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of E. longitude. In 1882 the Queensland Government had sent
Captain Chester to annex it, but the act was disallowed at home.
In December 1884 a German squadron hoisted the German flag
on the north coast of New Guinea, from the I4ist meridian to
Huon Gulf, and in Admiralty, Hermit, Anchorite, New Britain,
and New Ireland groups, the latter being named King William's
Land. The discovery of New Guinea dates back to 1526, when
the island was sighted by Don George de Menesis, a Portuguese
sailor, who was driven out of his course in voyaging from Malacca
to the Moluccas. He called it Papua. In 1643 Abel Tasman
explored part of the coast, and in 1699 Dampier circumnavigated
the island. In 1770 Cook sailed along the coast, and in 1792
Dentrecasteaux visited it. In 1846-50 Captain Owen Stanley sur-
veyed a portion of the coast. The earliest attempt at settlement
by Europeans was made by a Dutchman, Captain Steenboem, in
1828 ; but the establishment of the London Missionary Society in
1871 resulted in throwing most light upon the island. In 1873
Captain Moresby discovered and named Port Moresby on the
south-east coast. The British authorities were induced to annex

Appendices 323

South-East Guinea, from the fear lest any European Power should
plant itself there as a menace to Australia, or convert any portion
of it into a penal settlement, as France has converted New Cale-

Area of New Guinea. 305,900 square miles, of which it is
calculated 86,360 are British, 68,785 German, and 150,755 Dutch.
It is 1400 miles in length, and 450 miles in breadth.

Physical Features. 'An extended map of New Guinea looks
much like a dromedary. The head rises from Geelvink Bay on
the north, and the throat is formed by the M'Clure inlet on the
west. Then eastward from Geelvink Bay the island increases in
bulk until you come to the broadest part, about 450 miles, narrow-
ing again until you reach the peninsula, which is most mountain-
ous. In some places, on both the north and south-east coasts, the
mountains rise precipitous from the sea, and end in the east in the
two prongs, between which is Sir John Milne Bay.' 1 It is con-
jectured that there are about 460,000 natives in British New
Guinea. Around the mouth of the Fly River are found large
native houses. In the swamps, streets of houses are built on piles,
and in the Motu district are several villages built in the sea.
Yams, sago, the sugar-cane are grown. The island is fertile,
though unhealthy. There are forty-two mission stations, chiefly
conducted by Polynesian native teachers. There has been great
mortality amongst these teachers no fewer than 103 having died
out of 201 imported since 1871. Comparatively little is known of
the interior of this vast tropical island, although only 90 miles dis-
tant from Australia. It is not fitted to be a home of European
immigrants. From its geographical situation it is more closely
connected with Queensland than any other colony. Murray
Island, which lies midway between Queensland and New Guinea,
has been joined to Queensland. In a certain sense British New
Guinea may be regarded as an annexe of Queensland.


Area. 104,471 square miles. The North Island has a length
of about 515 miles, and a breadth of about 250 miles, with a coast-
line of 2200 miles. The South Island, or, as it is officially called,

1 Paper by Mr. Chalmers, Proceedings of the Royal Colonial Institute,
vol. xviii.

324 British Colonisation

the Middle Island, has a length of about 525 miles, and a breadth
of about 1 80, with a coast-line of 2000 miles. Amongst the islands
of New Zealand are Stewart Island, with an area of 665 square
miles, the Chatham, the Auckland, the Campbell, the Bounty

Divisions. New Zealand is divided into nine provincial dis-
tricts : Auckland, Taranaki, Wellington, Nelson, Canterbury,
Otago, Hawke's Bay, Marlborough, Southland. It is also divided
into sixty-three counties.

Physical Features. The most striking feature of New Zealand
geography is a mountain range running the whole length of the
two islands in the direction of south-west to north-east. Amongst
the highest peaks are Mount Cook, 12,349 feet ; Mount Hoch-
stetter, 11,200 feet; Mount Egmont, 8300 feet; Tongariro, an
active volcano, 6500 feet. In the South Island are the Southern
Alps, stretching along a distance of 200 miles. The Canterbury
Plains, the largest in New Zealand, are also a notable feature.
The two islands are separated from one another by Cook Strait.
By the nearest line, from point to point, New Zealand is 1175
miles from New South Wales.

Population In 1861, 99,021; in 1871, 256,393; in 1881,
489,933 ; in 1891, 626,658. In 1891 there were 41,523 Maoris, and
4292 Chinese.

Chief Towns. Auckland, 51,127; Christchurch, 47,846; Dun-
edin, 45,865 ; Wellington, 33,224 ; Invercargill, 8551 ; Napier,
8341 ; Nelson, 6626 ; Oamaru, 5621 ; Wanganui, 5011. In New
Zealand the population is more evenly distributed than in the other
Australasian colonies.

Government. The Government of New Zealand is of the ' re-
sponsible ' kind (1852), and consists of (i) a Governor appointed by
the Crown ; (2) a Legislative Council of 40 members appointed by
the Crown for life ; (3) a House of Representatives of 74 members,
including 4 Maoris, elected by adult males on the six months
residential qualification. Members of the Council receive 100
for every session, if resident more than three miles from the
Assembly Buildings ; and members of the House of Representa-
tives receive 100 for every session. Triennial Parliaments.

Trade. The value of the imports from countries outside Aus-
tralasia was ,5,172,932 ; exports, 8,177,472 giving a total value of
13,350,404, equivalent to 21, 95. lod. per head. The value of

Appendices 325

total i.e. external and inter-colonial trade was : 1890, imports,
6,260,525; exports, ,9,811,720 giving a trade of ^16,072,245.
In 1891, imports, ,6,503,849 ; exports, 9,06,397-

Products. The wool exported direct, 1890, was worth ,4,139,924,
and that exported by way of other colonies ,9465, representing a
total value of ,4,149,389, i.e. 20.4 per cent, of the whole export of

In 1890 New Zealand had 301,460 acres under wheat, producing
5,723,610 bushels more than enough for home consumption.
The average production of wheat per acre for 1881-90 was 24.5
bushels. The colony exported 4,943,652 bushels in 1890. The
maize crop yielded 238,864 bushels, and the crop of oats was
9,947,036, averaging 31.0 bushels per acre, and representing 62.9
per cent, of the whole Australasian yield. The barley grown was
758,833 bushels, averaging 27.8 bushels per acre, and representing
27.2 per cent, of the whole yield. Of potatoes, the colony produced
178,121 tons, at an average of 5.2 tons per acre, representing 31.6
per cent, of the whole yield, and allowing her to export 28,872
tons. It will therefore be seen that for wheat, oats, barley, and
potatoes the yield per acre is higher than in any other colony.
The area under hay was 44,045 acres, averaging 1.4 tons per acre,
and representing 4.9 of the whole yield. New Zealand is not
returned as a wine- and grape-producing country.

With regard to minerals, New Zealand raised, 1890, 635,481 tons
of coal, valued at .349,936, and representing 19.2 of the whole
Australasian output. The amount of gold raised was 193,193 oz.,
valued at 773,438, representing 12.9 per cent, of the whole Aus-
tralasian yield. Of silver, New Zealand only raised 6162 worth
in 1890, representing 0.2 per cent, of the whole yield. New Zealand
produced mineral wealth, 1890, to the value of ,2, gs. id. per

Revenue. For the year ending December 1890, .4, 193,942.
Expenditure, 4,081,566. With regard to this revenue, .1,535,868
was raised from customs, 1,143,989 from railways, .338,315
from post and telegraphs, 330,956 from public lands. With
regard to expenditure, .725,332 was spent on railways, .257,684
on post and telegraphs, ^397,885 on public instruction, ,1,640,289
on charges on the public debt.

The Public Debt, March 31, 1891, was 38,830,350.

From the above figures some general conclusions may be

326 British Colonisation

gathered especially with regard to the distribution of industries.
It will be noticed that New South Wales figures as the great
wool-producing colony her share of the export being no less
than 44 per cent. She also exports 96 per cent, of the silver
raised in Australasia ; and her coal is also an exceptional source of
wealth, the amount raised, 1890, being more than 70 per cent, of
the whole. She also raises more than 30 per cent, of the tin. As
far as mineral wealth is concerned, New South Wales is amply
endowed. Victoria, however, stands pre-eminent as the great
gold-producing colony (39.2 per cent.), although Queensland (35.6
per cent.), owing to the richness of the Mount Morgan mines, is
running her close. South Australia produces more than 70 per
cent, of the copper. The wealth of New Zealand in coal (19.2
per cent.), in gold (12.9 per cent.), is considerable.

When we come to crops and cereals, the variations of industries
are remarkable. Wheat, oats, barley, potatoes grow best in New
Zealand ; but the importance of Australasia as a producer of wheat
is small when compared with the rest of the world. The greatest
amount of wheat is grown in South Australia, and together with
Victoria and New Zealand it is able to export some of its surplus.
Both Queensland and New South Wales are compelled to import
largely. New Zealand (62.9 per cent.) and Victoria (31.1 per
cent.) are the great oat-growing countries, whilst New South Wales
(64.2 per cent.) and Queensland (26.7 percent.) produce the largest
amount of maize. Victoria (50.4 per cent.) and New Zealand (27.2
per cent.) are the great barley-growing colonies, and produce, also,
36.3 per cent, and 31.6 per cent, of the whole crop of potatoes.
With regard to other industries, New South Wales and Queens-
land are the only sugar-producing colonies, whilst South Australia
and Victoria are most successful with the wine industry. There is
no article, however, so valuable to Australasia as wool.


Area. 7400 square miles. There are about 250 islands, of
which half are inhabited. The largest are Viti Levu, 4200 square
miles, and Vanua Levu, 2400 square miles. Other islands are
Taviuni, 217 square miles; Kandavu, 124 square miles; Ovalu,
where the old capital of Fiji, Levuka, is situated ; and Gau,
Lakeba, Koro, and Mago.

Appendices 327

Divisions. The island is divided into fourteen provinces, each
under the control of a Roko Tui, or chief native officer.

Physical Features. The whole group lies within the tropics,
and in the track of the south-east trades. The islands are all
mountainous, more or less. Some peaks rise to the height of 3000
to 4000 feet. Nearly all the islands are surrounded by coral reefs.
Many of them are of volcanic origin, and hot springs are found
there as in the West Indies. Viti Levu is the only island with
rivers of any importance, viz. the Rewa, Navua, Siga, Tokacond :
these permit of navigation to the unusual extent, for an island, often
or twenty miles. There are many good harbours and anchorages.
At times the rainfall is very heavy, and hurricanes occasionally
occur. These are not so violent as in Mauritius and the West
Indies. 1

Population. 1891, 121,180, of whom 110,871 are native Fijians,
6311 Indian immigrants, 1988 Europeans, with a mixture of
Polynesians, half-castes, and Chinese. Nearly half of the inhabi-
tants live on Viti Levu.

Chief Towns. Suva, the capital, on Viti Levu (700) ; Levuka.

Government. Fiji is a Crown colony, and is administered by
(i) a Governor nominated by the Crown; (2) an Executive
Council ; (3) a Legislative Council of six official and six non-
official nominated members. The natives live under a system of
village councils.

Trade. 1891, imports, ^259,049. Exports, 474*334- Nearly
the whole of Fiji imports and exports is with British colonies.
'Their trade (1872-1886) was chiefly carried on with New South
Wales, Victoria, and New Zealand. The imports and exports from
and to British possessions were respectively 87 per cent, and 79 per
cent. The same from and to the United Kingdom were only 9 per
cent, and 7 per cent.' 2 In 1891, the imports from United Kingdom
were .195.

Products. Sugar is the most important product. Bananas
come next, cocoa-nuts, tea, tobacco, vanilla. Coffee-growing has
been tried, but has failed owing to the attacks of the Acarus coffece.
Indian corn is grown by the natives.

Revenue. 1891, ,71,250. Expenditure, ,67,820.

Public De&t.i&gt, ^246,690.

1 Paper on 'Agriculture in Fiji,' Proceedings of the Royal Colonial Insti-
tute, vol. xxi. 2 Sir Rawson W. Rawson.

328 British Colonisation


The Gilbert Archipelago, over which a British protectorate has
recently been proclaimed, lies across the equator in longitude 170
and 1 80 E., to the north-west of the Fiji group. It consists of 16
atolls, many of them triangulai in shape. It was discovered by
Marshall and Gilbert in 1788. The inhabitants are described as
a mixed Malayo-Polynesian race, and supply the labour market of
Fiji. They are known as Tokalaus in the Pacific. Apimama is
one of the chief islands. The group has been visited by German
traders from Apia, who import Hamburg gin in large quantities.

Cocoa-nuts and copra are the chief products.

Since 1877 these islands, together with the southern Solomon
Islands, the New Hebrides, the Tongan or Friendly Islands,
the Samoan or Navigators' Islands, and other small islands in
Melanesia, have fallen under the High Commissioner of the West
Pacific. The object of this Commission has been to carry out the
Pacific Islanders Protection Acts, 1872 and 1875, anc ^ to provide
a civil court for settlement of disputes between British subjects.
It covered, indeed, all islands not included in Fiji, Queensland,
or New South Wales, or claimed by any foreign Power.

The following are some general statistics, 1891, of the seven
' responsible ' colonies of Australasia :

Religious Denominations. Number.

Church of England, . . . .1,516,190

Roman Catholic, .... 829,180

Presbyterian, ..... 495,830

Wesleyans and Primitive Methodists, . . 440,680

Congregational,. . . . . 78,120

Baptist, . ... . . . 84,340

Lutheran, ..... 75.240

Salvation Army, .... 42,820

Unitarian, ..... 4> 2 3

Other Protestants, . . 49>77o

Hebrews, ..... 14,820

Pagans, . . . 49,5^0

Unclassed, . 129,280


Appendices 329

State-aided Immigrants to 1890.

Prior to 1890. 1881-90. Total.

New South Wales, . 114,253 34,79 148,332

Victoria,. . . 140,102 140,102

Queensland, . . 52,399 103,140 155,539

South Australia, . 88,050 7,298 95,348

West Australia, . . 889 4,552 5,441

Tasmania, . 18,965 2,734 21,699

New Zealand, . . 100,920 14,614

515,578 166,417 681,995

Of late years State-aided immigration to the Australasian colonies
has practically ceased.

Distribution of Trade in Australasia.

The greater portion of the trade of Australasia viz. about three-
quarters is with the United Kingdom ; the remainder is carried
on with the United States, France, Germany, and Belgium.
This foreign trade, especially with Belgium, is growing. The
steamers of the Messageries Maritimes (1883), of the Nord
Deutscher Lloyd Company of Bremen (1887), testify to its im-
portance. The following is a statistical account of the external
trade of Australasia in 1881 and 1890-91 :

1881. 1890-91

With the United Kingdom (exports

and imports), . . . ^50,004,607 56,363,91 1

British possessions (exports and

imports), . . 7,336,156 5,476,404

Foreign countries .... 7,213,915 13,383,412

^64,554,678 ^75,2.23,727

In 1 88 1 the trade with the United Kingdom constituted 77.4
per cent. ; in 1890 this was reduced to 74.9 per cent. That with
British possessions had also decreased from 11.4 to 7.3, whilst that
with foreign countries had increased from 11.2 to 17.8 per cent. 1

The best prospects of expansion for Australasian trade lie in the
East, especially with India, China, Japan, and the East Indian
Archipelago. A large business, especially in tea, is done with the
1 The Seven Colonies of Australasia, by T. A. Coghlan, p. 32.


British Colonisation

island of Ceylon. The bulk of the South Pacific trade is with
Fiji and New Caledonia. A glance at the conditions and prospects
of Australasian trade proves at once the paramount importance to
the colonists of naval defence and a system of naval co-operation
with the Mother-country. A safe passage to Antwerp and Ham-
burg is becoming more and more essential to Australasian pro-

Australasian Railways.

New South Wales,
Queensland, .

South Australia, .

Western Australia,
New Zealand,

Miles of Line.


Ft. In.


4 8J


5 3


3 6

1,829 |

5 3l
3 6f


3 6


3 6


3 6


Total Cost.

Cost per mile.










The average interest on all Australasian loans is 4.02 per cent.,
and the returns yielded by the railways is 3.01 per cent, showing
a loss in working of i.oi per cent., equivalent to ;i, 149,150.*

Defence Forces of Australasia, 1890.

New South Wales,
South Australia, .
Western Australia,
Tasmania, .
New Zealand,

Total Forces. Paid. Partially Paid. Unpaid.



























33,848 1,380 13,844 18,624

In addition to these forces, all the colonies, with the exception
of Western Australia, have small corps of volunteer artillery, or a

1 See Coghlan's Seven Colonies of Australasia, p. 174.

Appendices 331

partially paid force of a similar character. The marine forces are

as follows :

New South Wales, .... 633

Victoria, . . . . . . 615

Queensland, 428

South Australia, 170

Tasmania, 68

New Zealand, 1,192

The combined forces of all the Australasian colonies is there-
fore 36,954.

Males of Military Age, 20 to 40 years, 1891.*
New South Wales, 209,237 representing 30.26 per cent.
Victoria, . . 207,033 29.93

Queensland,. . 86,593 12.52

South Australia, . 53,964 7.80

Western Australia, 12,018 1.74

Tasmania, . . 24,858 3.60

New Zealand . 97,864 14.15


Naval Defence.

The boundaries of the Australian naval station are from 95 E.
longitude, by the parallel of 10 S. latitude, to 139 E. longitude ;
thence north to 12 N. latitude, and along this parallel to 160 W.
longitude ; and on the south by the Antarctic Circle, including the
numerous groups of islands within those limits. The defence of
the Australasian coast is in the hands of the British ships of the
Australian station and of the Australasian Auxiliary Squadron.
Sydney is the headquarters of the fleet. In 1891 there were nine
Imperial vessels Orlando, Curaqoa, Cordelia, Rapid, Royalist,
Lizard, Goldfinch, Ringdove, Dart.

Australian Auxiliary Squadron.

This arrived in Port Jackson, September 5, 1891, and consisted of
five fast cruisers, the Katoomba, Ringarooma, Mildura, Wallaroo,
Tauranga, and two torpedo-boats, the Boomerang and Karakatea.
i The Seven Colonies of Australasia, by T. A. Coghlan, p. 342.

332 British Colonisation

The contribution of each colony for the maintenance of this
auxiliary fleet, on the basis of population, for the year 1891, was:
New South Wale?, . . .27,430
Victoria, . . . * . . 27,280
Queensland, . . . 9)38o

South Australia, . . ' 7,47
Western Australia, . . % 1,210
Tasmania, . . . 3,47o

New Zealand, . . . 14,760


Victoria has a navy of its own for harbour defence, Queensland
has two gunboats, South Australia maintains one twin-screw steel
cruiser, Tasmania has one torpedo-boat, and Western Australia
owns one schooner. The total expenditure for defence and forti-
fications, 1890-91, was as follows :

New South Wales, ,280,780 representing 45. lid. per head
Victoria, . . 149,381 2s. 8d.

Queensland, . . 66,013 35. sd.

South Australia, . 47,797 35. od.

Western Australia, 4,013 is. gd.

Tasmania, . . 16,836 2s. 4d.

New Zealand, 75> 8 5 2 2s. sd.

Chief Dates.

1606. Voyages of the Spaniards, de Quiros and Torres, in the

The Dutch Explorers.
1606. The Dutch landed from the Duyfhen on the shores of the

Gulf of Carpentaria.
1616. Dirk Hartog landed at an island in Shark's Bay.

1618. Zaachen sailed along the north coast.

1619. Edel surveyed the west coast.

1622. Cruise of the Dutch ship, the Leeuwin or Lioness, along the
south coast.

1627. Peter Nuyts entered the Australian Bight.

1628. General Carpenter sailed round the Gulf of Carpentaria.
Captain Pelsart wrecked on Houtman's Abrolhos.

1642. Abel Jansen Tasman discovered Tasmania and New

1695. William Vlaming explored the Swan River.

Appendices 333

The English Explorers.

1699. Dampier explored the west coast in the Roebuck from Shark's
Bay to Dampier's Archipelago.

1768. Captain Cook left England in the Endeavour with the

object of observing the transit of Venus.

1769. In September, Cook sighted New Zealand.

1770. New South Wales named and occupied by Cook.

1772. Voyage of Marion and Crozet to Van Diemen's Land.

1773. Voyage of Furneaux.

The British Occupation.

1788. Landing of the first convicts, January 26, at Port Jackson

under Governor Phillip.
Arrival of the French ships Astrolabe and Boussole under

la Perouse and 1' Angle.
Norfolk Island established as a dependency on February

1795. First voyage of George Bass and Matthew Flinders.

1797. Sheep imported from the Cape by Macarthur.

1798. Circumnavigation of Van Diemen's Land by Bass and


1803. Lieutenant Bowen in the Lady Nelson occupied Tasmania.
First Australian newspaper, the Sydney Gazette and New

South Wales Advertiser.
Macarthur brought to England the first sample of wool.

1806. Famine at New South Wales.
Governorship of Captain W. Bligh.

1807. Norfolk Island settlers brought to Tasmania.

1813. Blaxland, Went worth, and Lawson crossed the Blue

Mountains in New South Wales.
1817. Bank of New South Wales established.
1824. Journey of Hume and Hovell to Port Phillip.

1828. Hume and Sturt explore the Darling River.

The vine first planted on the Hunter River, New South

1829. Sturt and M'Cleay explore the Murray River.

Captain Fremantle hoisted the British flag at the Swan
River, Western Australia.

334 British Colonisation

1831. Sir Thomas Mitchell explored the northern parts of New

South Wales.

The South Australian Association and Gibbon Wakefield's

1835. Batman landed at Geelong.

1836. Governor Hindmarsh proclaimed British authority at


1837. Governor Bourke planned the town of Melbourne.

1839. Captain Wakefield hoisted the British flag in New Zealand.

1840. Strzelecki, a Pole, discovered gold near Mount Kosciusko.
Wellington, New Zealand, founded by the New Zealand

Journey of Eyre.

1842. Discovery of Kapunda copper-mines, South Australia.
1845-8. First Maori War.

1850. First sod turned of first railway.

1851. Port Phillip (Victoria) separated from New South Wales.
Gold discovered by Hargraves.

Extension of representative government to the colonies.
First telegraph messages sent in New South Wales.
Anti-Transportation League.

1858. TheTorrens Act.

1859. Queensland separated from New South Wales.
1860-70. The Second Maori War.

1864. Sugar grown in New South Wales and Queensland.

1868. Polynesian Labourers' Act, Queensland.

1869. Submarine cable between Tasmania and Australia.

1872. Australia first connected' with the outside world by telegraph

in July.
Completion of overland cable across South Australia in


Discovery of tin mines at Mount Bischoff, Tasmania.
1884. Formation of the Imperial Federation League.
British protectorate proclaimed over New Guinea.

1886. Inauguration of foreign parcels post,
Colonial and Indian Exhibition.

1887. The Colonial Conference.

Appendices 335


Area. 24,702 square miles, in shape resembling a pear, with
an extreme length of 266 miles, and breadth of 140 miles. The
Maldives, of which Mali is the largest island, 7 miles in circum-

Online LibraryWilliam Henry Parr GreswellOutlines of British colonisation → online text (page 28 of 31)