On This Day…… 4th July 1857

The Buckland riot was an anti-Chinese race riot that occurred on 4 July 1857, in the goldfields of the Buckland Valley, North East Victoria, Australia, near present-day Porepunkah. At the time approximately 2000 Chinese and 700 European migrants were living in the Buckland area. Anti-Chinese sentiment was widespread during the Victorian gold rush. This resentment manifested on the 4th July 1857 when around 100 European rioters attacked Chinese settlements. The rioters had just left a public meeting at the Buckland Hotel where the riot ringleaders decided they would attempt to expel all the Chinese in the Buckland Valley. Contemporaneous newspaper reports claim that the riot was “led by Americans ‘inflamed by liquor'”. During the riot Chinese miners were beaten and robbed then driven across the Buckland River. At least three Chinese miners died reportedly of ill-health and entire encampments and a recently constructed Joss house were destroyed. Police arrested thirteen European accused rioters, however the empaneled juries acquitted all of major offences “amid the cheers of bystanders”. The verdicts of the juries were later criticized in the press. One of the police involved in the arrests was Robert O’Hara Burke, later of the infamous Burke and Wills expedition.

Aftermath – The Chinese miners were invited to return to the Buckland Valley, however only fifty did so. The Buckland Riot has been compared to the Eureka Stockade uprising in size and intensity, but is not remembered such. A commemorative monument was unveiled in July 2007 to mark the 150th anniversary of the riot.

 

ON THIS DAY……. 23rd May 1926

In his opening address at the inquest into the death of Lim Kwong, chinamen aged 62 years, at the Mansfield Court House, Inspector Koetsveld caused a stir. Kwong, who was a Chinese market gardener, was found murdered on this day in 1926. The inspector said that Phillip (Bert) Woods, who was in custody charged with murder, had stated while an inmate of Pentridge Prison that he intended to rob Kwong. Woods was alleged to have added that if the Chinese resisted he would “knock him.” Two prisoners from Pentridge were in court in custody giving evidence.

 

ON THIS DAY – November 17, 1889

Constable Coffey on Friday night arrested a man named John Caffrey on a charge of wilfully murdering Ah Gayong in Market-lane on November 17. It will be remembered that the Chinaman was killed by a couple of roughs who attacked him without any provocation.

 

 

Join us this weekend at either the Geelong Gaol or in Melbourne’s Chinatown – spots left on all tours! Bookings are essential and can be made at www.twistedhistory.net.au or 1300865800

Friday Night

  • Ghost Tour at Geelong Gaol at 8pm
  • Paranormal Investigation at 9.30pm OR
  • Deadtime Tour at midnight
  • Chinatown Murder Tour at 8pm

Saturday Night

  • Ghost Tour at Geelong Gaol at 8pm
  • Paranormal Investigation at midnight
  • Chinatown Murder Tour at 8pm

 

ON THIS DAY – November 4, 1924

At an inquest into the death of William Paterson Graham, aged 38 years of age, who was fatally stabbed outside the Chinese Nationalist Club, Little Bourke street, Melbourne, on November 4, Harry Yock Kee, aged 29 years, was committed for trial for the murder or Graham.  Evidence was given by Alexander Read that he and Graham entered the club on the night of November 4 and watched some Chinese playing billiards. Roy Charles Ledow, a half-caste, requested them to leave, but Graham began to mark the game. Ledow insisted that he should leave, and they both walked to the door. Yock Kee helped to bustle them out. Read’s hat fell off in the scuffle, and when he turned round after picking it up he saw Graham wounded on the ground.

 

 

 

ON THIS DAY – October 18, 1953

 

Walter Grenfell, 57, of Gordon House, City, had been suffering from a heart disease for some time and was always “a candidate for death,” Mr. Wade, S.M., City Coroner was told yesterday.  After hearing this evidence from Dr. W. M. Keane, medical superintendent of St. Vincent’s Hospital, and Dr. K. M. Bowden, Government pathologist, the coroner found that Grenfell died of heart failure. On October 18, at the city watchhouse, Arthur Clive Byrum, 20, laborer, of Gordon House, was charged with having murdered Grenfell, who was found dead in a room at Gordon House,  Shortly after Mr Wade announced his finding yesterday, a special sitting of the City Court, under Mr. McLean, S.M., discharged Byrum. Detective – Sergeant John Adam told the coroner that on Sunday, October 18, Byrum carne to him and said he had killed a man In a room at Gordon House by placing a pillow over his face.

 

 

Have you joined the Twisted History team on tour yet …..

Join us this weekend in Chinatown and the Geelong Gaol on a murder tour, ghost tour or even a paranormal investigation ….. Are you brave enough to step over to the darker side of history?

 

Geelong Gaol – Availability left on our ghost tours for Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday nights, paranormal investigation on Friday night and Sunday night and our Deadtime investigation on Friday night

Chinatown – Availability left on both our murder tours on Friday and Saturday nights

Bookings can be made online at www.twistedhistory.net.au or 1300865800

ON THIS DAY…… 26th September 1853

Elizabeth and Michael Finnessy were married in Burra, South Australia, they had two children who had both died. The couple had moved to Victoria and lived in a small house in Chinatown. A week before Elizabeth was murdered, she had found at that her husband was married to another woman, who was still alive. With this news Elizabeth began to drink heavily and was locked up in the watch house to sober up. On being release she was taken back to her house to speak with her husband. Sitting in the lounge room Michael said “Won’t you speak to me Lizzy” and upon this the man who lived in the house with the couple left the room, thinking they would become reconciled.  Remaining just outside in the street, he heard a pistol shot. Returned to the room he saw Elizabeth stumbling across the room, she returned to the part near where she had been sitting, and falling under the table.

She was raised up and placed upon a sofa in the room, but was barely able to speak. In a soft voice she begged the man who placed her there, to fetch a priest, as she knew she was dying. So didn’t speak again and died within 10 mins.

Her husband, almost immediately after the dreadful deed, rushed into the next room, and proceeded to reload the pistol, but was stopped before he could kill himself. He was arrested and charged with his wife’s murder. Michael was executed on the 25th of October 1853, at the same time as another murderer. After hanging the usual time, one hour, the bodies were taken down and conveyed to their destination at the Melbourne Cemetery.

 

 

 

ON THIS DAY…… 6th September 1884

A Chinese storekeeper named Ah Goon, of Little Bourke-Street East, was murdered in the early hours of the morning on the 6th of September 1884. The place was a gambling den, and it was found that a sum of £200 or £300 was stolen by the murderer or murderers. A post-mortem examination has been held, and the cause of death has been given as Serous apoplexy, accelerated by fright, and the result of a wound on the face. Two Chinese have been arrested on suspicion, however they we never charged with the murder due to the lack of evidence.

On This Day – August 29, 1880

An attempted double murder and suicide occurred at Echuca East on August 29 amongst the residents of the Chinese quarter, which created some sensation. The cause of the affair was a woman. A Chinaman named Georgo Cooey Foo, a well-known dangerous character, who has already served a sentence in Delinquin gaol for stabbing a man, fired at a woman named Sarah Newell and a countryman named William Ah Loon. Cooey Foo has been employed as cook on board the Lady of the Lake steamer. Ah Loon filled a like position on the South Australian steamer Cadell, and when recently at Echuca he was robbed of a £5-note by another Chinaman named James Ah Poo. Ah Loon came to Echuca to be present at the trial of Ah Poo, who, however, had absconded from his bail. Ah Loon then, in the absence of Cooey Foo, took up with the woman Newell. This enraged Cooey Foo, who purchased a revolver — six chambered pin-tire— and he went to Echuca East on August 29, and saw the woman Newell in bed. He fired two shots at her, neither of which took effect. Ah Loon then came to the rescue, and was fired at, but missed. He rushed Cooey Foo, and was shot in the head. The bullet glanced off the cheek-bone and emerged at the neck. Dr. Croker was called in, but unless erysipelas sets in danger is not apprehended. Senior-constable Nedwell arrested Cooey Foo on the capital charge of shooting with intent to murder. Cooey Foo admitted the shooting, and said he was sorry he had been baulked in his design of shooting both. He swallowed a piece of opium, but an emetic caused him to vomit, and he is now out of danger. Cooey Foo had written a letter to a countryman, in Chinese characters, saying he would be dead when the letter reached his friend, and telling the latter to get his watch, clothes, and money.

Are you apart of a group who is trying to raise money or are you looking for that perfect fundraising idea. Twisted History can help…… Book one of our tours – ghost tour, paranormal investigation tour or murder tour and for ever person who books Twisted History will give you $10. This is an easy way to make $300

 

 

Get into the Spirit of Christmas…..

Are you after a staff christmas party with a difference, join the team at Twisted History for a night you won’t forget. From ghost and paranormal investigation tours at the old Geelong gaol, paranormal investigation and cemetery tour of Blackwood or crime and murder tours of Melbourne.

For information and bookings please call 1300 865 800