23 January, 2018

January 23 On This Day (Nganko Nyawiyu) in Dunolly (Lea Kurribur) History

1880 The Sydenham Company at Dunolly was paying 4 shilling 3d per share in sales.

During a violent thunder storm on Sunday evening the lightning struck a large dry tree at Scott Bros, farm, Natte Yallock East, which was set on fire. This started a bushfire, which is still burning furiously, and as there is risk of it spreading to George Nixon's standing crop, men are engaged trying to confine its limits.

1914 DUNOLLY CHARITY CARNIVAL A first class-class programme has been issued for the carnival to be held at the racecourse on Mount Hooghly-road on Wednesday, 4th February. Entries for wood chop foot and bicycle events close on 26th January with the secretary, Mr. B. Langsford. Entries for other events close 11.30 morning of sports, particulars in advertisement.

 1915 OFF TO THE WAR. This evening a social and dance were held in the Town Hall, the occasion being to give a send-off to two citizens Messrs N. Watson and S. Polinelli who volunteered for the war. During the evening the Mayor (Cr Lyndon) spoke in high terms of praise of the young men of the country volunteering in time of need to help the Mother Country, and congratulated the young men on the step they had taken. Each was presented with a shaving outfit.

1939 DUNOLLY MURDERER EXECUTED MELBOURNE. Monday. Thomas William Johnson (40), labourer, was hanged this morning at the metropolitan gaol, Coburg, for the murder of Robert McCourt Gray (73) and Adam Bunney (61), at Dunolly on October 6.
Last-minute attempts to prevent the execution of Johnson failed. Labor leaders and penal reformers carried on their efforts until mid- night.
Johnson, the condemned man, was calm and when asked by the sheriff whether he had anything to say before the sentence was carried out, indicated that he wished the execution to proceed.
No chaplain attended the execution. From the day he was condemned Johnson persistently refused the ministration of a clergyman, and seemed indifferent to his fate.
"This execution was carried out with passion and skill by one who was familiar with all his details of his work,'' the report extolled.
As well as lauding the use of a different rope and knots, the writer also welcomed the departure from the normal practice of asking the condemned person on the scaffold platform for their final message, just before the lever is pulled.
"The condemned man was asked by the sheriff in his adjoining cell if he had any statement to make...
"...instead of waiting until he was on the scaffold platform and unnecessarily hold up a procedure which should be carried out with as little delay as possible.
"Johnson had nothing to say; smoked his cigarette to the last and submitted calmly to his doom.
"Death was instantaneous,'' the report stated, although noting there was some reflex movement up and down his legs "for about one minute after the drop''.

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