On This Day – November 3, 1923

John Hanks, a elderly man employed as a watchman on the steamer Woolgar, at Port Melbourne, was strangled on board the vessel early on November 3. Aroused by screams, members of the crew rushed to the deck to find Hanks lying on the deck in a pool of blood. Life was extinct. It appeared that Hanks had invited a stranger aboard, and had spent an hour and a half in the galley, exchanging experiences and smoking. As the visitor, waa leaving, Hanks it is said, produced a revolver. The stranger knocked him down, and when the other men arrived on the scene, he was standing over Hanks’s body, his hands covered with blood.

Ragnar Dahlberg, aged 24 yean, a Swedish sailor, recently arrived in Australia, was arrested on a charge of having murdered Hanks.