ON THIS DAY – May 2, 1936

Committing Leslie Bennett, motor driver, of Preston, for trial on a charge of manslaughter today, the Coroner (Mr. A. C. Tingate) found that the deaths of Mrs. Marguerita Nesbitt (44), and her daughter, Marjorie, aged 10, who were passengers in Bennett’s truck when it over turned on May 2, were directly attributable to Bennett’s negligent driving.

On This Day ……. 2nd May 1900

At Geelong, a man named John Bell was arrested on warrant, immediately on his discharge from Geelong gaol, and charged with obtaining horses at Cobargo, New South Wales, under false pretences in June, 1899. He has been remanded for a week.


On this day …….. 2nd May 1829

The city of Fremantle lies just south of Perth, at the mouth of the Swan River. Dutch captain Willem de Vlamingh named the Swan River in 1697 because of the black swans he saw in abundance there. As the first city in Western Australia, Fremantle is steeped in rich and fascinating history. In 1829, Captain Charles Fremantle was sent to take formal possession of the remainder of New Holland which had not already been claimed for Britain under the territory of New South Wales. On the 2nd of May 1829, Captain Fremantle raised the Union Jack on the south head of the Swan River, thus claiming the territory for Britain. The colony of Western Australia was proclaimed on the 8th of June 1829, and two months later, Perth was also founded.


On This Day – May 2, 1974

On this day in 1974, filming began on the Jaws movie, it would become a well known thriller around the world – and the reason many would be afraid to enter the water at beaches worldwide!

Jaws was directed by Steven Spielberg and based on Peter Benchley’s 1974 novel of the same name.  In the story, a giantman-eating great white shark attacks beachgoers on Amity Island, a fictional New England summer resort town, prompting the local police chief to hunt it with the help of a marine biologist and a professional shark hunter. The film stars Roy Scheider as police chief Martin Brody, Richard Dreyfuss as oceanographer Matt Hooper, Robert Shaw as shark hunter Quint, Murray Hamilton as Larry Vaughn, the mayor of Amity Island, and Lorraine Gary as Brody’s wife, Ellen. The screenplay is credited to both Benchley, who wrote the first drafts, and actor-writer Carl Gottlieb, who rewrote the script during principal photography.

Shot mostly on location on Martha’s Vineyard in Massachusetts, the film had a troubled production, going over budget and past schedule. The shoot lasting for 120 days and costing 8 million dollars to make.  As the art department’s mechanical sharks suffered many malfunctions, Spielberg decided to mostly suggest the animal’s presence, employing an ominous, minimalistic theme created by composer John Williams to indicate the shark’s impending appearances. Spielberg and others have compared this suggestive approach to that of classic thriller director Alfred Hitchcock.Universal Pictures gave the film what was then an exceptionally wide release for a major studio picture, over 450 screens, accompanied by an extensive marketing campaign with a heavy emphasis on television spots and tie-in merchandise.

Now considered one of the greatest films ever made, Jaws became the highest-grossing film of all time until the release of Star Wars (1977).

On This Day – May 2, 1933

In folklore, the Loch Ness Monster is a being which reputedly inhabits Loch Ness in the Scottish Highlands. It is similar to other supposed lake monsters in Scotland and elsewhere, although its description varies; it is described by most as large. Popular interest and belief in the creature has varied since it was brought to worldwide attention in 1933. Evidence of its existence is anecdotal, with few, disputed photographs and sonar readings.

The most common speculation among believers is that the creature represents a line of long-surviving plesiosaurs.  Most of the scientific community regards the Loch Ness Monster as a myth, explaining sightings as misidentifications of mundane objects, hoaxes, and wishful thinking. The creature has been affectionately called Nessie since the 1940s.

The word “monster” was reportedly applied for the first time to the creature on 2 May 1933 by Alex Campbell, water bailiff for Loch Ness and a part-time journalist, in an Inverness Courier report.  On 4 August 1933 the Courier published a report by Londoner George Spicer that several weeks earlier, while they were driving around the loch, he and his wife saw “the nearest approach to a dragon or pre-historic animal that I have ever seen in my life” trundling across the road toward the loch with “an animal” in its mouth.  Letters began appearing in the Courier, often anonymously, claiming land or water sightings by the writer, their family or acquaintances or remembered stories.  The accounts reached the media, which described a “monster fish”, “sea serpent”, or “dragon” and eventually settled on “Loch Ness monster”.

On 6 December 1933 the first purported photograph of the monster, taken by Hugh Gray, was published in the Daily Express; the Secretary of State for Scotland soon ordered police to prevent any attacks on it.  In 1934, interest was further piqued by the “surgeon’s photograph”. That year, R. T. Gould published an account of the author’s investigation and a record of reports predating 1933. Other authors have claimed sightings of the monster dating to the sixth century AD.

ON THIS DAY – May 2, 1951


The body of a 30-year old married woman was found by detectives to-night buried in a three-foot grave under a house in East Oakleigh. The dead woman was Mrs. Mary Godwin, who had been missing since May 2. She was the mother of four children, the eldest nine and the youngest four.


William Francis Godwin, 34, had shot his wife, burled her body under the passage of his home, and then lived with her sister, witness alleged at the Coroner’s Court today. Godwin, who pleaded not guilty, and reserved his defence, was committed for trial on a charge of having murdered Mary Godwin, 33, mother of five young children at their home in East Oakleigh, on May 2.


Will Joan Ferguson (“The Freak”) become Top Dog of Wentworth Correctional Centre tomorrow night, or will Allie Novak take revenge for the death of Bea Smith?

Joan Ferguson’s house in Collingwood

On This Day – May 1st, 1770

Forby Sutherland was a Scottish seaman who was with James Cook during his exploration of Australia’s eastern coast. Cook sailed into Botany Bay on 29 April 1770, where he went ashore, as he and his scientists, seamen and marines explored and mapped the region. During the brief time that Cook sojourned in Botany Bay, Sutherland, who was ill with tuberculosis, died. He was buried on a southern beach in Botany Bay on 1 May 1770.

On This Day ……. 1st May 1930

Ramsay admitted that under the name of Edward Moloney, he had been convicted of illegally using a motor car on the 1st of May 1930, and sent to Geelong Gaol.

On This Day ……. 1st May 1930

Eric Harris Brockwell, aged 24 years, a clerk, was arrested by Senior Detective Sickerdick, and charged on this day in 1930, with having murdered Horace Thomas Walpole, motor-car driver, who was shot in his car on the Queenscliff road. Brockwell was taken to the Geelong gaol

On This Day ……. 1st May 1903

A man named Martin Carlon undergoing a term of imprisonment in the Geelong Gaol died on this day in 1903. An inquiry was conducted, and a verdict returned that death was due to an apoplectic seizure.

ON THIS DAY – May 1, 1967

A man on remand until to-morrow on an extradition hearing appeared in the Central Court today charged with having murdered a woman in Melbourne on May 1.

He is Raymond Patrick O’Connor, meat worker, of Castlereagh Street, City, who is charged with the murder of Shirley Bowker, 31, of Dight Street, Collingwood, Victoria.

The court was told that Mrs Bowker was fatally wounded after several shots were fired into a crowd following a brawl outside a Richmond hall.

Raymond Patrick O’Connor was again refused bail when he appeared in the City Court today charged with the murder of Mrs Shirley Bowker, 31, on May 1. He was remanded to May 31. Mr K. Colenian, for O’Connor, said his client would report to police twice daily if allowed bail.