Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Dolly's Dollars: The Ghosts of the South Coast Part VI






Dolly's Dollars




Around 148 years ago, in the seaside town of Robe, a little lady named Mary Ann Bryan, came to live.
No-one was sure if she was married or single, as no-one asked and she never introduced herself as such, only as “Dolly”, and that is the only name she became known by.
Dolly ran the local school, near what is now the Robe Hotel, and also a small shop from the same building which was a haberdashery, offering linen, clothing and other materials and also eventually included dress making as one of her items of sale, which in turn brought in a tidy profit.
Her school was the third school to be located in the town after the previous school mistresses passed their licences in upon getting married.
Dolly soon attracted the female squatters and settlers of the area and made a great deal of profit from them from her dress sales, but in the late 1860's she fell deathly ill, and called her maid servant, who took care of a lot of her business, to her bedside, telling her to give her desk to Mrs Peter Roberts
Dolly soon succumbed to her illness and passed away, the local papers ran notifications looking for next of kin, but no-one came forward. Mrs Roberts, concluding that the desk being given to her gave her some right to Dolly's estate made a claim for Dolly's we wealth and belongings. She was awarded a grand sum of £700 (pounds), the family up and left Robe and were never seen again.
This left about £12,000 (pounds) in the Estate curators hands, unclaimed. The money sat untouched for several years.
Eventually someone did come forward to claim the money, a young man and woman, and it was paid unto them, only for the Auditor General to discover that the young man was an officer within his won branch who took the money and his lady friend and absconded to Mexico along with three months of “Leave of Absences” pay.
Church of England Dolly's Ghost was seen within
England had no treaty of extradition with Mexico at the time so the young man was untouchable, this didn’t stop the law at the time trying to coax him out on “fishing trips” to the three mile open waters, where he could be arrested.
The young man was far to clever for the police and stayed well away from their nets, living like a king in Mexico on Dolly's hard earned money.




Meanwhile back in Robe, Dolly's body lay in the local cemetery, with no family visiting, she was a forgotten soul in the lonely cemetery until one day, whilst folk were cleaning the Robe Church of England, Dolly was seen praying inside the Church.
She stood, walked to the cleaning lady and said “I will come again”...




Dolly's grave can be found in Robe Cemetery, it is surrounded with a large, hand-hammered, iron railing....



© 2013 Allen Tiller
www.eidolonparanormal.net


All content on “Eidolon Paranormal & The Haunts of Adelaide” site, blog and corresponding media pages (eg Facebook, twitter etc) is copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study, research, criticism or review, as permitted under the Copyright Act, no part may be reproduced by any means or process without the written permission of the author. © 2012, 2013

All photos remain the property of their respective copyright owners and are displayed here for the purpose of education, research and review under the copyright act "fair usage" clause.

Some photo's used here on this site are sourced from The Sate Library of South Australia, and The National Library of Australia and http://www.gawler.nowandthen.net.au - all photos are out of copyright and have no usage restrictions implied.



Tuesday, 23 April 2013

The Legend of Ben Bounty: Ghosts of the South Coast part V


Ghosts of the South Coast
Part V

The Legend of Ben Bounty



Tantanoola, a little town not too far away from Mount Gambier was the host to a cave ghost in 1890. The Ghost was spotted by travellers on a few occasions and reported to local police, who in their duties never came across the restless spirit.
The ghost was seen in the same vicinity on the Mount Gambier to Millicent road on a number of occasions by different travelling parties.
It never once hurt anybody, or tried to communicate, but it did scare a number of young men who were riding their horses between the towns and spotted it in the moonlight, staring at them, from the entrance of the cave.
Tantanoola Caves



Not far away on the outskirts of Tantanoola comes the story of our next local ghost.
During the 1870's, a local man, known as Ben Bounty was prospecting, trying to make his fortune, looking for the legendary “gold reef” that was supposed to lay in the caves and cliffs and surrounding hills.
He visited the local quarry one day and noticed a Chinese man a sailor, who had obviously, by his dress and demeanour, been smuggled ashore near Cape Banks.
It was well known that Chinese nationals were flocking to Australia for the gold rush in Victoria, but the Vics had put a toll on the Chinese coming into their State from sea, the easiest way around was to come into Port MacDonnell or Robes ports and then walk across the border, hence avoiding the toll. Obviously, some of the shady characters couldn't risk the customs houses, and would be smuggled ashore and hidden away until the could join a travelling party and blend in.
Tantanoola Hotel
The Chinese man looked at Ben Bounty and pulled from his belt a large knife, he balanced it for only a second, then threw it at the prospector.
Bounty was never seen alive again.
A while later, the story got around about the old prospector and the Chinaman, from the very mouth of the murderer, who seemed quite pleased with what he had done.
One evening, a few young man, who had heard the rumour of Bounty's death, went to the quarry to investigate for themselves, at exactly 8 o'clock in the evening, they witnessed a white-clothed figure leaning against the wall inside the quarry. They stood and watched, one boy got brave and went a little closer to investigate.
When he was just a few yards from the man in white, the man moved just a little, and in the moonlight, the young lad could see the knife in his chest, reflect the moon!
The boys ran from the quarry terrified, and from there, the legend of Ben Bounty's ghost grew into a local ghost story told around camp fires to scare young children...


© 2013 Allen Tiller
www.eidolonparanormal.net


All content on “Eidolon Paranormal & The Haunts of Adelaide” site, blog and corresponding media pages (eg Facebook, twitter etc) is copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study, research, criticism or review, as permitted under the Copyright Act, no part may be reproduced by any means or process without the written permission of the author. © 2012, 2013


All photos remain the property of their respective copyright owners and are displayed here for the purpose of education, research and review under the copyright act "fair usage" clause.

Some photo's used here on this site are sourced from The Sate Library of South Australia, and The National Library of Australia and http://www.gawler.nowandthen.net.au - all photos are out of copyright and have no usage restrictions implied.


Tuesday, 16 April 2013

The Grinning Ghost of Mount Gambier: Ghosts of the South Coast Part IV



Ghosts of the South Coast
Part IV


The Grinning Ghost of Mount Gambier

1937, Mount Gambier, was bustling town, Adelaide's second biggest city, a tourist hotspot and plagued by a ghost!

Chronicle Thursday 24 June 1937, page 46
Endless reports over a few weeks were being filed with local police and countless of a ghost running amok on Mount Gambier s streets. Women were fainting at the sight of it, men were running away scared and the Police had very little to go, and no sightings themselves, could the ghost feel them coming and disappear?

The description of the ghost was that it was totally white, had glowing yellow eyes and a large grin.

A rumour also sprung up around town at one point of the ghost being captured and hidden away in the local Police cells, of course the police denied this.
Barrier Miner (Broken Hill, NSW  1888 - 1954)
 Thursday 24 June 1937, page 5

Two men had an interesting encounter with the Mount Gambier ghost, walking past the local primary school at 2am one morning, one of the men felt someone tap hi on the shoulder, when he turned he saw the grinning ghost staring at him.
He, and his friend, panicked, and bolted down the road as fast as they could. They soon gained their wits and courage and returned to the primary school to investigate, where they saw the ghost, who also saw them, and leapt over the fence and bolted himself!
Town Hall - photo by Allen Tiller
The men, thinking to outsmart the ghost, ran around the outside of school to the front gates, where it seemed their ghostly attacker would be heading. They were in luck! As the ghost turned the corner to exit the school, one of the men made to grab him, the ghost startled, turned and ran back the way he had come!
The two men ran to the local police station and awoke the constable there to tell him of the ghostly sighting, of course it was now too late to capture him as he had fled the scene....or simply vanished.
The two men got a very good description of the ghost, which they said looked like a man wearing a woman’s dress over his head, tied off around his waist.

Another person, this time a woman, was found unconscious in Gray street later that week, when awoken and questioned she said the ghost had surprised her when it touched her on the shoulder, she had fainted and didn't know anymore.
Another police search ensued, but again, the ghost had vanished.

Things got a little more dangerous when a local minister reported that he had been awoken during the night in his house when the ghosts had been watching him through his window. He silently pulled out his gun, and shot towards the ghost, wounding it!

After this the ghost fled into the night, and never returned again!


© 2013 Allen Tiller
www.eidolonparanormal.net



All content on “Eidolon Paranormal & The Haunts of Adelaide” site, blog and corresponding media pages (eg Facebook, twitter etc) is copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study, research, criticism or review, as permitted under the Copyright Act, no part may be reproduced by any means or process without the written permission of the author. © 2012, 2013


All photos remain the property of their respective copyright owners and are displayed here for the purpose of education, research and review under the copyright act "fair usage" clause.

Some photo's used here on this site are sourced from The Sate Library of South Australia, and The National Library of Australia and http://www.gawler.nowandthen.net.au - all photos are out of copyright and have no usage restrictions implied.


Tuesday, 9 April 2013

The Death of Captain Broadfoot: Ghosts of the South Coast Part 3



Ghosts of the South Coast
Part III
The Death of Captain Broadfoot


Port MacDonnell is located 450km south east of Adelaide, and is the southern most town in South Australia.
The area was first sighted by Lieutenant James Grant whilst sailing the ship, The Lady Nelson (now part of the Mount Gambier Tourism Centre), and later the port was named after Governor Sir Richard Graves MacDonnell
The town officially became a port on the 4th of April 1860
Coastline view from old Port MacDonell Light-house
 It is a beautiful place to visit, with an amazing scenic coastline, and one of the longest jetty's in South Australia and was second only to Port Adelaide in terms of business, shipping wool and grains around Australia and the world.

In 1853 murder came to Port MacDonell when Captain Broadfoot, Captain of the ship “Jane Lovett” (which was wrecked) was murdered by two men working locally as shepherds at Leak's Station.
South Australian Register,
 Friday 11 November 1853,

The men would do his chores, shave him, the menial household stuff the Old Captain could no longer do for himself, but would also go and plunder the old Captains wrecked ship.


One day Broadfoot saw the two men, pillaging the cargo from his ship and went to confront them, he wasn’t seen again until much later, when a man named Ferguson and a local Aboriginal found the Captain, with his throat cut, and the cut-throat razor in his left hand, the paralysed hand.

Instantly an alarm was raised in the town, the local constable who knew Captain Broadfoot very well, knew he could not grasp a bottle, let along a cut-throat razor in his left hand, and deduced that suicide was out of the question, He also knew Crawford and Stevens aided the old man on a regular basis.



The two men, Crawford and Stevens were Van-Demonians ( A term used to describe people from the then named “Van Diemans Land”, now known as Tasmania) who were very well known in the local area.
Customs House - Port MacDonell
The Two men used to visit Captain Broadfoot, who was a very old drunk with a paralysed hand, and couldn't do much for himself anymore.

The constable went to Crawford's meagre hut to question him, and quickly decided to handcuff the alleged murderer. Whilst there Crawford asked the Constable to get him a drink before he took him back to the station, of which the humble officer did, only to turn around to face Crawford again with the drink, and find Crawford holding a gun.

Crawford then uncuffed himself, stole a horse and rode off to Mount Gambier to make his escape, local gossip at the time reports that he went straight to bar that had two officers in it and ordered a drink, but made a clean getaway.

Stevens on the other hand was arrested at Mount Schanck, past Mount Gambier, where he confessed (conveniently) that he had seen Crawford slit the throat of the Old Captain, he was duly sent to trial.
Stevens trial was to be held in Adelaide, and upon getting near to the city, he escaped, ran to a butchers shop where meat was being cut for trade, and asked to have his chains cut off. The Butcher refused and a scuffle broke out, the Police were soon upon the scene, and Stevens (also spelt Stephens in some news reports) was rearrested and duly taken to the police courts.

Soon it was discovered that Crawford and Stevens were both ex-convicts and known for their criminal activity, which didn't fair well for Stephens who was duly sentenced and did time in Adelaide Gaol.
Crawford on the other hand had long escaped into the bush, but word got back to the police that he was telling everyone, that “I wont be going down without there being bloodshed” - but he was never heard from in South Australia again. It is assumed that he changed his appearance and name, and returned at some point later to recover the stolen money and valuables he had hidden somewhere near Mount Gambier.



© 2013 Allen Tiller
www.eidolonparanormal.net


All content on “Eidolon Paranormal & The Haunts of Adelaide” site, blog and corresponding media pages (eg Facebook, twitter etc) is copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study, research, criticism or review, as permitted under the Copyright Act, no part may be reproduced by any means or process without the written permission of the author. © 2012, 2013


All photos remain the property of their respective copyright owners and are displayed here for the purpose of education, research and review under the copyright act "fair usage" clause.

Some photo's used here on this site are sourced from The Sate Library of South Australia, and The National Library of Australia and http://www.gawler.nowandthen.net.au - all photos are out of copyright and have no usage restrictions implied.

Tuesday, 2 April 2013

Ghosts of the South Coast: Mount Gambier Gaol Part 2





Ghost of the South Coast
Old Mount Gambier Gaol
Part 2

Last week we looked into a little of the history of the gaol and ended our blog with some brief insight to the crimes of two of the men executed there, this week we look into the last execution at the Old Mount Gambier Gaol, that of William Nugent a.k.a. Robert Johnson, a man who killed a State Trooper, and paid with his own life.

The last man to be executed in Mount Gambier Gaol happened on the 18th of November 1881. William Nugent a.k.a. Robert Johnson had been apprehended for supplying liquor to the Aboriginals at Wellington.
Trooper Pearce had stopped Nugent, and insisted he follow him back to Kingston, off which Nugent agreed and began to follow with his three horses in tow.
Nugent knew he was in trouble, the three horses were stolen! He asked the trooper if he could stop for a while, and they did so, but the trooper insisted he remount his horse and get on with the journey, Nugent agreed, as the Trooper began to remount his horse he turned his back on Nugent.
Nugent didn’t hesitate, pulled a knife from his boot and stabbed Trooper Pearce, severely wounding the officer. Nugent fled with his three horses, with the notion of crossing the border into Victoria.
Trooper Pearce, a 24 year old young man, who had only two years earlier applied to become a Minister of the Wesleyan Church. Pearce was found on the side of the road by passers by, of which one road into Kingston to find the Sergeant.
The Sergeant sent the injured Trooper back into town by horse and cart, and then, with two other Troopers set of to find Nugent, which they did very easily as Nugent was slowed down by his three horses in tow.
Nugent was arrested and sent to Mount Gambier Gaol.
Trooper Pearce had identified Nugent as his attacker, three days later, whilst sitting in his bed, with his Mother and Father sitting next to him, the 24 year old died of his wounds.
It was said by Nugent that whilst in his cell, he suddenly felt as though someone was next to him. He distinctly heard the voice of Trooper Pearce say “ I came to tell you I hold no grudge against you Will Nugent, no doubt others will, but I do not”.

Like all three men Executed, William Nugent was buried within the Gaols walls, as the law stated during that time, although it is not known exactly where the men are buried no, it is though one may be behind cell 21, where Karen and I stayed, and the other two may be in, or nearer the courtyard where they were hung.

During our time inside the Gaol, the lovely concierge told us a few spooky ghost tales, of noises in the gaol and unusual happenings, it would seem cell four in the mens section, and the condemned mans cells seem to be most active with strange goings on, but also, a lady in white has been seen walking through the courtyard between the dining room and cells, no-one is sure who she is, but she could be one of the women who were imprisoned with her children in tow, as was normal at the time, or she could be a woman who gave birth inside the gaol, as records indicate did happen!  



© 2013 Allen Tiller
www.eidolonparanormal.net


All content on “Eidolon Paranormal & The Haunts of Adelaide” site, blog and corresponding media pages (eg Facebook, twitter etc) is copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study, research, criticism or review, as permitted under the Copyright Act, no part may be reproduced by any means or process without the written permission of the author. © 2012, 2013

All photos remain the property of their respective copyright owners and are displayed here for the purpose of education, research and review under the copyright act "fair usage" clause.

Some photo's used here on this site are sourced from The Sate Library of South Australia, and The National Library of Australia and http://www.gawler.nowandthen.net.au - all photos are out of copyright and have no usage restrictions implied.