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season will, doubtless, find their system somewhat relaxed at first, and be tempted to give way to lassitude ; but the human body soon becomes accustomed to any degree of temperature that can be borne without injurious effects. At all events, there are eight months in the year delightfully cool and pleasant, and by appropriating to out-of-door-labour the early portion, and the close of the day during the four hot months, as is done universally in the South of Europe, any unpleasantness arising from the excessive heat of the climate, during the four months of a semi-tropical Australian summer, may easily be obviated.
PECULIAR ADAPTATION OF THE TERRITORY OF COOKSLAND FOR
IMMEDIATE AND EXTENSIVE COLONIZATION.
Totâ regione potitus
multitudinem, quam secum duxerat, in agris collocavit.-CORN. NEP. Milt. II.
Having seized the whole of the Crimea, Governor Miltiades settled the large body of emigrants, whom he had carried out with him from Athens, on the Waste Lands.
The title of this Chapter suggests the inference which, it appears to me, we are fully warranted to draw from the facts and statements contained in the previous Chapters of this work. Indeed, I question whether there has ever been any portion of the vast Colonial Empire of Great Britain so admirably adapted for immediate and extensive colonization—as well from its soil and climate, and from the extent and variety of its productions, as from the facilities it affords for an extensive internal communication by means of steam-navigation-as the territory of Cooksland. With a steam-vessel plying daily, perhaps, between the future commercial capital of the Territory, and each of the navigable rivers that empty themselves along the whole line of coast, how very different would be the situation of an industrious family of free immigrants, possessed of a moderate extent of land on one of these rivers, from that of almost any settler of the same class in society and possessing the same extent of land in any of the British Provinces of North America ? Supposing, for example, that the emigrant were settled near the head of the navigation of the Clarence River, the farthest southward from the capital, the steamboat would leave his immediate vicinity for the latter early in the morning, and without employing an agent, he would embark himself with his parcel of wheat, maize, or barley ; his sweet potatoes, pine apples, or bananas ; his fatted pigs or poultry; his honey and bees'-wax, or his raw-silk and cotton, or perhaps with his pine or cedar boards and shingles, for the first market in the Colony. Stopping at the principal localities on the beautiful stream, to take in passengers and cargo, the steamboat would reach the mouth of the river sometime in the afternoon, and performing the ocean part of the voyage during the night, she would reach Toorbal Point early on the following morning. The settler would thus have the whole day before him to dispose of his produce in the chief town of the Territory, and to procure his supplies; and having transacted his business, he would be ready to embark again on his return, probably at six or eight in the evening, to enable the steamer to perform the ocean part of the voyage during the night, and to reach the mouth of the Clarence at break of day. The sail up the river would only occupy from five to eight hours longer, according to the number of stopping-places on the banks, and the settler would thus return to the bosom of his family in the course of the third day from his departure, with all his produce sold, and all his farm-supplies along with him, while the whole expense to and fro would be a mere trifle.
This is by no means an imaginary picture, but one that has already been realized in the Colony of New South Wales, wherever the benefits and blessings of steam-navigation are available in that colony. My brother, Mr Andrew Lang, J.P., of Dunmore, Hunter's River, is settled about forty miles from the mouth of the River Hunter, which disembogues at Newcastle, about seventy miles to the northward of Sydney; and
about fifteen or twenty years ago, when I had occasion to visit that part of the country, it took me regularly three days' hard riding over a rugged mountainous country to reach his place overland, the distance being upwards of 110 miles; and on that journey I have repeatedly been out two nights by the way, sleeping on the grass, wrapped up in a boat-cloak, by a fire we had kindled in the open forest. And when I contrived to go by water, the weekly sailing-packet, which would frequently occupy several days on the voyage, going only to the mouth of the river, I had to be rowed up or down by two boatmen the rest of the way, bivouacking generally for a few hours on the banks during the night, till the tide turned. In either case the delay, fatigue, and annoyances of the journey were great, and the expense serious. Now, however, there are four steamboats plying regularly on this course, making two voyages each, to and fro, every week; and as they start from Sydney at 10 P.M., when the business of the day is over, to perform the ocean part of the voyage during the night, and to ascend the river in the morning, I reach my brother's place, three miles from the head of the navigation of the river, before noon next day; while the whole expense of the trip is a mere trifle. The only interruption to this species of navigation is during the prevalence of a strong southerly or southeasterly gale, for at such times the steamboat bound to Sydney must remain at the mouth of the Hunter till the gale abates. This interruption, however, would be less felt along the coast of Cooksland; for in consequence of the superior mildness of the climate, the southerly gales are both less frequent and less violent there than they are to the southward.
Settlers located on any of the rivers within the Bay, -the Kumera-Kumera, the Logan, the Brisbane and its tributaries, the Pine River, and the Cabulture River, -would all be still more favourably situated for fre nt and rapid intercourse with the capital than those on the Clarence, the Richmond, and the Tweed; as steam
communication with any of these rivers would never be interrupted by any winds that blow in the Pacific.
I have already observed that Normanby Plains—a tract of 50,000 acres of land of the first quality for cultivation-are only eighteen miles, along a level country admirably adapted for a wooden railway, from the head of the navigation of the Brisbane and the Bremer, at Ipswich ; and the Darling Downs—a splendid tract of country, sufficiently extensive to receive and afford employment for the whole agricultural population of Scotland, with the land naturally clear and ready for the plough, at an elevation of two thousand feet above the level of the sea-are only forty-three miles from the same locality in the same direction ; the whole ascent and descent, by that wonderful cleft or fissure in the Coast Range of Mountains, Cunningham’s Gap, from the low country to the eastward to the elevated table-land to the westward of these mountains, being only five miles altogether. In short, I know of no country in the world that is better provided by nature with the means of extensive internal communication than Cooksland; and one has only to compare the circumstances of the ten thousand colonists that will ere long be located on the banks of the various navigable streams of that colony, steaming cheerily along with their produce under a cloudless sky to the capital of the territory, with those of the Canadian farmers lashing their weary bullocks over the miserable corduroy-roads of British America, up to the knees, perhaps, in mud or sleet and snow, to see how benignant nature, or rather the God of nature, has been to the one country, and how sparing, comparatively, of his benefits and blessings to the other.
Indeed, there is the utmost difference imaginable between the rigours of a Canadian winter of seven months' duration, and the paradisaical climate of Cooksland, in which the productions of both the temperate and the torrid zones grow harmoniously together, and the process of vegetation goes on uninterruptedly during