ON THIS DAY – October 28, 1917


At the Rutherglen Coroner’s Court to day Joseph Butler was committed for trial on a change of having murdered Samuel Costin, his step-father, at Gooramadda on October 28. Edward Butler, the accused’s brother, said that on the day of Costin’s death he heard a shot, and thought he heard the old man call out, “You have shot me” In the kitchen afterwards his brother Joe handed witness 8/ in silver. Joe said, “The old chap is lying out there and it is out of his pocket, and this is half of what I got” His brother said he had only given the old man a fright, and that he was always growling at him. Another witness stated that accused had come to pay the balance for the purchase of a mare with bank notes which were perforated with holes.



ON THIS DAY – October 28, 1933


Albert Lewis (59), labourer, of Peel street, North Melbourne, was charged in the City Court to-day with having, on October 28, murdered Maurice Langley (75), pawnbroker, of Elizabeth-street. Lewis had been detained on a vagrancy charge, as he was suspected of having been one of two men alleged to have been in the pawnshop when the pawnbroker was shot Detective J. E. M’Keogh said that at 1.35 pm. on October 28, Langley was shot in his shop in Elizabeth street. Two men were seen in the shop at the time, and after a struggle a brother of the dead man captured a man named von Geyer, who was charged with murder. The second man escaped. Late that night, Lewis was arrested at West Melbourne and charged with vagrancy. He since had been identified as one of the men who were in the shop, and later was charged with murder. Lewis was remanded to appear at the City Court on November 5.



ON THIS DAY – October 28, 1933


Ellen Maud Holmes married, Grey street South Yarra was charged at the Prahran Court on Friday, with having on October 28 wounded Christopher Green with intent to commit murder. Christopher Green, painter, Simmonds street, South Yarra, said that about 9 p m on October 28, he was about to enter a house in Williams road, Toorak, when he heard a shot and a bullet entered his left arm. He ran into Woodside crescent and saw Mrs.Holmes following him, carrying a rifle. He grappled with her and she struck him on the forehead with the stock of the gun, but eventually he wrested it from her. He was admitted to the Alfred Hospital. Mrs. Holmes had been a tenant for 13 years in a house which he owned in Grey street. Detective B. H. Cavanagh of the police wireless patrol, said that with other police he interviewed Mrs. Holmes at her residence at 2 a.m on October 28. In a written statement which she signed, she said that although she had paid her rent regularly during the 13 years in which she had been a tenant of Green’s house she had fallen in arrears for one week owing to the illness of her daughter. As Green owed her a small amount, she refused to pay the week’s rent until he deducted this amount. He sent her a notice to quit, however, and she became desperate.  Mrs. Holmes who pleaded not guilty, was committed for trial at the sittings of the Supreme Court, to begin on December 4. Bail was allowed in a surety of £300 and a personal bond of £300.

ON THIS DAY – October 27, 1856

At around 4am on the morning of October 27th, 1856, Sergeant-Major Cahir discovered a woman coming along Bellarine Street from the direction of the Barwon River. He recognised her as Catherine Finnegan, the wife of Sergeant Owen Finnegan. Cahir asked her why she was out so early and she admitted to murdering her two youngest children, 3 week old twins John and Judith. Mrs Finnegan was known for her eccentric behaviour, and so Cahir escorted her back to her Bourke Crescent home, where he found Sergeant Owen Finnegan in distress. Finnegan asked his wife what she had done with the children, which she wouldn’t answer. Cahir and the Finnegan entered the property and soon discovered a bloody razor on the foot of the little bed where the children had lain. Mrs Finnegan was conveyed to the watch house and a more thorough search was made for the children. The foot of Mrs Finnegan’s bed was found to be saturated with blood although the covers had been drawn over the mess. The bodies of the children were found at the bottom of the water closet, when blood stains were discovered at the top. Around 6am Constable Grant went down and retrieved the children’s bodies. Both infants had their throats cut, from their ears to the centre of the throat and John also had a deep cut to one of his hands.  The inquest into the children’s death was conducted at the Portarlington Hotel on the same day, the 27th October 1856. At the conclusion of the inquest, Forster Shaw, the district Coroner, returned a verdict that the children had been “put to death by their mother who was at the time insane”. Catherine Finnegan was committed to trial.

ON THIS DAY – October 27, 1915


At the Morgue on Saturday, Dr. Cole, P M , city coroner, investigated the shooting tragedy at a house in Nelson street, Abbotsford, on October 27. After a quarrel, William Green, aged 32 years shot Eileen Veronica McCormack, aged 25 years, his housekeeper, who died instantly. Green then committed suicide. Mary Green, of Docker street, Richmond, said that William Green was her son. On the day of the shooting Green asked his housekeeper to come inside, as he wanted to speak to her. McCormack refused. Green took her by the arm and pulled her inside. He then caught her by the throat, and it seemed as if he was strangling her. Mrs. Green tried to pull him away and struck him over the face. Green caught hold of McCormack’s legs and threw her on the ground. Mrs. Green at once left to obtain help. During her absence shots were fired. The bedroom was full of smoke, and Green and McCormack were found dead on the floor. McCormack’s infant was sitting beside its mother, playing with the revolver.  It was stated that Green was a married man, living apart from his wife, and McCormack a married woman, living apart from her husband. Dr. Cole found that the deceased died from gun shot wounds. He was of the opinion that the shots were fired by Green but there was not sufficient evidence to show his state of mind at the time.



ON THIS DAY – October 27, 1927

Hailing a taxi-cab in Lonsdale Street at 5 o’clock on October 27, 1927, Squizzy Taylor, accompanied by two men, ordered the driver, John Hall, to go to Carlton. When he hailed the cab Taylor gave no indication of his destination beyond saying that he wished to visit a hotel in Carlton. Calls were made to several hotels in the vicinity of Rathdowne, Lygon, and Elgin streets. The movements of the men indicated that they were in search of another person or persons. Their conversation, however, gave no clue as to whom they were seeking. Eventually Taylor told the driver to go to Barkly Street. Turning from Rathdowne Street the cab had only travelled a few yards in a northerly direction along Barkly street, when the driver was told to stop. Taylor, accompanied by one of his friends left the cab, and walking some distance along the northern side of the street went into one of a terrace of houses.

The house belonged to Bridget Cutmore, mother of Snowy Cutmore.  Cutmore’s bedroom would be the scene of the final shootout with Snowy dying in his bed and Squizzy dying in St Vincents Hospital a few hours later.



On this day …….. 27th of October 1872

When Mrs Gomerson of Burrangong, New South Wales, broke open an egg to fry on this day in 1872, she discovered an entire but slightly rusted needle in the centre of the yolk. There where no sign of entry in the eggshell and the content were fresh, but the portion around the needle was a little discoloured.


ON THIS DAY…… 27th October 1902

On this day in 1902, a young man John O’Brien, who had come to Geelong, five weeks earlier from Melbourne by boat and urged a constable to lock him up, as he was too ill to provide for himself, died in the Geelong Gaol from phthisis. On a charge of vagrancy, he was sentenced to a month’s imprisonment. This term he completed a few day’s ago but as he was too ill to be removed he was allowed to remain in the Gaol Hospital. An inquiry resulted in the return of a verdict that death was due to phthisis.


ON THIS DAY – October 26, 1929


Eric Pike (15 1/2)was committed for trial by the Coroner on a charge of willfully murdering a farmer named John Willam Smith (36), at Werrimull on October 26. Smith’s body was found in some timber about a mile from his home. There were indications that he had been dragged some distance behind a cart. He had 11 bullet wounds in the head and body.

On this day ….. 26th of October 1878

On the 26th October, 1878 Sergeant Michael Kennedy and Constables Lonigan, Michael Scanlan and Thomas McIntyre rode into the Wombat Ranges searching for Ned and Dan Kelly, who were wanted for the attempted murder of Constable Alex Fitzpatrick at Eleven Mile Creek, near Benalla, on 15th April, 1878. That evening the policemen established a camp near Stringbark Creek, and the following day Kennedy and Scanlan set off to patrol the area whilst McIntyre and Lonigan remained behind. Towards evening the camp site was attacked by the Kelly’s, together with their associates Steve Hart and Joe Byrne. Constable Lonigan was shot dead whilst Constable McIntyre was captured and held hostage. The outlaws then hid themselves around the camp, and left McIntyre on view as a decoy. When Kennedy and Scanlan returned Ned Kelly called on them to “bail up”, then almost immediately the outlaws began firing and the policemen were cut down. In the confusion McIntyre was able to escape and raise the alarm. Over the next two years the Kelly gang, as they became known, remained at large, only coming out of hiding to make two much publicised raids, one on the township of Euroa, and the other at Jerilderie. Finally, in June, 1880 they received information that an associate, Aaron Sherritt, had betrayed them, and a large contingent of police were travelling to Euroa by train to arrest them. The gang moved swiftly. They murdered Sherritt, took over the township of Glenrowan and imprisoned the residents, and wrecked the railway line in the near vicinity. They then settled down to wait, planning to set upon the police party after their train ran off the rails at the point of sabotage. A local resident managed to allow the gang to release him, and he warned the approaching police and averted a disaster. Soon after the gang were cornered in a local hotel. A siege developed and Dan Kelly, Steve Hart and Joe Byrne were killed. Ned Kelly managed to escape, and returned later in his famous “suit of armour”, and attempted to shoot it out with police. Soon overpowered, he faced trial at Melbourne for killing Lonigan, and was hanged at 10.00 a.m. on 11th November, 1880.



ON THIS DAY…… 26th October 1902

Thomson Frost was brought from Camperdown to the Geelong gaol. Frost was arrester at Camperdown on this day in 1902 and charge with committing an unnatural offences. He was remanded to the Geelong gaol for a week.


On this day …….. 26th of October 1985

Uluru, in central Australia, is an inselberg, often referred to as the second largest monolith in the world, second only to Mt Augustus which is also in Australia. Also known as Ayers Rock, it was named after the former Premier of South Australia, Sir Henry Ayers by William Gosse, of the South Australian Survey Department, who became the first European explorer to see Ayers Rock. Gosse sighted Ayers Rock on 18 July 1873, recording that, “This rock is certainly the most wonderful natural feature I have ever seen”. The indigenous people of central Australia have known about the feature for many thousands of years. Uluru, which is believed to mean either ‘Great pebble’ or ‘Meeting place’, is sacred to the Aborigines. On 26 October 1985, ownership of Uluru was returned to the local Pitjantjatjara Aborigines. One of the conditions was that the Anangu would lease it back to the National Parks and Wildlife for 99 years and that it would be jointly managed.