The Axedale Incendiarism

from: The Kerang Times and Swan Hill Gazette, 05 Oct 1886, page 5

THE AXEDALE INCENDIARISAM At the Sandhurst police court on Wednesday September, 29th, a young. man, named Robert Elliott was brought up on remand from Drouin, charged with unlawfully and maliciously setting fire to two stacks of corn, the property of Lazarus Bros., and valued at £500, at Axe Creek, on the 21st January last.

Mr. Connelly prosecuted, and Mr. ,Rymer defended the prisoner. who pleaded “Not Guilty.” : Detective A. G. Sainsbury deposed that he conducted the investigation into the firing of the stacks of Messrs. Lazarus Bros.

He visited the scene on the 22nd January, the day after they had been set fire to, and saw two stacks still burning. He saw bootmarks of a man as if he had been running from the stack. The tracks corresponded with a boot produced, which he received from the prisoner, who said he wore it when he set.the stack on fire. The boots corresponded exactly in length and, breadth.

With the assistance of the Government black-trackers, they traced the prints first easterly to the creek, and then in a southerly direction towards Doak’s: After following them 33 chains, they were lost at Doak’s brush fence.

He saw Elliott that day, and spoke to him, also to other men there. Prisoner, to the best of his belief said he knew nothing about it. On the 8th of this month, he went to Drouin with Mr. (unreadable) to conceal himself on the ceiling of the lockup. The ceiling was of logs and some had spaces between them.

Prisoner and a man named Bush were in the cell. Mr. Rymer:” I object to anything being put forward which was said by the prisoner. There was no doubt that a confession was made in writing, and that must be handed in”.The bench overruled the objection.

Witness, proceeding, said with reference to the conversation, he overheard that Bush I asked Elliott ” How is old Lazarus getting, on,” and Elliott replied ” I don’t know; you must not say I ever let you know of the fire. That red-headed Irishman,who was manager for Lazarus is dead.” Bush said ” Is that the overseer that came to Doak’s where they were threshing and said the machine was useless?” Elliott replied ” Yes.” and Bush asked him. if that was the night of the fire. Prisoner. answered “Yes don’t speak too loud” Bush continues, “Did you set fire to all the stacks?”. ” Prisoner replied, ” I only set fire to one, and the other must have caught from it.” Bush said, “I suppose you ran then,’. and prisoner answered, “My —-oath I did.”

Prisoner was heard to say, also that Doak said the fire served Lazarus right. On the following morning,witness saw prisoner, who said he thought he had seen him (witness) before. Witness told him who he was, and he recollected.

After further conversation he told prisoner he had come over about the fire and that he suspected him. He then said he never fired the stacks,and asked him if Bush had told him. Witness replied, “I heard you say so to Bush, when you asked him not to tell”.

Witness showed him where he had been concealed. Prisoner said “Oh, well, it’s no use denying it. I did burn Lazarus’ stacks. I set fire to one of them.” Constable O’Meara, the lockup-keeper, then came to the door, and prisoner continued that he set the stack afire because “the overseer wouldn’t have the old man’s machine or the other cockeys (farmer’s) either”.

He said his father never told him to do it. Prisoner said he had no objection to repeat the statement to some other person. Witness asked him whether he was willing to go to Sandhurst and be tried for the offence. Prisoner replied “I may as well be in gaol. I did it, and must put up with the consequences”.

Prisoner then went with him to the Shire hall next door, and made a statement before :Mr. Startup, J.P. and Mr. Beckwith. Prisoner signed the document (produced), after it had been read over to him.

Witness subsequently swore an information against him. He never induced the prisoner by threats, promises, or anything to make the confession.

Later on that day, witness was at the police station. and prisoner.sent for him. He went to him, and prisoner said ” I suppose you heard me telling Jack Bush that Doak said it was a good job. Well, Doak never said it at all.”  Prisoner gave him as a reason for saying so that he thought Bush would refrain from telling anyone.

To Mr. Rymer: Prisoner was in gaol at Dronin on a charge of false pretences. He put Bush in the lockup as a means of hearing hearing what prisoner said. He was sure that Bush was not put in for being drunk.

There was no charge against Bush, who consented to be locked up. Bush first told witness that prisoner had informed him when at Shelbourne, he had fired the stacks.

There is a reward of £100, which he now thinks Bush will receive. The boots of the man Boyle, who was first arrested on suspicion, were No.8,. and fitted the track. Boyle never made a statement that he had fired the stack.

Samuel and Daniel Lazarus, the owners of the stacks destroyed, William Doak; farmer, Axedale, and Peter Alias, laborer, who saw the prisoner hurrying along the road from Lazarus’ at the time of the fire, gave evidence, and the prisoner was committed to take his trial at .the Assize Court on the 14th October next.

from wikipedia: incendiarism – Dictionary definition and meaning for word incendiarism. (noun) malicious burning to destroy property. Synonyms : arson , fire-raising. the British term for arson is fire-raising –

(Punctuation and paragraphs have been added to the above transcription for ease and speed of reading)

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Welcome Home Social for Serviceman 1918

from: The Bendigo Independant, 18 October 1918, page 8

COUNTRY NEWS.

AXEDALE.

A welcome home social and presentation was given to Private Geo. Macumber on Wednesday night in Mr. E. Drake’s hall, which was nicely decorated with flags, flowers, etc. by the local red cross ladies.

Cr. J. Hodge presided over a large gathering. The chairman, in opening the proceedings, proposed the toast of the King which was drunk with musical honors.

The chairman, in a very nice speech, made reference to the way in which the guest of the evening, had served his country. Mr. V. Deane and other speakers, also referred to the guest of the evening.

The chairman presented Private Macumber with a nice gold medal as a token and a small remembrance from the people of Axedale. Private Macumber made a suitable response.

The toast of the guests’ parents was proposed by Cr. J. Hodge, who referred to Private Macumber, and also another brother, at present doing his share at the front. . Mr. Joseph Senior, a friend of the family, responded on their behalf.

The toast of the ladies was proposed by Mr. Deane, who referred to the manner in which they had decorated the room and tables, the good things provided, reflecting great credit on them. Mr. J. Hamilton responded.

A vote of thanks was accorded the secretaries, chairman and performers who contributed items during the evening and helped to make this first welcome home social such a great success.

An enjoyable dance followed. The music for the social and dance was supplied by Mr. J. Dunn, and Mr. J. Brook made a successful M.C.

(Punctuation and paragraphs have been added to the above transcription for ease and speed of reading)

Typhoid At Axedale 1914

from: Bendigo Advertiser, 10 November 1914, page 5

TYPHOID AT AXEDALE

A second report by Dr. Gaffney stated – “I inspected the houses where there had been typhoid fever, and especially the sanitary conditions of those dwellings and outhouses. I find there are two sanitary systems in vogue – one a “pan” system and the other the “pit” system.

In a great number of instances the articles used as ‘pans’ were much too small to be adequate. It must be borne in mind – and this is most important – that not only solid but also liquid excretia must be provided for as as the typhoid baccillus is demonstratable in the urine voided by typhoid patients. Given that the receptacle is adequate for both forms of excreta, the next thing is to consider the disposal of the contents.

Burial at a depth of at least 2 ft is essential and in such a place, that there is no possibility of the infection of water supply. There should be provided in the privvies in this system, some disinfectant solution which should be used regularly. It is also very necessary that these receptacles should be protected from flies, which are a most important factor in the dissemination of typhoid fever.

The pit system is a good one if the precautionary measures mentioned later are carried out conscientiously. But if these precautions be neglected, then the pit system would be an extremely pernicious one.

Carelessness or neglect of the precautions would form each pit into an incubator for the typhoid bacilli and would increase in number and virulence to an enormous extent. The first essential is that there be provided a large amount of lime at hand and that each person use it freely.

The second is the protection from flies, as in the other system.

All water for human consumption must be boiled, and all milk sterilised, and scalded.

All food must be protected by means of wire covers, etc from flies. Cleanliness of person, especially in those who have the handling of food, is of paramount importance.

I am afraid that there is going to be a good deal of typhoid fever this year, and in order to check it,  and prevent it getting a hold on the community, it will be necessary to exert the utmost care in every detail.

With regard to Axedale, the distressing seasonal conditions prevailing are the most important factor in this outbreak, and the small number of typhoid cases during the past couple of summers, has given rise to a certain amount of carelessness on the part of the residents, which must be guarded against this summer”.

(Punctuation and paragraphs have been added to the above transcription for ease and speed of reading)

O’Keefe Rail Trail Marathon

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Recently, a previous post, the O’Keefe Rail Trail  was highlighted. This has become a very popular cycling trail from Bendigo, through Axedale and to Heathcote.  Axedale is a major destination, as the halfway point. Many ride the route Bendigo-Axedale-Bendigo, with more experienced riders riding the entire route and return.

Last Sunday, 1st May, the inaugural O’Keefe Rail Trail Marathon was held and as the article in the McIvor Times, below, shows, the event was a huge success. There are plans to make it a permanent event on the calendar of Fun Runs.

Another win for the Axedale and Heathcote communities. Big congratulations to all who competed.

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Transcription: Runners from all over the country braved unexpected cold, wet and windy conditions to tackle the rail trail course on the historic O’Keefe Rail trail joining Bendigo and Heathcote.

Eighty-two marathon runners braved chilly early morning conditions at Bendigo’s Catholic College in Junortoun after a long night of wild weather across the district, led out by pacer and current Victorian marathon champion Brady Threlfall.

Another 460 people also ran in the other events including the quarter and half marathons to bring the total to 552 participants overall.

District runners enjoyed a home course advantage, with 13 year old Jamie Cook of the Bendigo Harriers Athletics Club in his first marathon coming home the winner in a fantastic time of 2.34.10 prompting many to comment they could be looking at a future Olympic champion.

Cook said he was overwhelmed by the win, which he wasn’t expecting considering he was running in his first competitive marathon against far more experienced runners, but was also delighted with how the race progressed.

“I was a bit worried because I thought it might get a bit lonely out there on the trail, but there were so many spectators and volunteers out there cheering us on, it was a great run.

“The conditions were tough with a really big head wind, but it was good to get out in it. It’s important on a course like this one to hold yourself back at the start because it’s a challenging course and you risk not having the energy to finish,” Cook said.

The women’s race was won by Sarah Jalim of White Hills and a member of the Bendigo University Athletics club, who was running in her 10th marathon.

Jalim finished eighth overall behind the top seven male runners, and with the assistance of Threlfall in the later stages of the race, achieved an impressive time of 3.12.26, beating her previous personal best time by 18 minutes.

The times of the winners highlighted the O’Keefe Rail Trail could be considered the fastest off-road, nonbitumen marathon in the country.

The placegetters in the men’s marathon were Kennington based runner Stephen Freemantle in a time of 2:46.49. Third place and 45+ winner was David Meade, a past Australian Triathlon Champion, in 2:53.25 and another local Bendigo athlete from the Bendigo University Athletics club. In second place for the women’s race was another Kennington based runner Els Viester running a 28 minute personal best with a time of 3:30.11 and another member of Bendigo University. Castlemaine resident Karina Taylor was third with a time of 3:47.34 and also first in the 45+ female category.

The most popular event on the day numbers wise was the unique Ekiden Relay supported by Bendigo Stadium over the Marathon distance, one of only two relays in Australia run over the marathon distance.

A total of 29 teams with 7 runners each had 203 athletes battle out the unique event with runners waiting at change over points along the trail for their chance to run.

The Ekiden was won by one of the four teams from the ‘Eaglehawk Athletics Club’ in this case the Men’s team in a time of 3:06.45.

Second place was the ‘Castlemaine Park Runners C Team’ just behind the winners in 3.08.12, while third place was a local team called ‘The Year Of’ made up of Bendigonians.

The comradeship of the event was evident with several teams joining their last runner to all cross the line together in a show of unity.

A total of 112 athletes started in Heathcote for the 21.1km half marathon, sponsored by the Athletes Foot, Bendigo.

Runners ran out just past Lake Eppalock into a stiff head wind and returned back the same way with a tail wind to the finish.

Ben Fahy was the winner in a time of 1:21.21 from Bendigo Harriers athlete Ben Stolz 1:22.50 and another Bendigonion Luke Crameri 1:25.01.

Victor Cook of the Bendigo Harriers was first in the 45+ age category with a time of 1:32.29.

The women’s half marathon was won by Rebecca Cladingboel of Moama in a time of 1:32.53, while Mia Franzmann of Shepparton was second and winner of the 45+ age category in 1:36.04, and Jacinda Herrett of Wharparilla was third in 1:38.49.

Another 80 runners ran in the challenging quarter marathon course over 10.558 km’s from Heathcote.

Star local athlete and Victorian state representative Matthew Heislers from the Bendigo University Athletics Club won in a fast time of 37.12 as well as taking out the Under 18 event.

Sean Williams of Edithvale 39.12 was second and Philip Barrett of Essendon third 41.44.

The women’s Quarter Marathon and also the Under 18 event was won by state representative and one of the brightest rising stars in distance running Taryn Furletti.

Just 13-years-old, the Seymour teenager from the South Bendigo Athletics club ran exactly 44 minutes.

In second place and also winner of the 45+ age category was Vicky Gunn 45.32 of Moama from Cindy King 46.02 of Edithvale.

A total of 43 runners and many of them juniors took part in the O’Keefe Mile and it was the girls that won the day with Bendigo Harriers athlete Zahli Drummond winning in a time of 6.24.

The first boy over the line was Oscar Fox in the Under 11’s in a time of 6.35, while other age category winners were Isaac Willits (U15 boys), Georgia Smith (U11 girls), Jude Barrett (U9 boys) and Renee Ford (U9 girls).

The final race was 500m for the 8 years and under runners, with 32 youngsters eager for their time to shine on the O’Keefe Trail.

Even the challenging conditions the weather threw at the district with its deluge in the early hours of the morning and its resulting mini floods, ferocious winds, rubbish and debris thrown about did not deter the runners and their families, event director Sandra Slatter ecstatic with the success of the event.

“Securing Mandalay Resources as the gold sponsor of the event for three years to ensure its financial future is vital for it to be viable”, Ms Slatter said.

“With 188 participants coming from outside the region as well as the locals to participate, the race is attracting participants from all over the state and country and bringing significant funds into the region.

“True community spirit was ignited with over 100 people volunteering, the vast majority locals from Heathcote, to ensure the event ran effectively.”

 

Read more here   about the O’Keefe Rail Trail Marathon from the point of view of a competitor. Jane Anderson from  Toolleen Country Retreat Boarding Kennels ran her first marathon, very successfully.

*Toolleen is about 10 kilometres from Axedale.

Sources: mcivortimesnewspaperdirect.com     and  jane.run

Honouring Axedale Soldiers

from: The Bendigonian, Tuesday 9 March 1915, page 12

HONORING AXEDALE SOLDIERS

Axedale 3rd March

A well-attended meeting was held in Drake’s Hall ,last night to make arrangements for a send off to the three Axedale soldiers at present in camp at Broadmeadows, viz. Messrs. F. Bennett, E. Burke, and F. Millington. Cr. S. Doak presided.

It was decided to hold a social and present each soldier with a gold medal suitably inscribed, on a date to be arranged. Several ladies were present, and they will have charge of the arrangements in connection with the supper.

With Anzac Day coming up, there will be posts about the Axedale Soldiers who lost their lives

Axedale – An inland seaside resort?

Axedale a seaside resortCAMPASPE STORAGE BASIN
(To the Editor of the Advertiser)
Sir, —In deciding to construct a storage basin on the Campaspe at Kimbolton or ??  {unreadable words}, as it is officially known, to supply the off-take weir at Elmore, which is to irrigate some 40,000 acres, south of the Waranga Loddon channel, the Water Commission have not to my idea, fixed on the east site, and I have no hesitation in saying this, for I have known the river some 50 years.
One of the great factors to the success of a storage basin is to have the stored water spread over as little area as possible, so as to check evaporation in summer and seepage all through the year.
This is impossible at the selected site, as no river vallev worth speaking of, exists and the water will be spread over a large area outside the river banks of no great depth.
The site I am in favor of, and one well known to all Bendigonians, is at Axedale, just
below the road bridge, and opposite Ingham’s quarries. Here is a magnificent, river valley, perhaps unequalled in the State for such a purpose, from 250 to 300 yards wide, the banks rising 80 to 100 foot high, while up the stream the valley opening out over the Marydale flat, on one side and the racecourse on the  other, with the high banks still around, forms a basin almost a mile wide, giving a great depth of water over the whole area.
This site also has the advantage that the racecourse and police paddock are Crown lands, costing nothing for resumption, also has an increased watershed of great value.
I know that the railway and road bridges would be submerged, but in these days of
advanced engineering, it would not be impossible to carry the traffic of both over the
barrage wall. Such would mean a deviation of the railway line through Axedale township,
but it would have the advantage of bringing the station, now a mile away, right, into the township, open up the blue stone quarries on each side of the river, and make Axedale a seaside resort,  on account of its direct railway communication to what would
be one of the finest inland lakes in the State.
Again the impounded water could be used for turbines to generate electricity for the
use of the Bendigo mines and other industries, also for electric lighting and traction
for electric railways and buses and many other things of which we are in need and
behind the rest of the world.
Bendigo should look well into this matter, as it concerns them as deeply as the farmer
on the northern plains, and it may mean the very life of the mining industry, where a cheap motive power is very badly needed.
yours etc.

11th August, 1908. FARMER.

(Punctuation and paragraphs have been added to the above transcription for ease and speed of reading)

 

New Church at Axedale 1902

from:  Bendigo Advertiser, Saturday 16 August 1902, page 3.
The new Roman Catholic Church at Axedale, which has been designed in the early
English style of Gothic architecture, stands on a very commanding site close to the centre
of the township. The grounds have been suitably fenced in and laid out in a tasteful
manner.
The church consists of nave 48ft.by 26ft., sanctuary 17ft. by 16ft., vestry
14ft.by 11ft., and a porchway at entrance 8ft. by 8ft. The nave has a height in the
centre of 33ft. from the floor line to the apex of the ceiling, and is lighted by nine lancet
headed windows, which are glazed with tinted lead lights.
The sanctuary is placed in the east end of the building, and is octagonal in form, and separated from the nave by means of a wide and lofty Gothic-headed archway, which is suitably embellished with  hard moldings and carved bosses. This apartment is lighted by two lancet-headed windows, and one large rose window, cusped in the form of a quatrefoil.
All these windows are glazed in a very  effective scheme of colored glass decoration.  The vestry is placed on the right hand side of the sanctuary, with access from same as well as from the outside.
The construction of the building throughout is of the most substantial kind. Bluestone is used for all the walls, with brick and.cement dressings to all the doors and windows, and the whole is neatly tuckpointed.
The interior walls are plastered to represent rough cast work, and are suitably lined out and tinted.
The roof principals and ceiling lining are in clean dressed oregon pine, with bold molded cornice and frieze molds.
The whole of the woodwork inside is varnished, thereby preserving the natural grain of the woods employed. Ample provision has been made for both inlet and outlet ventilation.
The nave is furnished with a sufficiency of comfortable seats of neat construction. The sanctuary is railed off by a handsome line of ornamental wrought iron railing, surmounted with a suitable cedar handrail.
The altar is a handsome structure, happily conceived and faithfully carried out in detail to harmonise with the period of Gothic, in which the church is built. All other necessary furnishings have also been provided to make the church complete and ready for the opening day, which is fixed for tomorrow (Sunday).
The building was designed and supervised by Messrs. Keogh and Austen. As R.V.I.A.,
architects, of View Point, Bendigo, the contractors for the work being Messrs. Brett
and Gover of Bendigo. who have carried out their contract most faithfully.
*Please note: This article appeared in the newpaper as a single paragraph. I have chosen to include paragraphs for ease of reading. 
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Recent photo of St. Mary’s Church
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The foundation stone laid 16 February 1902
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 Plaque to commemorate 140 years 1902-2002