Empire Friday 1 December 1865
The following interesting extracts from a
private letter from Brisbane, under date 8th
November, have been handed to us for publication :—
In politics we have a lull at present. The Governor
has been steering down to the north, and getting
spades and barrows for cutting first sods of railways,
and a great number of addresses, hardly worth the time
it took to write them.
It is time this fulsome, social,
and political hypocrisy was abandoned, and respect and
civility manifested, aye even loyalty, some other way.
We have had, a number of strikes in Queensland.
First, my baker, struck bread up a penny ; take it or
leave it, that's the price. Next, the butchers strike
beef and mutton up three halfpennies per pound.
Well, next, the navvies strike for more wages and
so on ! but I hear their demands were mostly
reasonable ; and this I know, that some of the
masters in Queensland are more unprincipled scoundrels
than any navvies that ever were imported.
also some who are hucksters as well as contractors,
and put bullies over the men to get as much work out
of them as possible, and then, like leaches, suck the
remaining blood out of them by ruinous prices at their
stores; and men who would not deal at the stores to
near the extent of their wages were dispensed with at
some public works in Queensland not long ago.