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L Holywell Special Sessions.I





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THE PAST YEAR. As we write the year of 1863 is fast ebbing away, and will, ere many hours, be chronicled with events that have passed. Taking a retrospect of the past twelve months, its history, it will be found, has not been particularly remarkable so far as England is concerned, save that the year has been one which has continued to our happy isle unbroken peace, and undiminished prosperity; and while we have thus reason to rejoice, there is scarcely another country besides our own that has not been visited for many years past with civil wars and discord. And as each succeeding year rolls on, England's greatness and England's glory increases, while the horizon of other countries becomes more heavily overcast. The principal event of the year in our domestic annals is that of the marriage of our Prince, and the universal jejoicings that i took place on that auspicious occasion unmistakeably proved that the nation looked upon it, as an event of the greatest national importance. The relation of political parties has re- mained unchanged, and Respire We dirrerences in opinion of Hon. Members of St. Stephen, our Prime Minister is the most popular I PremieL. that has ruled over any Cabinet, Whig or Tory, for many years. The economical and financial history of the country during the last twelve months does not afford many points of interest. The com- parative ease with which we still support the strain of the cotton famine continues to surprise- the most sanguine, though the crisis is far from its termination. < he money sub- scribed last year is rapidly being spent, and we fear that a second effort is not likely to take place on so large a scale. The supplies of Cotton from other places than America, are still lamentably short, and though a con- tinuance of the present high prices may secure a supply, it is greatly doubted, by competent judges, whether the demand will continue for cotton goods on these terms. Parliamentary speakers, both inside and outside the house, have been unusually quiet, and, save the Rochdale speeches recently delivered, our M.P.'s have not given us much to talk about. Perhaps it would have been well had there been no exceptions, and a universal quiet had taken place, for the Rochdale speeches were not calculated to increase the nation's happiness or the nation's welfare,—Extremes in Politics, as in every- thing else, are dangerous. Alas! for the once flglorious republic of America." The desolating struggle there waging is no nearer its termination than it was this time twelve months, and it is fearful to contemplate what further bloody conflicts will take place in the year 1864. Death during the past year has removed from amongst us men of rank and fame. of whom we may name-Lord Lansdown, Lord Lynd- hurst, Lord Clyde, Archbishop Whately, Sir George Cornwall Lewis, Lord Elgin, and last of all, the novelist Mr. Thackeray. Denmark lost its King; and we may add that no country or army ever deplored the death of a patriot and a general, more than the Confederate States, when Stonewall Jackson departed this life. WE have above briefly commented upon the events in general of the last year, we would now proceed to dwell for a few moments on home transactions, for great indeed would be our shortcomings did we not jot down a few observations upon men and things in our own immediate neighbour- hood. In the first place we may safely say that Holywell, during the past year has faithfully maintained its orig- inal character so far as Town Improvements are concerned; notwithstanding the continued advocacy of improvements for many years past, still we are'in the same position, although we have now what we formerly had not,—a Legislative Assembly! It can- not be said of the hon. Members who compose our Local Government, as of other Hon. M.P's. that they have been quiet.—No: speeches loud and long have been made in our senate house, which by the bye has lately undergone a process of ventilation, and thereby, probably, the flowery harangues and harmo- nious (?) discourses have re-echoed and reverberated again and again, through valley and glen, that the sayings and doings of our Town Commissioners have become familiar to all. But after all we are no better off, and all that we can saj of our Board of Commis- sioners is that they have talked a great deal but have worked very little! We do hope they will reverse the order of things in the coming year, and that instead of speech-making we may be gratified with something more profitable. At present we regret that circumstances do not look very promising, but still we will hope, and that too, for the best. In now entering on the tenth year of our pub- lication we beg to tender our grateful thanks for the encouragement we have received, and we most cordially wish to our readers, friends and all, a happy and pros- perous New Year.


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