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Particulars of the Murder of Constable Tomkins
The Bushranger Cummerford having given information that
One Dugnall had murdered Six Bushrangers between Port Phillip
and Portland bay. The Govr. in Chief Sir Rd. Bourke sent Cummerford
to P. P. to point out where this act had been perpetrated, in
Accordance with these Orders Wm. Lonsdale Esqre P. M. here
sent Cummerford under charge of A Sergeant One Soldier
and Two Consables in the proposed direction, Cummerford
did guide this Party to where he himself A shoemaker
(name unknown) and Dugnall, had as he stated, Murdered
in Cold Blood & while sleeping, six human beings. The
Party declare that they found from 1 to two Bushels of
human bones Calcined - some human Teeth
and also hair was found unburnt and a quantity of
Shoenails and Buttons from the Clothes of the murdered Men
This was about 210 Miles from Melbourne.
On the way home they fell in with and brought the bone
of a Horses head said to be Mr Ebden's, which was
Shot by Dugnall & Cummerford for food on their way
home. One Constable & the Soldier turned back for
some tea left behind & the Sergeant, Tomkins & Prisoner
came homewards they stopped to cook before these
men returned & the Sergeant gave his musket to
Tomkins while he made a fire. Tomkins it does
appear culpably left the Firearms & the Prisoner
siezed Musket & Shot Tomkins & that he died
within 3 Hours. The Ball it appears entered his
left side & came out at the right breast, and cut
diagonally across the [Note: right] forearm to the bone
This cool blooded wretch plundered the Pack horse
and [Note: finally] escaped [Note: though] pursued by the Sergeant for some time
This took place on the Saturday the 30th Dec on Jany 1 he
was taken by 3 of Mr W. Wedge's men after having
plundered [...] of a Double-barrelled
gun he wished to get a Horse & threatened
the lives of several of the Principal Graziers
of this district he was taken while trying to get [Note: a Horse]
Cummerford is a light well made Youth
about 19 he has rather a prepossessing look
and very Mild Voice, small fine neck,
remarkably large upper Head, the lower
part is very small and the Chin recedes
towards the neck so as to make a very strange
appearance when looked closely into
We trust that the Three [Note: men] who
prevented the Atrocities meditated by this
Brutal Wretch will Receive their Free &
Unconditional Pardons. For we in common
with many of our fellow Colonists hold that
Incentive is, in such Cases the best Preventative.
We have omitted much for want of Space.
Errata in No. 1 For Cummerfield Read Cummerford
Those of the Subscribers to the above
who took Credit when they favoured this
Establishment with their Support are most
respectfully informed, that it is usual to pay up
all Arrears at the beginning of a
New Year. J. P. Fawkner
8 Jany. 38.
On Thursday the 4th instant the Jemima returned
to Port having lost an Anchor. She reports
the Blossom and Tasmanian Lass as lying
wind bound at the Heads. Also the Mary,
Robson, at Williams Town. Owing to the Strong
Southerly gales, The Jemima having borrowed
an Anchor Sailed again for Launceston.
This Morning the Cutter Industry from Hobart Town
On Sunday the 7th arrived the Tamar, Bowden
from Launceston. Cargo 600 Sheep = Hughson.
She reports the Henry as about to Sail
for this Port when she left having
commenced taking in her Sheep.
by this arrival came a Hobart Town Paper Date Jany. 2 [Note: 1838].
The Mail per Enterprize Schooner
will close at Noon on Tuesday first.
A wretch named Mooney has been
committed for attempting to Murder his wife
she lies in a dangerous state.