made a running survey extending over a space 450 miles in length without anchoring or communicating with any of the inhabitants. The south coast of New Guinea and the Louisiade Archipelago were surveyed from time to time by Captain Blackwood (1845), Lieutenant C. B. Yule (1846), and Captain Owen Stanley (1849-50). In 1874, Lieutenant L. S. Dawson, R.N., Admiralty Surveyor, attached to H.M.S. " Basilisk" (Captain J. Moresby), partially surveyed the D'Entrecasteaux Islands and the coast from East Cape to Cape King William ; while subsequent surveys of the south-east coast, including the China and Goschen Straits, have been made by Lieutenants Field and Pullen of H.M. ships " D a r t " and " Lark." Some pains have been taken here, possibly at the risk of trying the reader's patience, to mention the names of those old mariners and explorers who were the first to give the world any account of this wonderful island, for the reason that the visitor to New Guinea will everywhere be confronted with points of interest which have been christened after the first discoverers, and therefore will assume an interest which otherwise they might not possess. For instance, the names D'Urville, "Geelvink," D'Entrecasteaux, Torres, Bougainville and " L'Astrolabe " will be constantly met with by the voyageur in the coral seas as applied to capes, bays, islands, straits, and other features of the journey. The Dutch Government first supported, and then eventually assumed as Suzerains, the claim of a Moluccan ruler, the Sultan of Fidore, who had long held sway over the extreme western portion of New Guinea and some districts in the vicinity of Geelvink Bay, then known as Papua. From time to time these people have sent small exploring expeditions to

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these shores, and their territory is now described as comprising the northwestern half of the Island, bounded on the east by a straight line drawn from Cape Bonpland on the east side of Humboldt Bay, in long. 140 0 47' E, to long. 141" E on the south coast, with the adjacent islands. In 1885, the portion of New Guinea lying to the east of the 141st meridian was divided between Great Britain and Germany, the former taking all the south coast from the east point to Mitre Rock in lat. 8째 S, with the off-lying islands; Germany taking the north coast between Mitre Rock and the Dutch boundary. The German portion of New Guinea has been named Kaiser Wilhelmsland, and the islands off the north-east coast have been christened by them the Bismarck Archipelago. The Germans have established a Government in their portion of the island, and several industries are being pursued there. The Dutch, however, have not as yet taken any steps to settle their part of the island, and raids from thence into the possession have done much harm. The acquisition by the British Government of the portion of the island not claimed by Holland was long advocated by Australian statesmen. The growing influence of France and Germany in the Pacific Ocean, coupled with the establishment of a penal settlement in New Caledonia, created some alarm in Australia, lest a country lying so near her shores as New Guinea should pass into the hands of a foreign power. To prevent this from happening, as regards the eastern portion of the island at least, the Queensland Government annexed it to the Empire in April, 1883, but the proceeding was not ratified by the Imperial authorities. The Intercolonial Convention, held in Sydney in November and December, 1883, passed resolutions urging the annexation of Eastern New Guinea, and on November 6th, 1884, upon Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria agreeing to guarantee ^ 1 5 , 0 0 0 per annum to meet the cost of government, a protectorate was proclaimed over the south-east coast of New Guinea and the adjacent islands.

GENERAL

FEATURES.

New Guinea, the largest island in the world, if Australia be excluded, lies some 80 miles to the north of Queensland. Its greatest length is 1,490 miles, and its maximum breadth 430 miles, its area being about 234,768 square miles. The portion of the island comprised in British possession, is estimated to contain about 87,786 square miles. The islands which lie round and about New Guinea, and which form part of the possession, number, great and small, about two hundred. Of these the principal ones are Kiriwina (in the Trobriand Group of

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D'Entrecasteauxi, Woodlark, Normanby, Goodenough, Fergusson, St. Aignan, Rossel and Sudest. The area of the islands is about 2,745 square miles, giving a total area for the possession of about 90,540 square miles. Of the portion of New Guinea which has been annexed by the British Government, the eastern half is mainly composed of mountainous and hilly country, the western half of low, mostly flat, lands. The greater part of the country is densely wooded with thick undergrowth, and almost impenetrable vines and creepers, making the effort of clearing country or even cutting a track a most laborious one. Owing to the extremely broken nature of theground, the rocky precipitous tracks, and the immense altitude of the main range, locomotion in many portions of the possession is attended with great fatigue, and even bodily danger. As an example of the difficulty of travelling may be cited the cases of miners who have left Port Moresby with the idea of reaching the Mambare goldfields from that place, which is only, as the crow flies, about 60 miles distant. Some two hundred of them have from time to time attempted this trip, but very few have succeeded in reaching even the gap in the main range (the only practicable place for crossing) which is only 30 miles away. Several of the men were absent for three months on this fruitless errand, and suffered great privations, encountering much opposition from the natives, who are very savage towards the ranges. Since that time a track has been cut for 30 miles with the idea of striking the gap, but up to the present time the road has not been carried as far as the range. It has been stated that this track will be completed in about six months, but several old miners whom the writer met seemed to be somewhat sceptical on this point. Latterly, indeed, several miners have fought their way across from the mouth of the Vanapa River, which lies about 30 miles to the west of Fort Moresby, but the way was found to be exceedingly difficult, and the range at the point at which they crossed it rose to an altitude of over 10,000 feet. Here and there throughout the colony open forest country, well grassed, is met with, which would carry cattle and horses well, but is unsuitable for sheep. No treeless plains have yet been discovered. The only country yet found which is in any way suitable for sheep is on the tableland at Astrolabe, about 20 miles from Port Moresby. Throughout the possession the lands are well watered by rivers, streams, brooks and springs, some of them being favoured by Nature in this particular more bountifully than seems altogether necessary. Several of the rivers are navigable by small craft for a considerable distance, and have all been navigated to the point at which navigation ceases to be practicable. The Fly River, the largest water-course on the

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island, situated on the extreme west of British New Guinea, has been ascended by a steam launch for a distance of some 500 miles. The highest known point of land in the possession is the summit of Mount Victoria, the culminating point of the Owen-Stanley Range, which is over 13,000 feet high. Of the numerous islands which belong to the possession, the majority are lofty in comparison with their size. Most of them are well timbered, but some, like Kiriwina and Nada, are coralline and flat.

Rev. Dr. Brown.

Geyser, Ferguson Island, New Guinea.

Much could be written of the administration of this wonderful island â&#x20AC;&#x201D;of the brief sway of Sir Peter Scratchley and the Hon. Jno. Douglas, and of the magnificent services performed by the retiring LieutenantGovernor, Sir William MacGregor, who ruled this delightful people so wisely and so well during the ten years that the British Empire has held sovereign sway over them. Interesting matter could be made of the special laws laid down for the regulation of the natives, and pages could be filled with authentic accounts of hand-to-hand scrimmages which Sir William MacGregor, Captain Butterworth, the Commandant of Police, and other Government officers have had with rebellious tribes about the Fly and Mambare Rivers, in which " blood and hair" incidents are

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common ; but then, space is limited, and readers interested in these narratives are referred to the archives of the Government Printer's Department for the details, together with the true and particular account of the amount of copra, pearl-shell, beche-de-mer and gold sent away from these shores from year to year.

PORT MORESBY. A dark indigo sea, with a belt of palest green where the deep waters are shoaled by coral reefs near the shore, forms a lovely foreground as the ship approaches the settlement of Port Moresby, the seat of Government and port of entry for the central portion of British New Guinea.

W.H.Lucas.

Port Moresby, New Guinea.

The sun-kissed waves ripple on a stretch ot yellow sand, and further on a fringe of deep olive-green foliage marks the mangrove swamps that lie at the foot of the coastal range, undulating and rugged. In the background, fading away in a glorious sun-lit haze, rises the impassable Owen-Stanley Range, the backbone of Eastern New Guinea, its cloudblurred peaks towering skyward to a height of some 13,000 feet or more, with Mount Victoria faintly indicated against a pale blue canopy miles

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away in the distance. As one nears the land the " deep blue sea" changes to a beautiful green, the barren-looking hills that gird the shore appear sparsely covered with stunted gums and thirsty, sun-dried grass, rising and falling in grand irregular lines as they were thrown up by Nature's hand thousands of years ago. On the hillside to the right of the eastern point which guards the entrance to the harbour is seen the Resident Judge's house, a plain land-mark along the frowning coastline ; and further to the right are the native gardens, reached by a winding road, which leads from the port, over the hills, to the beach in front of

Village, Port Moresby, New Guinea.

the Judge's residence. On rounding the point, the vessel comes up to her anchorage in front of Ela, the European quarter of the port, nestling in the shelter of the rugged gum-clad hills, which rise and fall from east to west in an irregular, quaint outline in the form of a horse-shoe. About three miles to the north-westward, and approached by a Government road, are three native villages, built of straw-thatched huts perched on

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high, upright stakes, that in some cases run far into the shallow water. On the hills above these villages are patches of bananas, cocoa nuts, paw-paws, yams, taro, native pumpkins and beans, all tended by the native women, to whose lot falls the work of husbandry after the ground has been tilled and fenced by their lords and masters. Dotted about to the southward are Daugo and several other picturesque coral islands, and darting to and fro, some propelled by caras (paddles), and some gracefully bending under quaintly-shaped mat sails, are native canoes bent on fishing excursions or trade with the neighbouring islands. At Ela are the Government offices, official quarters, court house, customs house, gaol, Government stores, and Messrs. Burns, Philp & Company's store, where all the wants of the settlement, from the proverbial needle to the anchor, are supplied. On the way to the native villages one passes the police head-quarters and the Commandant's bungalow, and, further on, between the police barracks and Hanuabada â&#x20AC;&#x201D;the first of the native villagesâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;is Government House, an unpretentious building, with whitewashed galvanised-iron roof and wide verandahs. The Governor's residence is in no way a striking structure. It is sadly in need of repair, both inside and out, and the furniture might be renewed with advantage. Although the three or four days' stay which the steamer makes at Port Moresby will give the traveller an opportunity of seeing much that is of deep interest, yet, if time serves and he can land his goods and chattels and remain till the return trip (about six weeks), he can put in a period of pleasure and, perhaps, profit, which will always remain a bright spot in his life's journey. To the naturalist and collector the field of exploration is practically unlimited, and he who would wish for a better or happier climate in which to carry on his researches than that of the Astrolabe Mountains must indeed be hard to please. Mount Warirata, one of the Astrolabe Mountains, and distant about 22 miles from the port, is the health resort of the district, and the top of the mountain being flat and very fertile, the land is being taken up for cocoa and coffee growing, for which, judging by the look of the plantations, now in their infancy, there should be a great future, both in this and many other parts of the country. A large number of English fruit trees and vines have also been planted at Warirata, and apples, cherries, peaches, mulberries, etc., etc., are all thriving remarkably well. About 15 miles further on is a plantation at a place called Sogeri, and this is also coming on very nicely. A visit to these two places, i.e., Warirata and Sogeri, well repays the visitor, and as horses, mules and carriers can

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always be hired at Port Moresby, it is one of the easiest and most pleasant things in the world to take a run into the mountains. From the brow of Warirata the prospect is unsurpassingly sublime. On the one hand you have the rolling ocean dotted with innumerable lovely little islands and sparkling in the summer sun, and on the land is a great undulating valley, threaded by the Brown, Laloki, Goldie and many other large rivers, rising on the other side into that wonderful chain of mountains, the Owen-Stanley range, which, rising tier above tier from the lower heights, at length reaches the top of that ponderous looking mass, Mount Victoria, 13,000 feet above the sea. The summit of this mountain, rising far above the clouds, was reached by Sir William MacGregor some years ago, and on that occasion he found icicles and hoar frost on the ground, but no snow. Descending again from the heights to the lowlands, a couple of weeks could be very pleasantly put in at the Laloki River and the big lagoons near it. On the " Big " Lagoon, as it is called, about seven miles from port, are to be found millions of wild fowl of every description, and a boat in which to reach them, whilst in the woods near at hand there are wallaby, pig, cassowary, goura pigeons of all sizes and colours, parrots, cockatoos to be had in plenty, and, occasionally, a bird of Paradise is met with, although he is gradually being driven further inland. The many islands in the vicinity are well worthy of a visit, and a sailing boat with a native crew can usually be obtained at very reasonable rates. Fairfax Harbour is another place of interest, and somewhat reminds one of Sydney Cove. An island in this harbour is the home of thousands of Torres Straits pigeons. Then there are the native villages to be considered. The cry is usually, "The black man must go," but here, since the advent of the white man, a village of 700 souls has risen to 1,200 since 1890. There are many villages round Port Moresby, principal among which are Hanuabada. Tanuabada and Elevara. The natives living at Hanuabada, Koitapu and Elevara, the three villages by the sea near Port Moresby, all belong to the Motuan tribe, and speak the Motuan dialect. They are a peaceful, contented tribe, now living in perfect harmony, though years ago they were the most formidable pirates on the co.ist. Their depredations used to extend as far as Yule Island, 60 miles away to the south-east, and almost as far in an opposite direction. There was a perpetual feud between these people and the Motu Motuans formanyyears, until they had each eventually stolen so many women belonging to the other tribe that the inter-marrying brought about a sort of truce, and they agreed to combine for their mutual protection against the hill tribes, which

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have throughout the settlement, until very recently, proved hostile to those residing by the sea. Time, assisted by the efforts of the missionaries and the administrator, has at length brought about the establishment of friendly relations between most of the tribes near about the various white settlements, and the old tribal feuds between the hillsmen and the coastal born are, happily, affairs of the past. As an interesting example of the trust reposed by one tribe in another, the strange custom which obtains among theMotuans is rather remarkable. At certain seasons of the year, when the winds serve, the Motuan men, from these villages by the sea, all migrate to Motu-Motu, Kerema, and other native settlements on the Papuan Gulf with their " Lakatoi" (trading canoes) laden with pots, in the manufacture of which their women excel. These earthenware pots, or " uros," as the natives call them, they exchange for sago with the people they visit, and return again with a fair wind. While the Motuans are away on these " Iri," or trading expeditions, which oftentimes last for two or three months, the Hulas, a tribe living about 60 miles east of Port Moresby, arrive at the settlement, and by fishing, contrive to maintain the wives and families of the absentees. On the return of the traders, the Hulas receive sago in payment for their labours, when they return to their own village until the next " I r i " is undertaken by the Motuans. This curious arrangement appears to work remarkably well, and its success speaks volumes for the honesty and morals of the natives. The three villages by the sea are composed of picturesque rush and grass houses, built upon stakes about 10 feet high driven into the shingle, the first two, Hanuabada and Koitaupau, situated on the shores of the bay, and the third, Elevara, being built right in the water, against a small island of the same name. The framework of the hut is composed of strong saplings securely bound together by vines and native twine. So strong are these dwellings, that, though an occasional hurricane may unroof one of the European houses at Ela, the native-built affair seems to weather the worst storms of wind and rain. They usually contain each but one living room with a bamboo stage in front, and are decidedly picturesque with their gable roof and quaint unconventional lines, though whether they are as cleanly as they are artistic seems open to doubt. On the stage in front of their dwelling the natives loll about, smoking their " bau-baus " (native pipes), chewing their betel nut and lime, or making their rope and twine, which, by the way, is very neat and durable. Their pot-making, canoe-building and other industries are carried on on the sandy, dusty road in front of the huts, where the pigs, the native and mongrel curs, kangaroo rats, fowls and other village pets disport themselves at their own sweet will, eating stray pieces of copra

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and refuse, and intermingling with the piccaninnies with charming sociability. Although the native hut, and indeed the native village often leaves much to be desired on the score of cleanliness, the Motuan is scrupulously clean as to his body. The youngsters live in the water, despite the sharks and alligators, and everyone in the village has a dip at least once a day. They are exceedingly fine swimmers, the women

Native House. New Guinea. especially excelling in this exercise, and use a hand-over-hand stroke which propels them at a great speed through the water. They are also born boatmen, and manage their quaint, clumsy-looking outrigger canoes with surprising skill. Most of the " boys " near the port are quite expert with the sculls, and can manage a skiff with the greatest ease. Nothing gives them greater pleasure than a sail or a row. and a boat's crew can

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always be recruited by the expenditure of a small amount of tobacco. There are not many valuable curios to be picked up in or about Port Moresby, though native fishing nets, crude fish spears, earthenware pots, ramis and stuffed birds of paradise can be obtained in exchange for to bacco, coloured calico, pipes and such European knickknacks as the heart of the savage yearneth for. Beside the villages close to the port are those of Baruni, Pari, Babikari. Noime and Tatana. The majority of these villages are inhabited by Motuans and Pari, but some of the natives belong to the Koitapuan tribe, which formerly possessed the whole of this part of the country. So, whilst at Hanuabada the language is Motuan, at Baruni, a mile and a half distant, the Koitapuan is spoken, although they also understand Motuan very well. A ride of about five miles over a splendid and interesting track brings the visitor to Pari, a large village on the sea coast to the east of Port Moresby; and here, on dismounting at the native teacher's house (London Missionary Society), he is bound to be regaled with a draught of delicious, fresh cocoanut milk. This hospitable teacher (a Samoan) always presses visitors to remain to lunch, and if they accept, a right royal feast is placed before you â&#x20AC;&#x201D;fowl, wallaby, pigeon, pig, taro, yams, sweet potato, and other native food in profusion, with pineapple, bananas and oranges as dessert. The fowl, in particular, is cooked in such a fashion that even a Lucullus could find no fault with it. On moonlight nights the natives have occasionally great dances in their villages, which, though they may not suggest all the grace and elegance of the minuet, are at least more pleasant to look upon than much of the dancing, so called, which one sees performed in the nicest possible circles of modern fashionable society. The " soes " of the Motuans are of great antiquity, and are remarkably complicated and, presumably, difficult of execution. It is not every visitor to Port Moresby who is favoured with a native dance ; but should the opportunity arise, it is not to be thrown away on any account, for the thing itself, apart from its intrinsic merits, is a decided novelty. The very spectacle of some 200 young bucks and maidens, decorated in the most elaborate manner with cockatoo feathers, cassowary plumes, dog's-teeth necklaces, pearl shells, wisps of rushes, sweet-smelling herbs, and hibiscus blossoms, their bodies gleaming in the moonlight, and their bare feet keeping time to the regular beat of 60 or 70 drums, is one worth witnessing. The young maidens, most graceful creatures, in their artistic ramis of many-coloured grasses, with their luxuriant hair decorated with coronets and crowns of fragrant frangipanni blossoms, take their places beside the young men. Then the evolutions commence, the men beating their drums and

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chanting the dance music, accompanied by the maidens, whose tuneful voices blend well with the deep bass notes of their male companions. Their ramis gracefully floating in the wind as the women, dancing a step, sway their hips from side to side in time to the music. In two long lines, face to face, the men and women alternating along the ranks, or in pairs, or three abreast, they dance to a six-eight time, always in perfect harmony, each evolution being performed without any audible word of command, in perfect unison, by the whole of the dancers. Now they are spearing fish in pantomime, then they are gathering in their yam harvest, or, again, preparing for war, and all the while the drums beat and the scrunching footsteps keep the most perfect time to the somewhat monotonous chant. In the soft moonlight, beside the sea, which leaves a phosphorescent glow behind it as it washes the beach, with the sombre palms for a background, the torch-lit, bronze-like figures of the dancers present an appearance most delightfully picturesque. These "soes" often last until far into the morning, the natives never seeming to weary until the last spectator has departed or the old people in the village get tired of the noise.

YULE ISLAND. A pleasant run of six hours or so brings the steamer to Yule (or Lolo) Island, which is situated close to the south of Au Point, and is about four miles long and one and a half miles broad. As the steamer approaches the land the eye is caught by a peak 526 feet high, situated on the southeast end of the island, and when the vessel swings round at her moor ings about one and a half miles from the western shore, the rocky points and sandy beaches, fronted in the southern part by coral reefs, come clearly into view. Verdure-clad hills, rich in tropical foliage, slope gently to the sea, and densely-wooded country is seen to the northward, whilst dotted about the slopes near the shore are the houses of the mission station, with the picturesque figures of the natives flitting to and fro. This island was first visited by H.M.S. " Basilisk," in 1873-4, when the natives were found to be friendly and hospitable, as, indeed, they have always proved themselves since. On landing at the rough jetty which has been thrown out by the settlers, the visitor is bound to be met by one of the Fathers of the Sacred Heart Mission, which practically holds sway over the island, and the missionaries attached to which will do everything in their power to make the brief stay as enjoyable as possible. A good cup of tea with delicious new milk and fresh butter and rolls (which have become luxuries by this time) will possibly be

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discussed in the shade of the mission house; and after an interesting chat with the kindly Fathers, a start will be made for the native village, which lies over the hills about two miles from the station. T h e way leads through some exquisite scenery, and the visit to the Yule Islanders' homes will well repay any slight fatigue that the tramp in the sun involves. The natives here are of a somewhat darker copper colour than those found near Port Moresby and the Torres Straits, though their main characteristics are identical. The same kindly nature, the same friendliness towards the white man, and the same superlative honesty distinguish these delightful people, who welcome the visitor to their village with unfeigned hospitality. The curly-headed little piccaninies will cluster round one, clamouring for 'â&#x20AC;˘ Bacca," which is prized by old and young alike,, while their elders will tentatively offer spears and arrows in exchange for the same commodity. Although a good deal of amusement may be derived from these trading transactions with the producers themselves, they are rarely attended with any commercial advantage to the purchaser. It is quite a mistake to imagine that the native does not know the value of his wares. On the contrary, he is a very good business man, and the casual visitor in search of " curios " will usually find he can do better with the middlemen, the regular traders, than he can with the child of nature, who only produces one thing at a time, and invariably asks about six times as much for it as he is eventually inclined to accept. Thus, after having bargained for half an hour for the purchase of spears, and with difficulty obtained half a dozen at the price of three sticks of tobacco apiece, the visitor will be disgusted to find that the natives are only too glad to accept half a stick for the same articles in any quantity when he shows signs of leaving the village. There are about 300 natives in the island, all of whom have been converted to the Roman Catholic faith by the Sacred Heart Mission, an organisation which, established here in 1883, has certainly assisted considerably the moral and social progress of the New Guinea native. From Yule Island the course lies once more past Port Moresby, and the vessel is headed for

SAMARAI, which is situated about 300 miles in a north-easterly direction from Yule Island. On the port side, as the vessel steams about five miles from the shore, the mighty Owen-Stanley range, towering up to the sky, accentuates the land line, while to starboard the shimmering sea dances and ripples in the sunlight, a plain of sapphire and silver. Then, as the ship nears her destination, on the horizon appears a nebulous sort of haze, which,

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on closer inspection, turns out to be a group of cocoanut-covered islands dotted about the sea. White schooners, belonging to the traders and pearlfishers, are riding at anchor in the China Channel, and far in the distance in the golden scintillating haze, dark sails indicate the presence of native canoes and catamarans darting to and fro among the coral islands like huge sea-birds riding on the crest of the waves. Slowly the ship is brought up to the wharf, and then, tumbling over the side, laughing and chattering, come the happy-go-lucky natives, bent on barter, or, possibly, only attracted by idle curiosity, until the deck is crowded with little knots of picturesque figures, and the air is full of pigeon English, the rattle of chains, the whirr of winches, and the straining of hawsers. " A Paradise of palms, set in a sapphire sea," exactly describes Samarai, the native penal settlement and the port of entry for the eastern portion of British New Guinea. As far as the eye can wander over the tiny island, which is only about four cables long by two and a-half wide, and culminates in a cone-shaped hill in the centre, everywhere is the graceful cocoanut palm, waving in the sunlight and casting its sombre shadows on the pineapples and crotons beneath. Girt by a fringing coral reef, which, but for a break of about 300 yards on the north-west side, completely surrounds it, the island, nevertheless, possesses a good anchorage, where a fine vessel, of the " Moresby " type, can lie easily against the wharf, there being a depth of 20 feet at low water at this place. The port can also be approached by five or six different channels. The tides in the China Strait about Samarai are very strong, and are subject to considerable diurnal inequality, the phenomena connected with them being apparently irregular with regard to time, height and velocity. There are no native villages on the island, and the principal buildings comprise the magistrate's quarters, customs house, post office and bond, the gaol, church, quarters for the constabulary, two stores and three licensed hotels. All the walks and avenues on the island are beautifully kept, and resemble a lovely private park more than a public village. Owing to the fact that Samarai is the head-quarters of the pearling industry in New Guinea, and is also the port of call for miners who are continually going to and coming from the Mambare and Sudest goldfields, the population of course fluctuates a good deal, but the regular European settlement is very small, not exceeding 20 souls, all told. About three or four days' stay is usually made at this lovely port, which enables the sight-seer to visit the neighbouring islands, on which many native villages abound. The most pleasurable way of getting about is by means of a native canoe, which, with "boys " to carry

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one's guns, cameras, & c , can be hired for a trifling sum, and which is placed at the command of the traveller and his party during the stay of the steamer. There are so many points of interest that it is difficult, off hand, to decide which shall be visited first, though the matter will most likely be settled by a challenge from the Reverend Abel, the head of the London Missionary Society's Mission at Quato, for an eleven of the ship to play a cricket match against his " boys." Should such an invitation arrive, take the advice of one who has been there, and give your sailing orders for Quato, for though you will possibly get a sound

Sariba, near Samarai, B.N.G.

thrashing at the game, you will have such a good day's fun that you will reckon your time well spent. Sariba (or Hayter) Island, which is about three or four miles from Samarai, and divided from the south-eastern extremity of New Guinea by the China Strait, will well repay a visit. There are on this island—which is about five miles long by two and a half miles broad—a large number of native villages, the inhabitants being a delightfully friendly and interesting people, living in the most picturesque of dwellings, and ready to join in any fun that may be going.

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Most of the villages will be found on the west and south-west shores of the island, but half way up Mount Bilo-bilolo, which rises in a bluntly conical shape to about 970 feet, and which, by the way, is reached by a terribly rough and tangled path, is a collection of wellbuilt huts, surrounded by cultivated patches, which extend almost to the summit. Here an enjoyable stay of an hour or so can be made, the natives being ready to trade anything, from a club to a basket of lemons or yams, while some exceedingly good sport can be found among the dense scrub, where Torres Strait pigeons and all sorts of parrots abound. Doini (or Blanchard) Island, situated about six miles from Samarai, in a southerly direction, also contains several villages, which will appeal to the traveller with a taste for the artistic. The island is about two miles long by one mile broad, and, like Sariba, affords some excellent sport for the gun. Two miles to the south-west of Samarai is Rojeia (Health) Island, a verdant islet with a fine peak 1215 feet high on the eastern side. There are quite a number of snug little villages nestling beneath the shadow of the mountain, where a few curios may be obtained, though, as I have hinted before, the curio hunter will get much better value for his money, and much finer specimens of native art, from the trading schooners or stores. To leave Samarai without having paid a visit to one of the pearling schooners is to have missed an experience which may not possibly again present itself. There are quite a number of these craft continually plying their trade in the channel, and arrangements can easily be made with the owners, who, like everyone else in these hospitable latitudes, appear to lay themselves out to give the visitor a real good time. The ships are usually manned by a native crew, the divers being generally Europeans or Japs. Some of these men go down to a depth of 25 or 26 fathoms, for most of the best shell about here is found in the deeper water. Before closing this brief account of British New Guinea, which has been confined only to those ports at which the regular steamers call, a short general description of the Papuan inhabitants of that wonderful island may prove of interest. The aboriginal native population of the possession has been variously estimated at between 400,000 and 500,000. They are pure Papuans, and may be described generally as a barbaric race. Many of them are still cannibals, most of them are warlike, and all of them are honest. In appearance, though mostly below the average height, as considered from a European point of view, they

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are decidedly picturesque, being well formed and graceful, and possessed of by no means ill-looking faces. Their heads, features, and colour vary so much that they cannot be classed under any one type. Their hair, which is wiry and luxuriant, they wear mostly combed back over their shoulders, and often held off the forehead by bands of fibre or beads, decorating it with fancy combs, feathers, or hibiscus blossoms. Some of the coastal men and women apply lime to their hair, either with the fixed intention to dye it or for the purpose of destroying parasites, and this practice turns it into a light red colour. In agriculture, house and canoe building, wood carving, pottery making, and in several of the minor arts of life they have obtained a fair degree of proficiency. They fully recognise the rights of property, including the individual ownership of land. Although in their blood feuds " to obtain payment " in blood for a slain relative or tribesman they never, in their wild state, hesitate to slaughter even women or children, they are, strange to say, in natural disposition, neither ruthless nor cruel. They are cheerful and communicative, very affectionate in their domestic relations, and have a keen sense of humour. The Papuan is very wiry, and is capable of doing a very good day's work, though his inclinations do not usually trend in that direction. He is naturally a stranger to anything like regular toil, and he seems to have set his face against acquiring so pernicious a habit as earning his bread by the sweat of his brow. His wants are simple and few, and almost all of them are gratified with very little exertion on his part. Cocoanuts, yams, breadfruit, bananas, sago and taro form his principal articles of diet. Cocoanuts grow everywhere in abundance ; bananas, breadfruit and taro are plentiful all over the island ; while sago grows wild in the Papuan Gulf and many other spots. H e varies his diet with pig, which thrives about his village ; fish, which he is an adept at spearing; dog, which is as easily obtainable as the pig; and wallaby, which he can readily find in the scrub near his home. Most of the root foods have to be cultivated, but this is chiefly done by the women, the men's share in the work being confined to the tilling and clearing of the ground about the planting season, and the fencing of the plot when the crops appear. Many of the natives bury their dead beside their houses, but others place the bodies on raised platforms some distance from the village, and when the flesh disappears from the bones, take the skulls and keep them in a hut built for the purpose. They do not appear to have any particular religion of their own, unless, indeed, their unstinted worship of Nature may be called a religion ; but many of their dancing and war songs, which even the singers are unable to interpret, and which have been handed

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down from ancient centuries, point to some sacred observances, now forgotten, that were in vogue years ago, although time has altered their meaning, and they have lost all religious significance. They are very superstitious and somewhat mercenary, and it is quite a common thing for one tribe to be subsidised by another to provide wind, rain and plentiful harvests from land and sea. Should a man be sick or die, it is obvious to his relatives that he has been invisibly speared by some earthly foe. Should no fish nor wallaby fall to their snares or spears, a breach of contract on the part of some local sorcerer accounts for the bad luck. To such simple causes as the above many of the old-time inter-tribal wars might have been traced, and, indeed, their deep-rooted superstitions are accountable for much trouble at the present day. Their ideas about a future state are very vague and visionary, though, as with the Chinese, it is no uncommon custom for food to be placed beside their graves to support the dead during the long journey to the great hereafter. Feasting, dancing, national chants and, occasionally, cannibalistic luxuries usurp with these people the functions and religious ceremonies common with more civilised races. Their dubus, or carved pillar temples, are, presumably, associated with religious or, rather, superstitious conceptions ; but so far as has been ascertained, at least they have no heathen god. Like most superstitious people, the Papuans are great believers in charms, and many of them always wear a number of these strange ornaments about their persons. The fighting charm of the north-east coast native is made of boars' tusks, standing out from an oval-shaped framework of string worn round the face, and kept in position by a kind of bit which is held firmly between their teeth. In their war-paint of red and white, with their lips saturated with the red juice of the betel, to say nothing of this weird sort of frame, their faces present a most ferocious and revolting appearance. The war charm, of course, affords them immunity from wounds and death during the battle, just as the love charm is supposed to make the wearer irresistible in the eyes of the fair sex. One man, a native of the Taburi tribe, showed a visitor a charm, by the aid of which he said he had married " three fellow mary " (three wives), but judging from the readiness with which he parted from it for a tomahawk, it would appear that with him marriage had proved a failure. The natives are all keen sportsmen, and many of the mountain tribes are expert in the use of spear, bow and sling, while those on the coast excel in boat craft, fishing, and aquatics generally. Strange to say, the mountaineers are nearly all unable to swim. As one gets

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further into the interior, the natives appear more hardy and of finer physique. They are much more warlike than the coastal tribes, and inter-tribal fights are incessant. Many of them build tree-houses for the purposes of defence from external enemies, and others again build strong stockades around their villages with the same object. It is almost impossible for a stranger to come among these people without their knowing, and woe betide the stranger if he comes as an enemy, though when once friendly relations have been established with a tribe, they are to be entirely depended upon. The clothing of the natives varies considerably, as do their language, manners and customs. Anything, from a piece of native string to a sort of short petticoat, does for the men, while the women nearly all wear a rami of prettilyworked grasses, which, secured round the waist, falls gracefully over their hips and thighs. Many of the women are elaborately tatooed all over the upper portion of their bodies, while the men often mutilate their faces in the same manner, and, in addition, stick a piece of wood or bone through the septum of the nose. All the mountain tribes use stone clubs, many of which are of fantastic design and great age. The manufacture of these clubs has become almost a lost art, and they are highly prized as curios on this account. The Papuan, like most savages, indulges to excess in the betel nut, and, in addition, is a confirmed smoker, even tiny children indulging in the " fragrant weed " from a very tender age. They have a most economical method of smoking by means of a bau bau, a long piece of bamboo, into which sufficient smoke is drawn and is then handed from mouth to mouth as the smokers sit round and chat. Their villages, most of which differ in design, are mostly clean, and the inhabitants are free from infectious diseases, with the exception of a skin complaint which afflicts a small percentage of those living near the sea, but is easily cured. There is a sort of native currency throughout the possession, which consists of very small cowrie shells threaded on twine, and varying in value according to the distance from the coast where they are obtained. Most of the trading between natives, however, is done in kind, the regular currency of shell money being principally confined to the island tribes. Our next port of call, about 400 miles distant, is

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NEW BRITAIN. T H E north-east coast of New Ireland was discovered by Le Maire and Schouten in 1616, and was also seen by Tasman in 1643. It w a s c o n _ sidered by these navigators to form a portion of the large island of New Guinea. This idea was dispelled by Dampier, who, in 1700, sailed through the strait now bearing his name. In 1767 Carteret found that the so-called St. George's Bay of Dampier was in reality a strait separating two distinct islands; thenceforth the eastern one was named New Ireland and the western one New Britain, the strait separating them being named St. George's Channel. The south side of New Britain was examined by Dampier, and was afterwards more exactly described by the celebrated D'Urville, though seen during very adverse weather. On the north side D'Entrecasteaux is the principal authority, although his examinations were but partial, Notwithstanding the fact that further information has been obtained from the explorations of German war vessels, and also from the missionaries who have visited the islands, they are both, and especially New Britain, still imperfectly known. Resident traders, who have sailed along uncharted portions of the coast, assert that in places New Britain is fully 30 miles wider than shown on existing maps. The coast line only has been touched by explorers, and a few miles inland the islands are absolutely unknown, and offer a splendid field for future investigations. Entering St. George's Channel, between the two islands of New Britain and New Ireland, a stiff current checks the progress of the steamer. The lofty hills of New Britain grow bluer and bluer, and the white mists drift lazily along their rugged sides, clearing off gradually, leaving fleecy strips of white lying in the valleys or streaming with the wind from the topmost peaks. Presently a little blue cloud appears fluttering on the horizon, followed shortly by another. These two appear and disappear at intervals, seeming to sway and float for a while just above the waterline. Gradually they become more permanent, and form into the shape of hummocky islands ; then the intervening lowland rises from the sea, and at last the peaks stand revealed â&#x20AC;&#x201D; the great extinct volcanoes, " Mother " and " Daughter." Like sentinels watching over the smooth water of Blanche Bay, they stand with their seamed and rugged sides

ISLAND LINE OF STEAMERS.


BURNS, PHILP & COMPANY'S (Ltd.)

clad in dense growth of trees and vines, or swept with great swaths of long green cutting grass. Nestling under their shadow lies a small active volcano which the natives call Awurruwa, whose gaping crater is distinctly visible from the water. Patches of bright yellow sulphur are seen round the broken edges, and the sides are marked by great cascades of loose stones streaming down to the thick verdure clothing the base. This volcano was last in violent eruption in 1878, when an island 60 feet in height was thrown up on the western shore of Blanche Bay.

HERBERTSHOHE. Upon entering Blanche Bay the principal settlement, Herbertshohe, appears. At first sight the land along the shore seems to be covered with an immense vineyard, the vines lying in serried rows far back towards the hills ; but as the steamer approaches and the plantation becomes more distinctly visible, it is seen that the serried rows are cocoanut trees. To the visitor unacquainted with the extent to which the cocos nucifera is cultivated in these latitudes, the sight of these plantations is a veritable revelation. There are upwards of 7,000 acres in one unbroken strip extending for several miles along the shore, and about four or five miles inland. Planted uniformly 25 feet apart, the graceful palms bear, year in and year out, their perennial crops of nutsâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;the source of most of the wealth of the Western Pacific. The greater portion of this cultivated strip belongs to the firm of E. E. Forsayth, who own 3,000 acres of cocoanuts in full bearing; the New Guinea Company own upwards of 2,000 acres; M. Mouton, the sole surviving member of the ill-fated Marquis de Ray's expedition left in the island, owns 1,000 acres, and there are some smaller holdings. Fringing the beach are the planters' houses, the dwellings and offices of the New Guinea Company's officials, the hospital, doctor's residence, and last, but largest, the cathedral of the Roman Catholic mission, with the bishop's palace adjoining. A little way back, crowning a steep hill, and approached by a winding, flower-bordered path, is situated the residence of Dr. Hahl, the Lieutenant-Governor. H e is second in command to the Landeshauptmann, or Governor, who resides at Stephansort, German New Guinea, and under him has jurisdiction over the Bismarck Archipelago, which comprises New Britain, New Ireland, and the Duke of York Islands. Since the German flag was hoisted here in 1886, these names have been changed to Neu Pommern, Neu Mecklenburg, and Neu Lauenburg.

Head Officeâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;


ISLAND LINE OF STEAMERS.

- i'~,

10 Bridge Street, Sydney.


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In the bay lie a number of small craft, cutters and schooners, engaged in the island trade, collecting valuable cargoes of copra, beche-de-mer, pearl-shell, tortoise-shell, and other products, which are despatched to Singapore or Germany by the Norddeutscher-Lloyd steamers, calling every alternate month, or to Sydney by the steamers of Burns, Philp & Company.

MATUPI. About eight miles from Heibertshohe, and lying close under the shadow of the " Mother" and "Daughter," is the island of Matupi, upon which Messrs. Hernsheim and Co. have their trading station and store. This is a most interesting island, in that it contains the three elements of trade, mission, and unimproved savagery. It is a low, sandy islet, thickly planted with cocoanuts. In the centre the trading firm have their agent's house, and on the shore the store, employees' houses, jetties, etc., with their sailing craft and neat little steam launch anchored near the beach. To the right lie the large school-house and the huts of the natives belonging to the Wesleyan mission, while to the left cluster the huts of the unregenerate natives, who, according to the native teacher, will inevitably " burn up alonga pira " eventually. The schoolhouse is a long building, erected somewhat in the native style, but with lofty arched roof and windows. It is furnished with mats, upon which the scholars seat themselves when summoned by the blowing of a huge conch shell. A reading-desk is placed at one end, flanked by a blackboard, whereon sums, such as " 346 bulumokau at ^"43 19s. 2 ^ d , " are worked out for the edification and instruction of the youthful Matupians. For the benefit of the uninitiated, it may be explained that " bulumokau" is a compound pigeon English term, signifying cattle. The extraordinary value set upon the beastsâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;a price that would gladden the heart of any Australian grazierâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;may possibly be designed to impress the native mind with the costly nature of beef. They are a very mixed lot, these natives, and it appears doubtful whether any are of the true, original inhabitants, but rather emigrants of Polynesian and Micronesian origin, far removed in type and customs from the true Papuans. These latter keep to the hills, and are a source of trouble from time to time, as they descend and make raids on the comparatively inoffensive shore-dwellers. The hill tribes are fierce, turbulent, and cannibalistic, constantly at war with each other and with the outsiders. It is a significant fact that, notwithstanding the advanced state of civilisation and the number of European residents in and around

Head Officeâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;


ISLAND LINE OF STEAMERS.

Blanche Bay, the greatest distance inland penetrated by a white man is 12 miles. This distance was travelled in August, 1898, by a party consisting of some officers and men of H.I.G.M.S. "Falke," Mr. Forsayth and the Rev. Mr. Fellman, accompanied by a number of native servants. Some of the hill tribes were encountered, and amongst them were many who had never before seen a white man. The coast natives are a happy-looking, lightly-clad lot of betelchewers. From the "children of six or seven up to the old men and women, all have their " kit," consisting of a supply of betel nut, areca, and lime pot, and it is positively appalling to see the smile of an opencountenanced boy whose teeth, gums and tongue are stained a brilliant crimson with the juice of his combination chew. Long indulgence in the practice eventually blackens the teeth, and certainly the habit does not tend to improve the personal appearance of the betel-chewers. For clothing, a strip of bright-coloured calico, either twisted round the waist or fastened with a belt, is deemed sufficient by the adults, the children contenting themselves with the circumambient atmosphere, which, in all conscience, is warm enough. Earrings, nose-bars, necklaces, armlets and anklets are also worn, but rather for the purposes of ornament than as articles of clothing. The armlet serves also to hold the pipe and tobacco, though, in default of an armlet, they are occasionally stuck behind the ear. Their canoes are handy affairs, furnished with outriggers, and the larger ones are fitted with sails. A native and canoe can be hired for a few sticks of tobacco, and an enjoyable sail is to run across to Awurruwa, or round the island to the strange volcanic islet, the Beehive, which was shot up from the bottom of the bay in 1878. It is now covered with grass and small trees, but its sides are so steep as to be practically inaccessible. The excursionist with a tendency towards the accumulation of native curios will find plenty of material obtainable in exchange for strong trade tobacco, gay calico, or sordid cash. The kanakas are all sufficiently sophisticated to drive a hard bargain, and will generally demand a higher price than they are prepared eventually to accept. Reckless purchases by eager tourists and the officers of war vessels have tended to give the natives an extravagant idea of the value of some of their wares, so that, except for the fun of doing an independent deal with a child of Nature, it is preferable to purchase curios from the white traders, who will be found to have a larger and more varied stock. The natives are in the habit of offering their goods piecemeal, carefully concealing the extent of their holdings, and exposing only one object at a time. If

I

10 Bridge Street, Sydney.


io 4

W . H . Lucas.

BURNS, PHILP & COMPANY'S (Ltd.)

Beehive Rock, Matupi, N e w Britain. Blown up about 30 years ago during a Volcanic Eruption).

Head Officeâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;


ISLAND LINE OF STEAMERS.

this does not meet with approval, it is reluctantly withdrawn, and another slowly drawn from its hiding place in the bottom of the canoe. Young boys and women, with no stock-in-trade, will persistently "cadge "for tobacco, but withal in such a pleading way and with such good-humoured smiles, that it is difficult to resist their solicitations. They all smoke, even to the toddling infant, and it is no uncommon sight to see a twoyear-old, slung in a cloth on its mother's hip, after a drink from Nature's fount, reach up and take a dirty clay pipe from the maternal lips and enjoy a postprandial whiff. The islands form a most interesting hunting ground for the naturalist, birds being plentiful and of considerable variety. There are flocks of large scarlet and green parrots, called kalunga by the natives ; pigeons, bell-birds, large brown birds with harsh notes, onomatopeically designated kurukuk in the vernacular ; hornbills, and numbers of that remarkable and interesting bird, the megapode. This is a scrubdwelling hen, slightly larger than a pigeon, with—as its name implies— large and powerful feet. It scratches a hole about 2 feet in depth in the warm volcanic sand, deposits its huge brown egg—larger than a duck's egg —covers it up, and leaves it to be hatched by the warmth of the earth. The young bird emerges fully fledged, able to fly, and prepared to do battle against the world on its own account, the mother never troubling herself about her offspring after planting the egg. As may be imagined, the eggs are exposed to the raids of many foes. The huge monitor lizards dig them o u t ; the natives' dogs scratch them up and make kaikai (food) of them; and the kanakas themselves prize them highly as a breakfast dish, though they are rather strong in flavour to suit the European palate, except when used in making pastry. Plenty can be obtained from the natives, and it is both interesting and amusing to hatch a few, which can easily be done by placing them in a warm place for three weeks. If suitable food can be obtained, the chicks will live in captivity so long as the climate is suitable, but the cold soon kills them. Fish are not very plentiful, but a few large ones can be caught with the ordinary hook and line. The natives have a large number of balloonshaped traps buoyed out in the bay. These are not baited in any way, but the bonito get in when endeavouring to escape from sharks. Blanche Bay is the home and breeding place of the nautilus, and other marine shells are plentiful, while the searcher after land shells can secure the services of a keen-eyed native to collect the " simall sell that stop along a leaf" for a few sticks of tobacco, though he will probably expose himself to the undisguised derision and contempt of the kanaka for spending time and valuables over articles that are " n o good kaikai."

10 Bridge Street, Sydney.


io6

B U R N S , PHILP & COMPANY'S (Ltd.)

MIOKO. Mioko is a trading station, situated on one of the Duke of York Islands, a few miles from Herbertshohe. It is prettily situated on a cleared point of land, with a reef-encircled lagoon spreading to one side, and deep vvater in front. A very extensive native village stretches along the shore, the huts clustering somewhat in the vicinity of the station, and becoming more scattered the further they are situated from that source of all that is sweet and light from the aboriginal point of view. Just opposite to the steamer's anchorage the house of the " Duk D u k " is situated. This mysterious individual appears to be a gentleman of

Making Fish Traps from Rattans, New Britain.

some importance in the conduct of native affairs. He wears a mask, and a coat of woven native grass reaching to the knees, and performs weird dances and contortions at certain times and seasons, for the benefit (or otherwise) of the natives, as circumstances appear to dictate. The path which runs between the Duk Duk's house and the shore is tambu* so far as women are concerned. No female dare pass over it *This word is spelt " tabu " generally in the Southern Pacific, but in these northern islands the sound is softened by the insertion of an " m " before the " b . "

Head Office-


ISLAND LINE OF STEAMERS.

without incurring some mysterious punishment, which is all the more terrible because no one knows its nature or whence it will come ! The ladies here (as elsewhere) are quite willing to take omne ignotum pro magnified, and nothing will induce them to break the tambu. Recently Dr. Hahl announced that he intended to break up this senseless custom of placing the tambu on native paths, and standing in front of this Duk Duk's house, he called the women to follow him along the track between it and the shore, promising that no harm would come to any of them if they obeyed him. They declined, firmly but respectfully. The Doctor urged ; the ladies retreated. He took one by the arm, and pressed her to accompany him along the barred way ; she lay down on the ground and flatly refused to budge an inch. So the tambu remains unbroken. Should the tourist be fortunate, he may possibly witness one of the native ceremonial dances, of which the following is a description of one seen by the writer :â&#x20AC;&#x201D; " Towards four o'clock, sounds of chanting came from the shore, varied occasionally by yelps, and spots of bright colour and white came flashing here and there amongst the brilliant green foliage. The native women were gathering from all quarters, and before long they had formed into a procession, and commenced to march along the path towards the trading station. Viewed through the glass, it was evident that they were got up in most elaborate style, and each one carried a green branch. Reaching an open spot, they halted, and burst out into a by no means unpleasing chant, followed by a series of yelps or barking ejaculations; after which they proceeded a little further, winding in and out amongst the brown-stemmed cocoanut palms, repeating the chant from time to time, until the Duk Duk's house was reached. Here a wide detour was made into the plantation, the chanting growing gradually fainter, and again bursting out as the procession appeared on the other side of the tambued house. At last they reached the final cluster of huts, and formed up again into ranks. By this time we had reached the shore in the boat, and, passing over the coral-strewn beach, we made our way into the throng of onlookers. The scene was interesting in the extreme. A dozen huts were grouped together under the wide-spreading trees; numbers of natives were gathered round, standing, squatting on the ground, or leaning against the walls, and in the centre the performers were ranged in rows to the number of about 50. With the exception of two fantastically-dressed masters of ceremonies, they were all women, each wearing a long wrapper or waist-cloth of red or white calico, reaching from the waist to the knees. Slung by a leafy band over the left shoulder was a plaited palm-leaf basket, resting under the arm, and in

10 Bridge Street, Sydney.


io8

BURNS, PHILP & COMPANY'S (Ltd.)

the right hand a long, broad-leaved reed with a small red flower was firmly held. Some had artistically-arranged head-dresses of lace-like fern leaves; others wore brilliant bunches of yellow and red foliage, fastened round the neck and hanging down the back. Some had painted the upper part of the face with white lime, in the form of a mask; while others wore patches of black or red on the cheeks or forehead. With the exception of the covering afforded by ferns, flowers and paint, they were naked from the waist upwards. They stood facing in one direction, chanting vigorously, and beating time by striking the ground with â&#x20AC;˘ the reed and the right foot simultaneously. After a few minutes the

M i o k o , D u k e of York, SMuw B r i t a i n .

chant ceased, and a perfect storm of yelps broke out. Then the masters of ceremonies ran in and out of the ranks, the performers faced round in the opposite direction, and the chanting began again. This was repeated four times with great vigour and heartiness, and the procession then re-formed, and, marching off, gradually dispersed. " We were informed that the performance was held out of respect to a woman who was in articulo mortis, or ' close up die,' as the natives expressed it, and the performers would receive gifts of shell money out of the deceased's estate as a reward for performing the complimentary dance."

Head Officeâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;


ISLAND LINE OF STEAMERS.

A HINT TO PHOTOGRAPHERS. By an Experienced

Amateur.

As many travellers take a camera with them on their peregrinations, a few hints on the subject of photography may not be out of place. In the first place, films or instantaneous plates are to be avoided, except for an emergency when the sun is not high enough (a rare event), or for dense foliage. If films are carried, they must be enclosed in a tin box ; a canister-shaped tin, just fitting the film, is the best, and care must be taken to close up the lid with gummed paper or sticking-plaster. The air is so humid in the coral seas that the greatest care is necessary to prevent the plates from spotting. The most satisfactory plates for this work are Ilford's chromatic or any good medium rapidity plate, but specially rapid plates, on account of their extreme sensitiveness, are to be generally avoided. The plates should be carried in a deed box, and kept continually wrapped in a blanket in the driest place that can be found. It is not advisable to develop plates during the trip, owing to the intense heat of an improvised dark room and the difficulties attending the washing, &c. Attempts to develop on board ship during great heat have resulted in the film actually floating off the plate in the developer, whereas all the plates carefully packed away directly after exposure turned out excellent pictures when subsequently developed ashore. A lamp is indispensable, and amateurs are recommended to construct their own. This is easily done with four sides of a fairly high, square cardboard box, a tin top and bottom, and a piece of texture of a ruby colour. The cardboard is easily folded flat, and is, besides, a non-conductor of heat, allowing the candle a fair life before it floats away in liquid grease, as it invariably does after ten minutes in an inferior ready-made lamp. In one side of the cardboard a square hole is cut, over which is pasted a double thickness of fabric, which affords just about sufficient light for any ordinary purposes. It is always well to take a yard or two of fabric, as it is indispensable for closing up puts and cracks when it is found necessary to change plates during the day. Apart from general rules, which are familiar to most amateurs, the necessary exposure can, of course, only be learnt by experience. It is, therefore, desirable, now and again, to take a trial photo, and develop it, when any errors on this head can be quickly detected and rectified. The tabloids put up by Burroughs and Welcome will be found the most convenient for developing on the trip, though the hypo is not to be relied on in this form.

10 Bridge Street, Sydney.


Advertisements.

no

Sure Crop Seeds. We solicit a trial of our Vegetable, Flower, and other Seeds of the purest and best quality. S E N D F O R OTJR CATALOGUE, POST

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12

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EXPORTERS of all kinds of Australian Produce, Copra, Wheat, Flour, Butter, Preserved Meats, &c, Sic. Consignments received and arranged for.


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Handbook of Information for Western Pacific Islands