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Some Australian bushrangers made their name from martyrdom, others from pure madness. In the case of ‘Mad Dog’ Daniel Morgan, the source of his infamy was definitely the latter. In June of 1864, Morgan shot a bush worker near Albury, New South Wales. He asked another worker to ride for help, then, suspecting the man would ride to the police instead, shot him in the back. Months later, he shot dead a passing police officer just for saying “hello”. In April of 1865, Morgan held up the Peechelba Station near Wangaratta and demanded that the owner’s wife play piano while he ate dinner. Upon leaving the station, he was shot by a stockman and died the following day.

 

On This Day……12th of July 1934

George Fuller alias Fairburn (41), an invalid convict, who escaped from the Gresswell sanatorium at Mont Park was arrested at Albury 12th of July 1934. Though in the advanced stage of T.B., and given only a few weeks to live by the doctor, he travelled much of the way to Albury on foot and was pitifully weak from exposure and lack of food. He staggered, into the local hospital so weak and ill that he could scarcely stand up. He asked to see the police. He is now in the local hospital in a critical condition.

Wedge-tailed eagle tries to snatch Victorian boy at the Birds of Prey show in Alice Springs
A YOUNG Victorian was left shaken and bloodied after a wedge-tailed eagle tried to take off with him at the Alice Springs Desert Park during last week’s Birds of Prey show.

The encounter, on July 6, 2016 left a sizeable gash on the boy’s face, and serves as a reminder to the unpredictable nature of Australia’s wildlife. The eagle tried to snatch a young boy at the bird show.  It is believed the boy and his family were visiting Alice Springs from Albury Wodonga. Victorians Keenan Lucas and Suze Fraser were visiting the Desert Park on the same day and witnessed the ordeal. “We’re at the bird show in the afternoon, having a great time and looking forward to seeing the wedge-tailed eagle come out for the finale,” Mr Lucas said.

“The bird then flew over the crowd and tried to grab on to a young boy’s head. “He screamed, the mother was distraught, and the presenters wrapped up the show very quickly.” Desert Park said the boy was physically OK and his facial wounds were “superficial”.

Christine O’Connell told the Herald Sun it appeared the young boy wasn’t wearing camouflage which could have confused the eagle.

“He he had a green hoodie and he kept pulling the zipper up and down,” Ms O’Connell said.

“The bird seemed agitated at the noise and all he could see would be the boys face.”

Ms Connell posted the picture on her Instagram account and explained how the eagle was meant to fly over to a log for a photo opportunity.

“Instead, he flew straight to the young boy and attacked him,” she said.

“The show was quickly cancelled and the boy was taken to first aid.”

ON THIS DAY – December 13,1899

MELBOURNE

The excitement in connection with the death of the girl Ambrose found in the Yarra is now subsiding. Mr. Blackett, the Government Analyst, now finds that the quantity of arsenic found in the body was not sufficient to cause death, which was due to suffocation. The real name of the husband of Madame Ledebur is Von Lederberg. He served a term of imprisonment in Victoria. Friday Night. The gaol authorities have reason to fear that Mme. Radalyski, alias Mrs. Ledebur, may commit suicide, had in consequence have arranged to have her watched by two female warders who are placed in the cell with her. Mme. Olga is depressed, but Ted and the girl Jamieson are quite composed. Tod’s father visited him to-day. The accused man and the girl have signed statements that the girl Ambrose died on December 13; but Dr. Neild still persists in his theory that death must have occurred several days previously. It transpires that Mabel Ambrose was a native of Albury. Her father was a well known resident there 20 years ago, and a prominent footballer. In 1879 he married Miss Bergin, a domestic, and the daughter of Patrick Bergin, blacksmith, at Germanton. The girl Mabel was the first issue of the marriage. A well-known Newcastle resident is convinced that the father of the murdered woman was the son of Mr. Ambrose, who occupied the position of telegraph master at Newcastle about 25 years ago. The latter had a son named Alfred, who became an operator, and subsequently worked In the Telegraph Department In Sydney and Melbourne. He died of fever at the latter place some time ago.

ON THIS DAY…… 16th November 1824

Explorers Hamilton Hume and William Hovell

The explorers Hamilton Hume and William Hovell, on a journey of exploration from the settled areas of New South Wales to Westernport in the Port Phillip district, arrived at the Murray River. Hovell carved an inscription in a red gum on the North bank of the river. Today the tree still stands in Albury, NSW.

ON THIS DAY…… 8th November 1929

Record broken

The man they called “the human machine”, Hubert Opperman, was in North East Victoria on this day in 1929. Opperman was seeking to set a new record time for a trip from Sydney to Melbourne. The previous best time of 47 hours and 46 mins had been set the previous year by another cyclist, George McLeod. Opperman arrived in Albury at 8:15pm and left 10mins later for Wangaratta, where a large crowd turned out to greet him on his arrival at 11.40pm. He left again and reached Seymour at 7:15am, after taking a heavy fall near Euroa. When he arrived in Melbourne at 11:40am, ten thousand people greeted him in Elizabeth st. He broke the record by eight hours.

On this day …….. 31st of October 1894

Opening on 26 September 1855, the New South Wales railway, Australia, was the first government-owned railway in the British Empire. The first line ran the 22km from Sydney to Parramatta. By 1862, the western line had reached Penrith. The railway continued to expand, reaching Albury in 1881, Glen Innes in 1884 and far west New South Wales at Bourke in 1886. On 31 October 1894, a country train bound for Goulburn, New South Wales, was hit at Redfern, Sydney, by a suburban train heading from Strathfield to the city. Two engine crew and twelve passengers from the suburban train were killed, and twenty-seven people were injured. The accident was caused by an incorrectly set signal. Among those killed were Edward Lloyd Jones, Chairman of David Jones & Co and son of the founder of the David Jones department store chain. Also killed was Father Callaghan McCarthy, Dean of St Mary’s Cathedral.

 

On this day …….. 25th September 1891

Wangaratta’s small but enthusiastic Salvation Army community turned out on this day to see their beloved commanding officer General Booth at the Wangaratta Railway Station. The General, who was on his way to Sydney, had time only to lean from his carriage as the train passed the station and shout to his followers to “fight sin, fight the devil, fight misery and fight drink”, before proceeding onto Albury. At Albury, where a change of trains was required for the trip onto Sydney, the General had more time to greet another enthusiastic crowd of supporters.

 

ON THIS DAY…… 18th September 1854

When gold was first discovered in Beechworth in 1852, John Edward Cox was one of the first to arrive and set up business. He quickly became well known in the Spring Creek Digging as a reliable and trusted gentleman. With his business growing almost overnight with more and more miners arriving in the search for gold, John made his money selling mining equipment to the miners. On an outing to Albury, John had partaken in a day’s gambling where he won 1200 pounds. In a time where you’re lucky to make a pound a week this was considered quite a windfall. On the way back to Beechworth John was robbed by a bushranger. He was made to pull his horse and cart over to the side of the road where he was hit repeatedly over the back of the head with a sharp object which punctured his skull. The front of his face was so badly fractured that he was almost unrecognisable. He then had a rope tied around his neck, the rope thrown over a branch and tied to his horse. By slapping the horse on the rump the animal walked forward and John was slowly lifted off his seat and hanged. This is known as a short drop hanging and was very common on the American gold fields. He was then robbed of his money. It was strongly believed that the killer had watched him win. Stranger though was that, almost 2 years to the day, another man was murdered in the same place and in the same manner. John’s murderer was never found. John was buried in the first Beechworth Cemetery, only to have his body exhumed in three years and moved to the current cemetery. At his funeral almost 3000 were in attendance.

 

 

ON THIS DAY…… 27th August 1934

 

Early this afternoon the body of a girl, aged about 20, was found in a sack under a culvert on the Howlong-road, about four miles from Albury, near the border of N.S.W. and Victoria. Thomas Hunter Griffiths, a leading Albury farmer, made the discovery. The body was clad in pyjamas, and was partly charred, with a towel around the neck. It is believed the dead girl had’ been under the culvert for three days.

 

 

ON THIS DAY…… 27th August 1934

 

Mrs Agostini disappeared from friends and family in late August 1934, around a week before the unidentified Pyjama Girl was found in Albury near Splitter’s Creek on the New South Wales side of the border with Victoria. The victim’s body was discovered by a local man named Tom Griffith. Griffith had been leading a prize bull along the side of Howlong Road near Albury when he saw the body in a culvert running under the road. Slightly concealed and badly burnt, the body would not have been visible to anybody driving by. It soon became apparent that the body was of a petite woman in her 20s, but her identity could not be established. After the initial investigation failed to identify her, the body was taken to Sydney where it was put on public exhibition. She was preserved in a bath of formalin for this purpose, at the Sydney University Medical School until 1942, when it was transferred to police headquarters where it remained until 1944. Several names were suggested for the identity of the dead woman, among them Anna Philomena Morgan and Linda Agostini. Both women were missing, both bore a likeness to the Pyjama Girl and both were of the right age. However, New South Wales police satisfied themselves that neither of the missing women was the Pyjama Girl and she remained unidentified. Contemporary belief is that Agostini was murdered around the same time as the Albury victim, and most likely in the confines of the couple’s Melbourne townhouse.

 

 

ON THIS DAY…… 27th August 1934

 

Linda Agostini was murdered in Carlton on the 27th August 1934, she was identified as the “Pyjama Girl”, a murder victim found on a stretch of road in Albury, New South Wales, Australia, in September 1934. Linda Agostini was born Florence Linda Platt in Forest Hill, a suburb of London, on 12 September 1905. As a teenager, Platt worked at a confectionery store in Surrey before travelling to New Zealand at the age of 19 after what was rumoured to be a broken romance. Platt remained in New Zealand until 1927 when she moved to Australia to live in Sydney. There she worked at a picture theatre in the city and lived in a boarding house on Darlinghurst Road in Kings Cross where accounts tell she entertained young, attractive men. Platt was a heavy drinker and a Jazz Age party-goer who had difficulty adjusting to stability. Her marriage to Italian-born Antonio Agostini in a Sydney registry office during 1930 was the beginning of an unhappy marriage that would see the couple leave for Melbourne to remove Linda from the influence of her Sydney friends.