Trentham Police Cells – rare double Cells

The history of this double Police Cells is not clear. It may have been brought to Trentham in 1879. It is a prefabricated Portable two cell police lock up and was only one of four built in Victoria and the only known servicing one. You can see rods make up the whole frame of the cells, including the roof and floor. The cell us four times larger than the normal Portable cell.

Trentham Portable Cells

This is a standard Public Works Department prefabricated Portable one cell police lock up. The boards are all numbered for ease of construction. There was a single cell lockup on the site when the Trentham Police Station opened in 1885-1886.

Port Melbourne Murder

At the Melbourne Criminal Court the negro Frederick Jordan was brought up for trial, charged with the murder of Minnie Crabbe (nee Hicks) at Port Melbourne on the 6th July 1894. The prisoner, who pleaded not guilty, challenged a large number of jurors. The evidence for the prosecution was gone into, and it had not concluded when the court rose. Jordan was housed in the Port Melbourne Police Cells.



In connection with a child murder at Serviceton on the 30th of June 1898, an arrest was made at the town by the Kaniva police. The officers took into custody a young servant girl who has resided in the district for many years and is respectably connected. The young girl was housed in the police cells under the Servicton train station.

Charged with murder 27th feb 1879

A man was charged with having murdered a member of the Carmelite order, Brother James Thomas Butler, and was remanded to appear in the City Court in Melbourne on March the 5th 1879. Stephen John Eiszele, 21, of no fixed address, murdered Brother Butler at Kaniva, Western Victoria, on February 20th 1879. Eiszele was housed in Kaniva police cells.


Two youths were detained on the 19th of October 1932, by the police investigating the murder of Joseph Sybley (47), the manager of the Whittibsea Hotel. Both boys were housed in the Whittlesea police box. Soon after the patrol car arrived at Whittlesea to take the young men Melbourne. The police believe the motive of the murder was robbery for £32. Bernard Boyd (18, a clerk of Port Melbourne) and a youth aged 16. They were remanded till October without bail.

Whittlesea police cells

What a great episode of Wentworth on Tuesday night….. the story line for season 5 is shaping up to be the best so far. What will happen between Liz Birdsworth and Sonia Stevens? Will the Freak become Top Dog?
Photo of Sonia Stevens’ house Williamstown.

Sgt Tom Croydon – Blue Heelers
After a day out in Williamstown, it was great to see that Sgt Tom Croydon’s first house from Blue Heelers hasn’t changed. Fans of Blue Heelers, did you know that Croydon’s house is in the same street as Maggie Doyle’s?

Will Franky Doyle escape from Wentworth Correctional Centre this week? Will she head back to Mike Pennisi’s home to look for evidence? Is Franky innocent?
Mike Pennisi’s house in Williamstown.

EXECUTION ON THIS DAY………….30th April 1847


The sad penalty of the law was carried into effect upon Ptolemy and Bobby, the two unfortunate Murray blacks, convicted as the principals in the lamentable murder of the late Mr. Andrew Beveridge, jun. As we stated in our last, ever since the announcement of their doom to them, the culprits evinced a keen sense of their situation—Ptolemy bore it with much strength of mind, but it was too much for Bobby. Day after day he pined away in his cell, and grew more nervous to the last moment. The attentions of Mr. Protector Thomas worked a considerable improvement in the minds of the ill-fated beings. They fully felt their fate, and began to entertain a dim idea of an all-seeing Providence. On the morning of their execution, both appeared to be extremely ill at ease, and the workings of their muscles evidently betrayed the inward operations of their feelings: Bobby especially seemed unmanned. At the usual hour, the fatal procession left the “condemned cells,” and advanced on its fatal journey to the tread-mill yard, where the gallows was erected. The prisoners were attended by Messrs. Thomas, French, and Lacey, the latter having acted as one of the interpreters on their trial, and when they arrived at the foot of the scaffold, they appeared to be much distressed. Both burst out crying, and could scarcely be restrained. Previous to the pinioning, Mr. Thomas read prayers, and as well as he could endeavoured to impress them with the nature of the awful proceedings. On ascending the ladder, Bobby was scarcely able to stand, and required the assistance of Mr. French. Ptolemy, though completely exhausted, possessed much more presence of mind than his companion. On mounting the platform, Bobby could not face the crowd congregated outside, and turned round, but Ptolemy stood, as if in the calmness of death awaiting the moment when he was to plunge into the abyss of eternity. The executioner was, however, busy at his work, the ropes were adjusted, the caps were drawn down, the bolt was pushed, and the drop fell. Ptolemy expired instanter, without a struggle, his neck being broken in the shock. Not so with Bobby, as when the drop fell, he endeavoured, as a last effort for life, to get his foot on a portion of the platform. This broke his fall, and almost turned him head over heels, in consequence of which his struggles were protracted and severe. After hanging the usual length of time, the bodies were cut down, coffined, and interred. A number of persons were present, including many aboriginals, and a majority of women. This is highly disgraceful, but there is no use in remonstrating, the female sex must have its way, despite public opinion, the press, or even the dictates of every principle consonant with humanity.


On this day …….. 30th April 1919

At the Richmond station, on an island platform, a hundred or so schoolchildren looked wonderingly at the train which came on without an engine on this day in 1919. Melbourne successfully completed its first electric train trials on the Sandringham-Flinders Street line.


On This Day ……. 30th April 1867

On this day in 1867, William Lane, was taken into custody by a policeman, and when on his way to the Geelong watch house he was followed by a large crowd of men and boys, who, it was said, would probably have rescued the lad if the apprehending constable had not received assistance. The prisoner was sentenced to gaol for a fortnight in Geelong.