ON THIS DAY ……. 30th March 1870

A fearful explosion of gunpowder occurred at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, at Martin’s Gap, twelve miles from Mansfield. Two waggons were proceeding to Jainieson with a general cargo of merchandise. One of the waggons was loaded with seventy-five kegs of gunpowder, which, by some unexplained cause, exploded. The waggon was smashed to atoms, and the effects of the explosion were felt at a distance of three
miles. William Jewell, the driver, was literally blown to pieces. The head and arms were found in one direction, and the legs were shot into a tree forty feet from the ground, and 150 yards from the scene of the accident — Five horses belonging to Jewell were killed on the spot.
Cruikshank, the driver of the other waggon escaped without injury, but the horses were terribly burned, and the waggon knocked to pieces.