For years there seems to have been a sort of stereotyped economy shown in the management of sailing vessels, the present arrangements being generally carried cut by those now employed in this service on the same principles as those adopted by their fathers and their grandfathers before them ; and it is quite refreshing at last to have to chronicle an invention of vast importance which has at length found its way to Geelong. The Alice Maud is the first vessel that has entered this port in which the top-sails are reefed by patent machinery, which renders it unnecessary for the seamen to be sent aloft, and merely require that the halyards be let go, when of themselves they instantly wind up like a blind. In order that we may not be charged with raising a curiosity without affording the means of gratifying it, we beg to state for the information of those who are interested in nautical matters that an opportunity will this morning, at eleven o'clock, be afforded on board for the inspection of this most ingenious contrivance.
But our report does not end here. There has been such a praiseworthy earnestness in the attempt to forward the interests of the owners of goods shipped on board this vessel, which only came up to the wharf on Thursday last, the 19th instant, and commenced discharging on Friday morning, that about five hundred tons of cargo have been landed in five working days ; and this morning fifty tons of ballast having been taken on board, she is now nearly ready for sea again ! This vessel was to have discharged her cargo at Point Henry, and by coming up to the Moorabool Wharf a saving of six to eight shillings per ton has been saved to the consignees, and their goods are delivered also in a better condition than they could otherwise have been. Let the slow coaches think of this, who have taken almost as many weeks to perform the amount of duty here involved, as Captain Winn has succeded in accomplishing in six days ; and when they have thoroughly weighed the matter, and seen what can now be done at this port, let them go and strive to do likewise ! - Geelong Advertiser, 27th April, .
SG & SGTL Vol 12 ; Page 88 ; 7 May 1855
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