The wide end of the Murray: splendid possibilities!

continued from The Register 30 May 1916

State Library of SA image left Gov General Ronald Munro Ferguson and Governor Galway, grounds of Govt House Adelaide c 1915

State Library of SA image left Gov General Ronald Munro Ferguson and Governor Galway, grounds of Govt House Adelaide c 1915

—Chat with Governor-General— Sir Ronald Munro Ferguson

The party lost its viceregal prestige at Blanchetown. The Governor-General and Governor left here for Adelaide by motor. Just before Sir Ronald (Munro-Ferguson) when I asked him for a few words of his impressions. Practical, as he always is, His Excellency forgot all about the scenery and went straight into the question of irrigation development. ‘The great advantage of this sort of settlement,’ he said, ‘is that there is no gamble in it. Directly you apply water to the land the gambling element is gone. There is no risk, but security and stability. Australia is always gambling with the rain. Your State is exceedingly fortunate in having the banks at the broad end of the Murray, which hitherto—- ‘

His Excellency broke off the conversation. He was smiling, and hesitating! ‘I don’t know whether I ought to say it,’ he said. ‘Tell me what it is, and I’ll tell you,’ I suggested subtly.

‘Well, it’s this,’ replied Sir Ronald. ‘You’ve got the broad end of the stream, and up to the present you have not utilized it. Never mind! Now you are, with, great rapidity, and we need not be critical, need we? There are splendid possibilities ahead, and the value of this agricultural system is that the men have their wives with them. That encourages thrift, and gives a settler the proper sense of responsibility. And now good-bye, and good luck to the Murray’