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Tuesday, March 30, 2010


Sarah and John Thomas Mawbey
c. 1875
Shirley, the daughter of Garnet Mawbey, one of the boys who survived the Mawbey massacre at Breelong in July 1900, sent me this photo of his parents and her grandparents [and my great grandparents], Sarah and John Thomas Mawbey.
A huge thank you Shirley!

The Sydney Morning Herald, Friday 23 November 1900
John Thomas Mawbey, sworn, said he was a farmer living at Breelong, 36 miles east of Dubbo.
He was a married man and had nine children.
In July last, Miss Kerz and Miss Clark (his wife's sister) were living in his house.
Miss Kerz used to teach a school.
Near the house witness had his old house...
On the night of the murders he was sleeping at the old house.
In his new house he left his family.
His eldest son in the new house was 14 years old.
[After getting a message from his little boy, Bertie], he went direct to the new house.
There was a track and a creek to cross.
On the way, his boy called out, and running in that direction, he found his daughter Grace lying down and groaning.
He picked her up and took her into the house.
There was a cut right across her forehead.
He then went to help Miss Kerz who was lying on the other side of the track where his daughter had been. Miss Kerz was dead...
Witness then searched for his little daughter, Hilda, and found her in half an hour in the creek, 100 yards further on.
Hilda was between 11 and 12 years of age.
In the house, he found his wife and son Percy both lying on the floor.
 He thought they were dead.
Here was Miss Clark too.
She was in her bed injured.
The Sydney Morning Herald, Monday, 23 July 1900
The deposition of Sarah Mawbey are as follows: "My" - "My name is Sarah Mawbey, I believe I am dying.
I know I am badly hurt.
Jimmy Governor hit me with a tomahawk;
I also saw Jackey.
He had a tomahawk.
I only saw two men.
I could hear more outside.
I could hear all of them.