On This Day ……. 7th of July 1928

Sentence of twelve months’ imprisonment was imposed on Albert Vincent Puddephatt aged 23, a sales manager, who was found guilty in the Geelong Police Court, for the manslaughter of Olive Myrtle Partlett, aged 26, a waitress, at Belmont. The evidence showed that the girl, with her two sisters, was walking to her home when she was struck by a motor car driven by defendant, and carried along
about 60 feet. Puddephatt’s car did not stop, but was overtaken by the driver of another car. Puddephatt was under the influence of liquor.


On This Day ……. 6th of July 1910

Mr. W. A. Callaway, acting Inspector of Penal Departments, was in Geelong on this day in 1910, and paid an official visit to the Geelong gaol. He went through theinstitution in company with the governor, Mr. G. W. Furnell, and found everything satisfactory.


On This Day ……. 5th of July 1910

A prisoner named Frank Tilker, was sentenced to six months’ imprisonment for larceny at Willaura, was brought from the Ballarat Gaol on this day in 1910 by Constable Hooley to serve his sentence in the Geelong Gaol.


On This Day ……. 4th of July 1924

The new Governor of the Geelong Gaol, Sir. T. Crotty, arrived on this day in 1924, to comment his duties. Mr. Crotty takes the place of Mr George Taylor who recently retired from the service, and who has been over 35 years in the Penal Department. Crotty had previously been at Pentridge, where he was head warden.


On This Day ……. 4th of July 1910

A postmortem examination was concluded at the Geelong gaol upon the body of a prisoner named Alexander Dickson, who was sentenced to a months imprisonment about ten days ago by the Camperdown magistrates for insulting behaviour. Death was shown to be due to a compression caused by a tumour on the brain and the coroner (Mr Read Murphy) returned a verdict accordingly.


On This Day ……. 3rd of July 1925

On this day in 1925, a young man, James Walker, alias Juries Lewis Welsh, who was discharged from the Geelong gaol after having served a sentence of six months for vagrancy.


On This Day ……. 2nd of July 1924


Six prisoners were escorted from the metropolis to Geelong by the midday train on this day in 1924. They were taken to the Geelong gaol, where the remainder of their respective sentences will probably be served. Four were from the Melbourne gaol, one from Pentridge, while the other is an indeterminate sentence prisoner. There are now six indeterminate prisoners incarcerated in the Geelong gaol.


On This Day ……. 27th of July 1913

At the Birregurra Police Court on this day in 1913, a young man named Roy Thomlinson, arrested in Geolong, was charged with larceny of £10 from H. A Brady. a local hotelkeeper. He pleaded guilty, and the bench, sentenced him to two months’ imprisonment at Geelong gaol.


On this day …….. 25th of June 1875

In the obituary notices in The Argus newspaper, it appeared the death of a person
named Elizabeth Wickets, at the great age of 103 years. She was a native of Paisley, in Scotland, but at an early age went to Lancashire, where she was
employed as a cotton-weaver. At the time when steam power looms were introduced there was a great uprising of the ignorant weavers, who thought they would lose their employment, and Wickets, who was then a remarkably tall and strong young woman, joined in the disturbances and destroying of looms, and for this, with many others, was transported to Tasmania. In that colony she married a man named John Wickets, who was her second husband, and about the time of the gold fever, the pair came over to this colony of Victoria. The man was a gipsy, and earned a living as a travelling tinker and conjuror. He was very clever at legerdemain, and was well known in Melbourne and Collingwood as “Jack the
Conjuror ” His wife used to accompany him in all his rambles, and when either had
taken a little too much drink, the other would wheel him or her in a barrow
to a hut in which they resided in what was then bush, but now forms the outskirts of Collingwood. About eight years ago “Jack ‘ received a sunstroke while on a journey up country, and returned to Melbourne, where he died in the hospital. The wife, who was now getting infirm, went into the Benevolent Asylum, but could not rest there, because, as she said, her old man’s last words to her were that she should not
allow herself to be beholden to the “pariah,” and leaving the institution, she went to
Sergeant Pewtress, whose duties had made him acquainted with her, and through his good offices she was brought under the notice of Mr Sturt, P M , who allowed her a pension of 2s a week She received some aid from the Ladies’ Benevolent Society, and was provided with lodgings in Collingwood by a family who had known her in Tasmania, and thus her last days were passed in comfort. Her age was computed from accounts she had given of the minor historical facts she remembered, and the calculation agreed with her own statements. Elizabeth was born in 1772.

On This Day ……. 23rd June 1910

In the Criminal Court before Mr Justice Hood, and a jury, the trial was concluded of Elizabeth Downey, Clara Pennington, and Minnie Long, who were charged with murdering Isabella Nelson McCallum, on the 7th of May last. Mr Maxwell addressed the court on behalf of Mrs Downey, and argued that there was no case against her. No evidence was called on behalf of Mrs Downey, nor did she make a statement. Mr Purves then addressed the court on behalf of Pennington and Long, urging that they were in no part connected with any illegal operation. His Honour, in summing, up, said the Crown did not attempt to bring direct evidence, as such crimes were done in secret. No injustice had been done to Mrs Downey by having her case heard along with the others. If the jury were satisfied that the girl did not die from an illegal operation, then there was an end to the case. Dr. Mollison had said that death was due to a certain cause, and that it was extremely improbable that the girl had done it. As regarded Long the case started with the testimony of witness McCarthy, who in the box, admitted that he committed perjury at the Coroner’s Court. It was necessary for his evidence to be corroborated, and the letters written by accused Long supplied this. The case against Mrs Long rested on the telegrams and letters written and sent by her. Then the statements of the accused Pennington were at variance with her protestations. As regards Mrs Downey, the girl died in her place on the 7th of May. There was no satisfactory explanation for her presence there. According to Mrs Butler, the girl was at Mrs Downey’s house on 5th May, while Mrs Downey said she came the night before her death. Was it credible that she was there without Mrs Downey’s knowledge? On the Friday night, according to Mrs Butler, Mrs Downey wanted to send the girl to a hospital. Why ? Was it because the girl was moribund. Why was a doctor not called sooner ? If the jury decided that Mrs Downey performed the operation, then the other two accused were accomplices, and they were equally guilty. At 1pm the jury retired to consider their verdict, and at 2.30pm returned into Court with a verdict that the three accused had been guilty of murder, and Clara Pennington was recommended to mercy. Asked if they had anything to say a why- they should not be sentenced, each accused said she knew nothing of the illegal operation.

His Honour said:

You three women have been found guilty by the jury on the facts, and have to say that I roughly agree with the verdict. The only conclusion I draw is that you have been carrying on this abominable traffic for some time. Whether the sentence will be carried out or not does not rest with me, but the Governor-General will determine that. I now order that, you be taken to the Melbourne Gaol, and from there to such place as the Governor-in-Council may direct, then be hanged by the neck until you are dead. God have mercy on your souls. On the declaration of the sentence, several women in Court burst into tears and rushed from the Court. The prisoners were then removed back to the Geelong Gaol.

On This Day ……. 20th June 1911

A vagrant from the Sale district who had been on remand at the Geelong Gaol for a week, appeared before the bench at the Police Court. Superintendent Charles stated that the man was in a shocking state of health, and suggested that he should be returned to gaol for twelve months so that he could be given a course of medical treatment. The bench considered nine months long enough, and the stranger will probably go to Pentridge for attention.

On This Day ……. 18th June 1910

Stephen Maher who was some time back fined for drunkenness by the Geelong West magistrates and failed to meet the payment within the stipulated time, but left the district; was on this day in 1910 seen and arrested at North Geelong, by Constable Stewart on a warrant of commitment for 14 days at the Geelong Gaol.