Great Doings at Mintaro

At 3 o’clock on Thursday afternoon, the 9th September, a number of gentlemen farmers and others, to the number of about 30 including several ladies, interested in the Mintaro district, assembled at the Mintaro Hotel, on the occasion of laying the foundation stone of a steam flour mill, to be erected by Mr. John Smith (late of the Burra at the back of the hotel, of which also that gentleman is the proprietor. E. B. Gleeson, Esq., J.P., of Clare, who consented to lay the stone, accompanied by Messrs. Jonathan Filgate, W. Lennon, Melville, Priest, Brewer, Chapman (of the Burra), Torr, Jessup, Brady, Faulkner, Cox, Gibson, and several others whose names we have not been able to obtain, having arrived at the site of the proposed new mill, proceeded at once to business. The trowel having been handed to Mr. Gleeson, that gentleman said he was very happy at being present on that very interesting occasion, to assist in laying the foundation stone of the Mintaro Mill. It was one of those gratifying events which exemplified in a forcible manner the rising importance of the township of Mintaro, as the centre of a great agricultural district; it exhibited also the fact that the farmers of Mintaro were determined to go ahead, to grow their own coin, and to grind it themselves. (Cheers.) The undertaking about to be commenced would prove of the greatest benefit to the surrounding neighborhood, and the great importance of the event was also proved by the presence of those numerous and successful agriculturists by whom he was happy to see himself surrounded. They would soon have a mill of their own to grind their produce and fit it for market, and it was hoped that they would also have a railway running past their doors, by the Valley of the Gilbert—(cheers)—to convey that produce to market, as they all knew the Valley of the Gilbert was the natural country through which a main trunk line of railway should run, as it cut through the centre of a great extent of valuable agricultural land, well settled, and highly promising. Yes, it cut through the centre of the great northern agricultural country, and so, in connection with agriculture crops, mills, and so forth, the easy transmission to market became a question of great importance to the farmer. It was very pleasing to look back upon the history of that part of the North so well settled, so promising as to results with their homesteads, and waving fields of corn, luxuriant crops and happy homes. (Loud cheers.) Let them trace the progress of improvement and progression in their own immediate locality, and let them acknowledge also that among the many proofs of advancement in the district generally, the establishment of mills was one probably of the most striking importance, as indicative of the steady and permanent progress of the community, in all the developments of social relationship. (Cheers.) Agriculture and commerce were gone hand in hand, steadily but onward, notwithstanding the present temporary commercial depression. He looked upon that depression as one of those temporary incidents, appertaining at all times, and in all countries to trade; it was no proof whatever of any unsoundness in their commercial system, and time and patience would soon see all right again. (Cheers.) He might safely assert, that their agricultural resources and prospects were very good indeed. Having passed a warm enlogium (sic) upon Mr. Smith, for his enterprise in building this mill, Mr. Gleeson concluded by hoping, that the machinery of the building, which had been set in motion that day, would progress rapidly to completion, and that by next harvest, the doors of the Mintaro mill would be thrown open for the reception of their grain. (Loud cheers, and three times three.
Mr. GLEESON having placed the stone, and announced the fact, a young lady present was requested to advance, and being handed a bottle of champagne, she broke it on the stone amid loud cheers, and so baptised “the Mintaro Mill.” Cheers were then called, and warmly accorded to Mr. Gleeson, to Mr. Smith, to the young lady, and to the Mintaro Mill, and so ended the proceedings.