On This Day ….. 26th of June 1868

Mary Ann Hall was transferred from Yarra Bend Asylum in Melbourne on the 28th of June 1868 to the Beechworth Lunatic Asylum. On the 26th of July 1876, Hall escaped and was never found. Hall was believed to have crossed the boarder into the colony of New South Wales.


On This Day…….11th of July 1896

A lunatic named Geo. Stone, 50 years of age, escaped from the Windermere asylum in Ballarat, on the 11th of a July 1896, and entering a tram car in the botanic gardens where he rode into the city. Constable Patterson apprehended Stone, who kicked the policeman and tore the skin off his face with his fingernails of the constable before Stone was mastered and placed in a strait jacket. Stone was a farmer at Windermere, and was committed to the asylum only a few days ago. Prior to his confinement in the asylum he located his parents, both of whom are nearly 80 years of age, and lopped the tails off several horses on the farm.

On This Day…… 5th July 1883

William Blurke, a criminal lunatic, escaped from the Yarra Bend Lunatic Asylum, on the 5th July 1883. Blurke had scaled the stone walls to freedom.

On This Day …….. 27th June 1930

About midnight on the 27th of June 1930, the Daylesford police went to Bullarto in response to a report that an armed man Norman Brown aged 34, was threatening a family there. They found that a man, who it is said is an escapee from Sunbury Asylum, had secured a rifle, and during a general melee had smashed furniture in the house of a female relative with an axe and fired a riffle shot, at her beside threatening other, members of the family. When the police arrived the man barricaded himself in a room. When a demand was made that the door should be opened, the man cocked his riffle. The police guarded the house until daylight, when they forced the door and found the man lying on a bed with two rifles beside him. He was taken back to Sunbury.


ON THIS DAY – June 17, 1913

A tragic affair at the Yarra Bend Lunatic Asylum on June 17 when a patient was killed with an axe handle as the result of a sudden attack by another inmate culminated in the presentment of Arthur Dowell at the Criminal Court charged with the murder. John Joseph Tissear, medical officer of the asylum, gave evidence that the accused was suffering from dementia and could not possibly realise his position. The jury found that prisoner was not fit to plead to the presentment, and the Chief Justice ordered that he should be detained in custody during the Governor’s pleasure. Dowell was taken back to the Asylum.


On this day …….. 1st of June 1903

Walter Sovereign former warden at Beechworth Lunatic Asylum now a wood cutter. Sovereign was camping not far from Bright, North East Victoria, on the 1st of June 1903 and while boiling a billy in tho darkness after work he was surprised to find a man standing behind him. The man was wearing only a canvas bag and had no shoes. Several questions were put by Sovereign to the man who gave no intelligent continually muttering ‘ Knife” Murder and when asked questions answer simply repeating the words after him . On Sovereign picking up a knife for fear of being attacked the man disappeared in the forest. Police have since scoured the country without finding any trace of the man. He is believed to be one of two escaped lunatics.

ON THIS DAY…… 24th October 1902

A Chinese in the Geelong Gaol, named Ah Lee Goon, who was transferred some time, ago from the Melbourne Gaol on account of mental weakness, has developed into a violent lunatic. On this day in 1902, two magistrates attended at the local gaol and committed the Celestial to a lunatic asylum.


On this day …….. 26th September 1896

An inmate of the Lunatic Asylum at Sunbury, names John O’Brien made his escape on the 26th of September 1896, got on the railway line and walked towards Footscray. He was followed by a warder on horseback, but through the horse, breaking, down a ceed any further. A telephone message was therefore sent to the Footscray police and Senior-Constable McGrath and Constable Gierck proceeded to Victoria street, near where they met the escapee. He was detained here for the night, and sent back next morning in charge of warder. It appears that O’Brien, who is a powerful man, has been an inmate of the asylum for 9 years, and has often shown signs of violence, but although he endeavoured to avoid arrest, he submitted quietly when he saw no chance of escape.


On this day …….. 13th September 1949

Cyril Anthony Ashiev a 38 year old patient who was described as a thief who
escaped from the Beechworth Mental Hospital on the 13th of September 1949. Local residents have been reminded to take there keys out of there cars and lock their vehicles, shed and homes.


On this day …….. 4th September 1868

Oliver Dragoon was committed to Ararat lunatic asylum, Western Victoria, on the 10th of February 1868. Dragoon managed to escaped from the Ararat Lunatic Asylum on the 4th of September 1868. He was arrested in Piggoreet on the 11th of September and was taken into Ballarat by Constable Magrath, and lodged in the Western lockup, before being returned to Ararat. This is the second time Dragoon has escape from the asylum, on the first occasion he succeeded in evading all search for several months. Dragoon died in the asylum. On the 2nd of June 1871, Dragoone escapes again and course on the 27th of June.

On this day …….. 25th of August 1896

Two lunatics have escaped from the infamous Yarra Bend Lunatic Asylum in Melbourne on the 25th August 1896. This institution built on the Bend of the Yarra River coined the saying…….. “Your going around the Bend”.


On this day …….. 23rd of August 1933

The police have not been able to trace a patient who escaped from the Ararat Hospital for the Insane, Victoria on the 23rd of August 1933. The patient was brought to the institution from the Nhill district where he lived with his family on a farm. The patient was court in Nhill and was charged with being a lunatic at large; he was then sent back to Ararat.