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ON THIS DAY…….2nd August 1904

An inquest was held at the Morgue yesterday morning concerning the death of a newly born male child whose body was found on August 2 on a vacant allotment near Howe crescent, South Melbourne. The child is fully developed and had been killed by being strangled with a piece of string which was tied round the neck.

There were (in the opinion of Mr J Brett MRCS who made a post mortem examination) evidence that skilled attention had been given to the mother when the child was born. The Coroner (Dr H Cole) recorded a verdict of wilful murder by some person or persons unknown. Detectives Bannon and Mercer are making enquiries into the case.

ON THIS DAY – June 22, 1923

WEST FOOTSCRAY

At the morgue, the city coroner (Dr. R. H. Cole) conducted an inquiry into the death of a newly born female child, the body of which was found on June 22, wrapped in brown paper, between the rails, near the West Footscray railway station.
Dr. Crawford Mollison said that the child had been suffocated, but its skull had been fractured before death. The child had been murdered. Further evidence was given that inquiries to discover parentage of the child had been unsuccessful. Dr. Code found that the child died as the result of violence at the hands of a person of persons unknown. It was a case of wilful murder.

 

On This Day ……. 3rd June 1904

At the morgue the inquest into the circumstances relating to the death of the postal employe Thomas Best, was continued. ‘The particulars of the case were that Best, who was arrested on a charge of larceny, died through taking an alleged doss of strychnine. The inquiry was adjourned last Friday in order to ascertain further evidence with regard to the purchase of the strychnine. The evidence of Best’s wife was to the effect that when he became very ill she wanted to send for a doctor, but hen husband objected, sating that he would soon be better. He appeared to become better for a short time, but he rapidly became worse, and died at ten minutes past 1 on Thursday last. On being cross-examined she stated that she knew her husband bought some strychnine some time ago to poison rats, and she had thought it was used for that purpose. Shortly before his death he stated that if anything ever happened to him, he would never go to gaol. Mrs. Vale, of Kensington, who carried on business as a pharmaceutical chemist in that suburb, gave evidence relating to the purchase of the strychnine at her dispensary. On Tuesday last, he asked her for the poison for the purpose of destroying a dog. His signature in the book was witnessed by her son. According to the evidence of Dr. Mollison, death was, he believed, due to poisoning by strychnine. The brain appeared to be of an unhealthy nature. The deceased’s father, James Best, of Geelong, gave evidence to the effect that when deceased was a child his brain was unhinged through au accident. The finding of the coroner was that- death was due to poisoning by strychnine, and was self administered, and according to the evidence deceased was unsound in his mind at the time.

Blackwood Hotel is a great haunted location in Victoria close to Ballarat. Fantastic meals, and open fireplace for those cold and foggy nights. Three known hauntings ……. will you see the ghost of Laura Dalton.

The cellar also doubled as the town morgue.

ON THIS DAY – October 30, 1921

 

Vivid details of the sensational nocturnal affray at Fitzroy were given by witnesses at the enquiry at the Morgue by Dr. Cole (city coroner) to-day into the death on October 30 of John Thomas Olsen (36), clerk, Joseph Lennox Cotter (28), commission agent, was present in custody, having been remanded on a charge of having connection with the death of Olson.  Henrietta Newport, a married woman, gave evidence that on October 30 she went to a house in Regent-street. Fitzroy, where her mother resided. At about noon she answered a ring of the front door bell. A man was standing at the door lighting a cigarette, and did not answer when she asked him what he wanted, but walked into the passage, and a shot was fired by Cotter, who came out of a front bedroom. Three shots were fired. A man the witness believed to be Olsen rushed out into the street, and later, the witness saw him in the he lane where he was lying, bleeding from the nose. She went back to the house and told Cotter the man was dead. Cotter said, “If I’m pinched, I’ll be pinched.” The coroner found Cottar guilty of wilful murder and committed him for trial.

 

 

ON THIS DAY…….2nd August 1904

An inquest was held at the Morgue yesterday morning concerning the death of a newly born male child whose body was found on August 2 on a vacant allotment near Howe crescent, South Melbourne. The child is fully developed and had been killed by being strangled with a piece of string which was tied round the neck.

There were (in the opinion of Mr J Brett MRCS who made a post mortem examination) evidence that skilled attention had been given to the mother when the child was born. The Coroner (Dr H Cole) recorded a verdict of wilful murder by some person or persons unknown. Detectives Bannon and Mercer are making enquiries into the case.

22ON THIS DAY – June 22, 1923

WEST FOOTSCRAY

At the morgue, the city coroner (Dr. R. H. Cole) conducted an inquiry into the death of a newly born female child, the body of which was found on June 22, wrapped in brown paper, between the rails, near the West Footscray railway station.
Dr. Crawford Mollison said that the child had been suffocated, but its skull had been fractured before death. The child had been murdered. Further evidence was given that inquiries to discover parentage of the child had been unsuccessful. Dr. Code found that the child died as the result of violence at the hands of a person of persons unknown. It was a case of wilful murder.

 

On This Day ……. 3rd June 1904

At the morgue the inquest into the circumstances relating to the death of the postal employe Thomas Best, was continued. ‘The particulars of the case were that Best, who was arrested on a charge of larceny, died through taking an alleged doss of strychnine. The inquiry was adjourned last Friday in order to ascertain further evidence with regard to the purchase of the strychnine. The evidence of Best’s wife was to the effect that when he became very ill she wanted to send for a doctor, but hen husband objected, sating that he would soon be better. He appeared to become better for a short time, but he rapidly became worse, and died at ten minutes past 1 on Thursday last. On being cross-examined she stated that she knew her husband bought some strychnine some time ago to poison rats, and she had thought it was used for that purpose. Shortly before his death he stated that if anything ever happened to him, he would never go to gaol. Mrs. Vale, of Kensington, who carried on business as a pharmaceutical chemist in that suburb, gave evidence relating to the purchase of the strychnine at her dispensary. On Tuesday last, he asked her for the poison for the purpose of destroying a dog. His signature in the book was witnessed by her son. According to the evidence of Dr. Mollison, death was, he believed, due to poisoning by strychnine. The brain appeared to be of an unhealthy nature. The deceased’s father, James Best, of Geelong, gave evidence to the effect that when deceased was a child his brain was unhinged through au accident. The finding of the coroner was that- death was due to poisoning by strychnine, and was self administered, and according to the evidence deceased was unsound in his mind at the time.

ON THIS DAY – May 3, 1910

MELBOURNE

Melanie Dean, whose throat was cut on May 3 by John Tunks, died yesterday in the Melbourne Hospital. Tunks and Mrs Dean had been living together, and in a fit of jealousy or temper he cut her throat at the Sir Walter Scott Hotel, in Elizabeth street, and then committed suicide by cutting his own. The body was removed to the Morgue

ON THIS DAY – April 21, 1917

RICHMOND

The death of Robert Walker, licensee of the Prince of Wales Hotel, Richmond, which occurred on April 21 as the result of a wound received a few hours earlier, was inquired into at the Morgue yesterday by the City Coroner (Dr. R. H. Cole). William Gruner, a soldier, formerly of Broadmeadows Camp, who was subsequently charged with the wilful murder of Walker, was present at the inquest. After several witnesses had been examined, Dr. Cole said that, taking the evidence of the boy Walker and of the soldier Harrison, it would appear that no jury would convict Gruner of murder or of manslaughter. The provacation which Gruner had received had been very great. Walker had been suffering under some grievance, and had knocked Gruner down several times and the latter, having a knife in his possession had opened it and stabbed his adversary. It was the possession of the knife, though, which was a serious matter, but even then Gruner’s provocation was great, and it was very doubtful whether any jury, on the evidence, would convict him. He would, however, commit him for manslaughter, as the Act was such on the facts presented. Bail would be allowed in Gruner’s own surety of £50

 

ON THIS DAY…….. 3th April 1915

MELBOURNE

MOTHER COMMITTED FOR MURDER

After holding an enquiry at the morgue into the death at the Children’s Hospital, on this day in 1915, of George Lonsdale, who was two weeks old. The coroner returned a finding that the child died from poisoning, a certain preparation having been administered by his mother, Emma Leah Lonsdale, aged 17 years, who he committed for trial on a charge of murder. Bail of one surety of £600 was allowed.

 

ON THIS DAY …….. 26th March 1911

Thomas Hill, aged 72 years, an inmate of the Benevolent Asylum at North Melbourne, died on this day in 1911, under peculiar circumstances. He complained to Nurse Moroney that he was not well, and about three tablespoonful of rum in water were given to him. Subsequently he became ill, and Dr. Woinarski was telephoned for. Hill, however, died, and as there were signs of strychnine poisoning the body was removed to the morgue, and the contents of the bottle from which Nurse Moroney had obtained the rum have been forwarded to the Government analyst for examination. The officials of the asylum state that it is the custom when inmates bring in bottles of liquor to take it away from them and place it in the dispensary for medicinal purposes. This particular bottle of rum had been taken, it is alleged, from an inmate, and had been sent to the dispensary from which Nurse Moroney obtained it.