Page:The Irish in Australia.djvu/102

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CHAPTER V.


A GOLDEN CITY.


SANDHURST, THE GREAT CENTRE OF QUARTZ MINING—AN INVADING HOST OF DIGGERS—INDIGNANT REMONSTRANCES AGAINST OFFICIAL TYRANNY— THE BANNER OF THE IRISH DIGGERS—"BENDIGO MAC"—HOW HE AVERTED A REBELLION—AN IRISHMAN WHO LITERALLY ROLLED IN WEALTH—AN IRISH DIGGER'S TENT—HIBERNIAN PERSEVERANCE REWARDED—TIPPERARY GULLY—THE "SHAMROCK"—AN ENTERPRISING IRISHMAN— SOME PROMINENT SANDHURST IRISHMEN, AND WHAT THEY HAVE ACHIEVED.


Much that has been said about Ballarat is equally true of the city of Sandhurst, the second great gold-fields centre of Victoria. Distant 100 miles from the metropolis, in a north-westerly direction, it is surrounded on all sides by an abundance of mining wealth that will ensure the prosperity of the place for many a year to come. Indeed, some scientific experts have given it as their opinion that the quartz reefs of Sandhurst are practically inexhaustible. Without acquiescing in that professional prediction, there is no denying the fact that the production of gold from the Sandhurst mines during the past thirty-five years has been something marvellous, and the immense depths at which the golden stone continues to be procured at this day strengthen the belief that it will take at least half a century to extract all the gold from the available quartz. The first great "rush" to Sandhurst or Bendigo, the name by which it was known for many years, happened soon after the discovery of Ballarat, and in a few weeks' time the gold-seekers were tramping from Melbourne in their thousands. They occupied the