Murder of Mary Manning

ON THIS DAY – February 18, 1908


John Charles Manning and his wife, Mary Ada Manning, the victim of the tragic murder on this day in 1908, had signed a deed of separation. The document read: “This indenture was made on the 20th day of May, 1907, between John Charles Manning, of 195 King-street, canvasser, husband of the first part, and Mary Ada Manning, of the same place, married woman, wife of the said John Charles Manning, of the second part. Whereas unhappy differences have arisen between the said John Charles Manning and the said Mary Ada Manning, they have agreed to live separate from each other for the future, and to enter into such mutual arrangement as hereinafter expressed. This indenture witnesses, in pursuance of the said agreement and in consideration of the premises, and the mutual covenants, hereinafter contained, that each shall live separate and apart, and reside in such place or places and in each manner as he or she shall think fit, and will in no wise molest, harass, or interfere one with the other, and the said Mary Ada Manning also covenants with the said John Charles Manning that she will not hereafter require, or by any means whatsoever compel, him to live with her, or institute any legal proceedings, or take any other steps whatsoever for that purpose; and further, she shall not, nor will, at any time hereafter, commence or prosecute any suit or other proceedings for compelling him to allow her any support, maintenance, or alimony, and hereby absolutely waives all her rights to any such respectively.” Manning continues to make good progress at the Bendigo Hospital. Manning was sentenced to death.