8 months ago

Fitzgerald's Town

secretary was to receive

secretary was to receive the names and the subscriptions of joining members. Other officers elected were D.W. Bartram, president; Mr. Banks, vice-president; committee members were J. Taylor; D. Broome and H. White. Club nights were Tuesdays and Wednesdays. 17 Despite the apparent enthusiasm, judged by the numbers present, there is no further record of the club in the principal newspapers, although this does not imply that it failed to prosper. It would be good to have further information on the fate of this club. The Improvement Society At about the same time there was an active Lincoln Young Men’s Society and there is a report of a Society meeting on the evening of 10 August 1885 at which members debated the proposition “Should the colonisation of Chinamen be encouraged?” J. Taylor opened in the affirmative, Mr Restall in the negative, and after other speakers advanced their points of view, a show of hands supported those who argued for the affirmative. 18 The meeting was well attended, and the report implied that the club was thriving and had been in existence for some time. The next known account is five years later when the society held its Annual General Meeting in the Lincoln library. The Rev H. Adamson was re-elected president, the vice-presidents were Rev J.F. Teakle and Dr F.G. Westenra, the treasurer was D. Dunn, the secretary, W. Bartram and the committee Messrs D. Dunn, A. Geddes, W. Kennedy, A. McNae, J. Sinclair and W. Van Asch. On this occasion the meeting resolved to change the name to The Lincoln Mutual Improvement Society, and the subscription was reduced from two shillings and six pence to one shilling. 19 54. Report of the Draughts Club. Lyttelton Times. 17 October 1889. Courtesy of Papers Past. Subjects discussed were often very topical and included the possible abolition of capital punishment, whether the government was right in acquiring the Cheviot estate, and in 1892 six members visited the Prebbleton society to debate the contentious issue of women’s franchise. It was a long night, for the matter was debated for more than two hours. The Prebbleton team supported the right of women to have the vote and Lincoln put forward the opposite view. When debate ended the jury took some time to reach a decision in favour of Lincoln. 20 152

The society was still in existence in 1897 when a report of the annual general meeting appeared in The Press of 15 April, but for how long it continued after that date is not known. Other societies Other societies were formed during the 19 th century but apparently either did not last long or were not much reported. Of these we should note the Lincoln Temperance Society, one of many in the region, which was certainly in existence during the 1890’s. Delegates from the Lincoln and neighbouring societies met in Lincoln in 1891 to form the Southern Cross Prohibition League and appear to have been politically motivated. There is a report of a pigeon shoot on Mr. Tod’s paddock in August 1885. There was good turnout for the shoot which was helped by good weather. There is a gun club in existence today, and in recent years local shooters have been outstanding at the international level, especially at the Commonwealth Games. Sources and notes 1. Adams, T.W. 1918. Early Lincoln. The Chronicles of a Pioneer. Canterbury Agricultural College Magazine, pp524-529. 2. The Press 1 October 1877. See Papers Past. 3. Supplement to the Lyttelton Times. 10 May 1869. See Papers Past. 4. Weekly Press 21 January 1871. 5. Ibid 2 December 1876. 6. Ibid 8 July 1871 7. Ibid 15 January 1870, and The Press 29 December 1873. See Papers Past. 8. Lyttelton Times. 30 December 1871. See Papers Past. Six carriages were used for the special train. 9. Weekly Press 26 March 1870. 10. The Press 2 August 1869. See Papers Past. 11. Lyttelton Times. 28 August 1869. See Papers Past. 12. The Press 2 August 1869. See Papers Past. 153

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