Page:Early struggles of the Australian press.djvu/28

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The order of 1834 is carried on in 1836, four pages upon Monday and Thursday.

In the last number for' 1835 is advertised the Australian Magazine, whicli was to appear in January, 1836, as a monthly, under the editorship of Mr. F. Stephen, price half-a-crown. It is added :

  • ' The proprietors do not deem it necessary, in advertising their intention, to detail at len^h the plan

which it IS i)roposed to pursue, still less to make any pledge as to the opinions on political or other subjects which they may hereafter adopt."

The enlargement of the Monitor was then advertised by Mr. Hall, who returns his thanks for ten years' support. "Mr. Hall's princijples," he states, "with respect to advocating the rights of tlie Emancipists, and the few rights which the law leaves to the prisoner, remain unaltered." Yet he writes : " The undersigned will never consent to draw a line between the emigrants and freed prisoners^ merely as such. He considers the free and freed as one class, possessing equal rights."

Though it is unnecessary in this limited space to go beyond the few early years of the HeralcVs career, some notices of this paper may be cited. As an adjunct to the Hercua, a weekly Trade List and Shipping Gazette was started in 1843, though ultimately merging into the Sydney Mail, in 1860, AS the Weekly HeraZd,'*

Gordon and Gotch's Hatidbook kindly says : " The paper has never been in the habit of identifying itself with any particular party that may be m power, but has always held itself free to criticise and condemn, or to support, as it has thought necessary, in the public interest." It had the valued aid Of Mr. G. O'Shaughnessy, of the Rev. Ralph Mansfield, and of the able Rev. John West in its earlier years. •

The Rev. Dr. Lang, a very Bedouin of the political press, had no kind opinion of the Herald, when he could write : " The present proprietors of this paper are Messr i. Kemp and Fairfax, the former a High Church Puseyite, the latter a deacon among the Independents, but both uneducated and mercenary men, who have no idea beyond that of gain, and who have uniformly been opposed to everything like popular freedom and the rights of men. Their principal writer for many years past has been the Rev. Ralph Mansfield, a Wesleyan preacher." He then gives some doggerel, reflecting, in coarse language, upon the last-named Editor ; the first Terse being—

" Ye freemen and bondmen and ticket-of -lea vers,
Ye Sydney insolvents and Sydney receivers.
Ye men that can do the boys, list to my story,
Of a Methodist preacher all in his glory."

Mr. Barton has a capital notice of the Herald in his " Literature of New South Wales." But it was to the tact, energy, and business capacities of Mr. Fairfax that the paper was mainly indebted for its safe passage through tempestuous weather, its prosperous way with more propitious gales.

Born in WarwicK, 1804, suffering in trade for liberal opinions in Leamington, he went with/his faniHy to %dney in 1888. Awhile engaged at the public library, he spent off-hours in the Herald printing office. No less prudent than skilful, he was eventually able, by union with the reporter, Mr. Kemp, to secure the paper. Here his untiring energies and commercial ability had full play, and received abundant reward. A visit to England in 1851 was the occasion for a full payment of old obligations, and the procuring of better press materials. The gold fields placed the Herald on an eminence as safe as it was honourable. Mr. Fairfax was essentially a worker for the public good. He laboured to establish the Mutual Provident Institution, to liberalize the State school system, to extend freedom without revolution, and to favour all religious movements that raised humanity. He died in June, 1877, in the esteem of fellow-colonists, having successfully outlived all " Early Struggles •of the Australian Press."

The New South Wales Magazine had its birth August 1st, 1833. It was of small cctavo size, 'Containing sixty-four pages, printed by Ann Howe for the sole proprietor, Ralph Mansfield.

The " Avant Coureur," as the introduction was styled, hswi these remarks : " Our first number is now before the Public, and as specimens are better than professions, we might leave our readers to judge for themselves as to the future character of the New South Wales Magazine. But the value •of a house cannot be estimated by a brick taken from its waUs ; and, although our present publication is one for which we have no cause to blush, we would beg our patrons to regard it as merely the first stone of a superstructure on which we trust. Such of our contributors as nave had time to prepare their lucubrations, have laboured comparatively in the dark, and with materials procured entirely by themselves. The work for which they were providing was not before them — it was only in posse — its shape, its spirit, its cast of thought was not there to stimulate and to guide. The New South Wales Magazine will not be wedded to any party, but will endeavour to maintain the position of an impartial umpire. The Magazine will thus form, not a nucleus of homogeneous principles or preju- dices, worked up or softened down to a standard previously fixed by the Editor, but, on the contrary, an arena accessiole to all seekers after truth, where they may challenge and obtain * a fair field and no favour.' "

The frontispiece is a particularly well-executed engraving of the courses of the Rivers Hawkes- bury, Warragamba, &c., to illustrate the account of that region. There is a story of the Aborigines, a notice of Australian Literature, articles on the Transportation System, Natural History, and the Trigonometrical Survey of the Colony, a poem on Australia, "A Day with Sir Walter Scott," and the Historical Register of the Colony's Government. The eighth number came out in February, 1834.

In the Preface to Volume I. we read : " This publication was undertaken as an experiment, and as an experiment from which many would have been deterred by the fate of previous trials. Several works of a similar character were started at different times some years ago ; but it was found that the reading public was then too scanty to afford them adequate sup^rt, and their proprietors having sustained no small pecuniary loss, they were discontinued. But this attempt, like the others, proved unfortunate.

In May, 1821, was the Australian Magazine, a Compendiutn of Beligious, Literary, and Mis- ^neou^ IntelHgeTice, printed by George Howe. It had thirty-two pages, costing fifteen pence the •copjv^lt was little worth, and soon expired. There was a good Aiistraiian Magazine in 1888.

"THE SURVEYOR-aENEBAL."

It was in May, 1833, that Mr. N. L. Kentish, a Government Surveyor, advertised in the Sydney Herald the long prospectus of his Sunday Newspaper and Magazine, including a History of Australia, and a poem. Some extracts therefrom will have an interest now : —