... part of the KellyGang story
Full text of article
The dominion of Australasia, if formed to morrow, would already take its place among the 10 or 12 great nations of the world, for it would have a public revenue of 14 millions annually, and a trade, including imports and exports, equal to 90 millions; but, of course, this question, like all other questions arising in free and self-governing countries, must be settled by the wisdom of the several Australian Parliaments. Reverting to the immediate object of this day's celebration, I would observe that the Parliament of Victoria nearly three years ago brought its railway system to Wodonga on the southern bank of the dividing River Murray, It now remains for the Government and Parliament of New South Wales to push on their railway system to Albury to meet ours. Mr Allen, the Speaker of the New South Wales Assembly, to whom I have referred, is now returning to Sydney overland, and my friend, Sir Hercules Robinson, the very able Governor of New South Wales, is also about to travel overland to Melbourne, in order to pay me a visit next month, when I may mention that I have asked the Governors of all the Australasian colonies to meet me in the new Government-house at Melbourne. (Applause.)
I rather fancy that these two great functionaries, the Governor and the Speaker, after bumping over the 200 miles of bushroads which still separate the end of their railway from ours will be inclined to exercise all their influence in favour of pushing the railway system of their colony to the border. They will be disposed to do so I think from physical feelings as well as from political interest (Laughter.) I have been requested to propose the toast of "Prosperity to the Beechworth Railway and to the District". I have very great pleasure in asking you to join with me in this toast. I was greatly pleased with the railway, which I saw for the first time today. I think the construction of the ten miles of line from Everton to Beechworth reflects great credit on my friend, Mr Higinbotham, and on all concerned. The gradients are as steep as one in thirty, and I believe there are no such gradients in any other part of the world, except on the approaches of some of the Alpine railways, which of course are very weak and mild in comparison with this railway. (Laughter,) You will, I am sure, fully appreciate the advantages of railway communication, I have much pleasure in proposing the toast of " Prosperity to the Beechworth Railway and the District." (Cheers.) The toast was received with enthusiasm.
Mr FREDERICK BROWN responded to the toast. He remarked that he recollected the time when the journey from Melbourne to Beechworth had to be performed in a two wheel cart, the fare being £12, and the journey taking three days. Afterwards a four-wheeled coach was started, and the proprietors received a demonstration at Beechworth scarcely less warm than the present. The district had long agitated for railway communication, and they were proud that their efforts were now crowned with success.
Mr TELFORD, the vice chairman, proposed the toast of "The Ministry," coupling with it the name of Mr Kerferd. Mr KERFERD, who was received with loud cheers, said he had to thank the meeting on behalf of his colleagues for the cordial manner in which the toast had been received. The object which so many had met to celebrate that day, viz., the completion of railway communication between Beechworth and Melbourne, had been for many years a dream, but now it was a reality. To-morrow any person could take a ticket and go right through to Melbourne. This was accomplished solely by the energy and perseverance of the men of Beechworth. (Cheers.) They had already heard how the North- Eastern line had given a profit of £24,000 for one year; but, again, it might be said that that had also been caused by the energy of the men of Beechworth, as they had been always urging it on the Government until it was carried out.
This document gives you the text of the report about the KellyGang for this day. The text has been retyped from a microfiche copy of the original. We have taken care to reproduce this document but areas of the original text may been damaged. We also apologise for any typographical errors.