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ON THIS DAY ……. 26th March 1949

Robert Whyte Sparks, 40 years old lunatic who was described as being 5ft 9in high with long dark hair, sallow complexion, protruding eyes with a tooth missing from his upper jaw, and walks with a stoop, escaped on this day in 1949, at 4am. Sparks escaped from a heavily barred single room in a ward where the most dangerous male patients were housed. Sparks got out of his cell by forcing the window open with a piece of wire torn from the mattress on his bed. He escaped over the asylum wall by tearing two sheets into strips and platting them into a 35 foot rope. Sparks was considered a dangerous inmate and was usually kept in J ward which is strongly guarded, but he was temporally housed in the main build of Aradale. All he was wearing was a shirt when he escaped, but stole cloths from the back yard of a nearby house. Sparks had in his possession two grey white blankets with a broad blue stripe and two sheets. Large squads of armed police and warders searched densely timbered country near Ararat for a dangerous lunatic, were he was recaptured 14 hours later at 6pm.

 

 

On this day …….. 25th of January 1912

A lunatic who escaped from the Ararat Asylum on the 25th of January 1912, and who’s presence has been causing alarm to the residents of  Lake Bolac, Woorndoo and district. He was captured by Constable Conway and some locales. He had just dined at a farmer house a was walking towards Hamilton, when the police met him. He told the police that he was only looking for work. He was housed in the Caramut lock up until he could be escorted back to Ararat.

 

 

ON THIS DAY ……. 26th March 1949

Robert Whyte Sparks, 40 years old lunatic who was described as being 5ft 9in high with long dark hair, sallow complexion, protruding eyes with a tooth missing from his upper jaw, and walks with a stoop, escaped on this day in 1949, at 4am. Sparks escaped from a heavily barred single room in a ward where the most dangerous male patients were housed. Sparks got out of his cell by forcing the window open with a piece of wire torn from the mattress on his bed. He escaped over the asylum wall by tearing two sheets into strips and platting them into a 35 foot rope. Sparks was considered a dangerous inmate and was usually kept in J ward which is strongly guarded, but he was temporally housed in the main build of Aradale. All he was wearing was a shirt when he escaped, but stole cloths from the back yard of a nearby house. Sparks had in his possession two grey white blankets with a broad blue stripe and two sheets. Large squads of armed police and warders searched densely timbered country near Ararat for a dangerous lunatic, were he was recaptured 14 hours later at 6pm.

 

 

David Syme (light-shaded suit), founding editor of The Age and Ararat Lunatic Asylum Superintendent William Beattie-Smith at the front of one of the four “farm cottages” built between 1887 and 1890. In 1991 this cottage, the westernmost of the series, was then comprehensively renovated and repurposed as Unit 3 of the Ararat Forensic Psychiatry Centre.

 

On this day …….. 25th of January 1912

A lunatic who escaped from the Ararat Asylum on the 25th of January 1912, and who’s presence has been causing alarm to the residents of  Lake Bolac, Woorndoo and district. He was captured by Constable Conway and some locales. He had just dined at a farmer house a was walking towards Hamilton, when the police met him. He told the police that he was only looking for work. He was housed in the Caramut lock up until he could be escorted back to Ararat.