|INSIDE THIS ISSUE
L-R.—Seated Secretary Owen Bevan APM, President Bill Prior, Vice President Kevin Beare OAM,
Treasurer Tony Woodcock PEM
Standing– Committee Bob Bosence, Charlie Tredrea, Kate Woodcock BEd, Di Lugg,
Kevin Johnson, Barry Blundell
David Richardson born 22/10/1936—passed away 3/6/2011
David joined SAPOL 18th June 1956 as a Junior Constable and retired 22 January 1991 at the rank of Sergeant. He served at Woodville, Mt Gambier, Beachport, Speed Detection , Traffic Task Force Traffic Escort,
Workshops and the Academy. As a member of our Society, he was a volunteer who was involved in the restoration of the FJ Holden before he moved to the country. He was awarded the National Medal and Clasp for service.
THE FLOOD IN THE ARCHIVES ROOM
(By Geoff Rawson)
On Wednesday the 4th January 2012, I attended at the Barracks with the intention of checking the mail, telephone messages and emails. I was intending to be about an hour at the most as we were supposed to be having a break over Christmas.
Imagine my shock when I opened the door to the entrance foyer to our meeting room and found myself standing in an inch of water on the floor. “That’s not supposed to be there” I thought. I could hear the sound of water running and on entering the archives area where the new compactus had been installed, I was appalled at the sight of water gushing from the ceiling in many places all over our records. The floor was also covered in about an inch of water. Running up the stairs I entered the upstairs toilet to see an old galvanised pipe had corroded away from a tap and the water was running freely, running through cracks in the floor to the ceiling below. After shutting off the water and in a state of panic, I called for emergency plumbing and help from the cleaners, all three arriving with buckets and mops. It took an hour just to get rid of the worst of the water.
Di Lugg, Bob Ward Helen Ward and Kate Woodcock after a long day of deluge, salvaging as much of the damaged material as possible
I rang volunteers for help and thankfully, Helen and Bob Ward, Kate Woodcock and Di Lugg came to my assistance and we worked until 3.00pm, removing wet boxes and removing the contents to new boxes. The lids of these boxes had another inch of water on top so as each was removed, more was added to the floor. We used every table available and all the wet material was placed out to dry as much as possible.
The plumber could not repair the pipe as it was upstairs on the outside and returned on the Thursday with another plumber to remove the old and replace with copper. Di Lugg returned on Thursday with Bob Boscence, Charlie Tredrea and Kate and Tony Woodcock. More boxes were delivered and we were able to re-box much of the archive material that was not wet.
Helen and Bob Ward, Geoff Rawson, Di Lugg at the end of the first day.
Amazingly, most of the boxes that were saturated protected the contents which were dry inside, apart from those where the bottoms of the boxes had been very wet. It proved the value of boxing up material to preserve. Other materials were not so lucky, with many books saturated and possibly beyond saving. Physical Assets came to our assistance and were on the scene from Wednesday onwards and damage to the building is still being assessed.
My gratitude to those willing volunteers, who came to my assistance and worked so hard on those 2 days. No doubt the work will continue for some time to come.
The shipwreck of the
Brigantine Maria 1840.
(The South Australian Advertiser (Adelaide, SA : 1858-1889), Monday 12 September 1870, page 4, 5)
Continued from last issue.
There is much that is both interesting and suggestive in these instructions. Major O'Halloran, it will be seen, had absolute power of life or death, within certain limits. It is easy now to say that the native murderers were subjects of the Queen, and were entitled by the laws of the realm to trial by Jury ; but we have to consider all the circumstances of the case—in fact, to put ourselves in the position of Colonel Gawler, in order to appreciate the difficulties which surrounded him. A series of horrible murders had been committed, and the murderers must be punished in order for the safety of subsequent settlers or travellers. It might have been more formal to have caught the murderers and tried them in the usual way; but as an example to the tribes this would have been much less effective —even if a conviction could have been obtained—than the course actually adopted. Nothing was to be done without the most careful deliberation, and as far as possible the solemnity of judicial forms was to be adopted. Even the Encounter Bay natives were to be called upon to say whether the blacks were guilty or not guilty.
How the Major performed his work is fully set forth in his report to His Excellency. The story reads with all the romantic interest of a dangerous but successful adventure. About 12 o'clock on Sunday morning, August 22, a number of natives were discovered along the coast, far ahead, running to make their escape.
Pursuit was instantly given, but owing to the heavy nature of the sand it was some time before the expedition neared them. The natives then took to the heavy sand hills; but the Major was not to be out witted, so he threw out skirmishers from the coast to the Lake and outflanked the enemy, and by the evening, without injury to any one, 13 men, 2 lads, and about 50 women and children were captured. Some took to the Lake, but they were followed on horseback and brought back. The Major says—" Upon the persons of almost every man and woman, and in almost every wurley we examined (and they were numerous) we found various articles of European clothing belonging to males and females as well as children, and many of them stained with blood ; an excellent silver watch also, and four tea and one silver salt spoons with the initials J. E. Y." This convinced the Major that those apprehended were actual participators in the bloody crimes that had been committed. The male prisoners were carefully guarded during the night, the women and children having been set at liberty; but the most of the children remained with the men.
The following morning the country was scoured, and a number of ferocious blacks were seen wearing articles of European clothing. A great many articles of women's clothing covered with blood were again found in the wurleys. Two of the natives who were said to be amongst the murderers, and who could not be captured, were fired at —the only time the
party used their arms—and both of them were wounded, and subsequently captured by Inspector Tolmer, who swam after them.
Here we get a glimpse of the sight which met the expedition :—" At another spot in this neighbourhood, where there are several native huts together, we found newspapers, receipted bills made out in the name of Captain Smith, the mail letters from Adelaide opened and torn, the leaves of a Bible and another book, with part of the log of the brigantine Maria.
This clearly proves that the crew and passengers of the above vessel are the unhappy sufferers, and that they must have come on shore very deliberately, and were making their way to Adelaide when murdered. It appears strange, however, that they had no weapons of defence with them." It is difficult at this distance of time, to understand how the members of the expedition would feel when these tokens of the bloody death of their fellow-countrymen were met with ; and it is creditable both to Major O'Halloran and his party that they were able to keep their natural feelings of indignation in check.
It would hardly have been a matter of wonder if under the influence of excited feeling, they had proceeded to wreak vengeance on the whole tribe. Happily, however, they acted with coolness and deliberation, and not from mere passion. In addition to the murder of the crew and passengers of the Maria, two sailors from a whaling vessel had also fallen under the brutal vengeance of the blacks, and their murderers were discovered.
The record of the examination of the murderers is quite dramatic. All the available evidence was produced. The tribe themselves pointed out the murderers, and handed them over to justice.
The examination having been finished, the Major, addressing the native interpreter, said—" Now, Bob, tell these men (the rest of the prisoners) that I will not hurt them ; that they must remain quiet to-night, for I want them to see me hang these two. Bob, tell them that if a white man kills a black man the great Governor will hang the white man, and therefore for the future they must always be kind to the white men ; and, Bob, if any more white men are shipwrecked here, and if the black men will take them to Encounter Bay, the white men will reward the good black men. Bob, tell them I shot two black men to-day for running away; that I sent for them by the boat, but that they had got off to the other side ; and tell them that we shot them as far as that boat is from us, and that they will surely die." Then the Major fired two shots along the water to show how far off he could kill them.
And now we ask our readers to imagine the scene that followed. Here was no Judge or Jury, no reference to common or statute law—for the circumstances would not allow of these ; but never did a Jury return a verdict, or Judge pronounce a sentence, under more solemn and imposing circumstances ; and perhaps we may say never was a more just verdict returned or more just sentence pronounced. It is quite true that the whole affair is more like a Court Martial than a civil trial, but it was admirably adapted to the occasion. Towards the members of the expedition Major O'Halloran turned and said:—
" Gentlemen—By virtue of the authority vested in me by His Excellency, I declare in the presence of Almighty God, and of those assembled around me, that I believe these two men who have been given over to us by their own tribe to be guilty of murder, and to be fully deserving of death ; this I declare according to my conscience, so help me God.
" Captain Nixon, I now request of you likewise your deliberate opinion whether (you conceive these men are guilty and deserving of death.
" Captain Nixon—I do, so help me God.
" Mr. Bonney, yours—I do, so help me God.
" Mr. Pullen, yours—I do, so help me God.
" Mr. Tolmer, yours—I do, so help me God."
Major O'Halloran —"Encounter Bay Bob, do you think these men have killed the white men, and ought to die-?"
"Do you, Charley?" Charley—"Yea."
"Do you, Peter ?" Peter—" Yes."
Then came the solemn sentence, pronounced as follows :—" I now by virtue of the authority I have from the Governor, whose representative I now am, pronounce the sentence of Death upon these two men—That they be hanged by the neck to-morrow at the grave of our unfortunate countrymen ; and may God, in His mercy, have mercy on their souls!"
This record of the grave transaction is - signed by Major O'Halloran, Captain Nixon, and Messrs. Pullen, Bonney, and Tolmer, The trial and sentence might not have all the weight and authority of a trial in a Court of Law, but though a rule, it appears to have been a faithful administration of justice, the happy effect of which has been felt till this day, for such was the terror struck into the hearts of the natives along the Coorong and on the Murray that they have, as a rule, carefully abstained from molesting the white population—either settlers or travellers—ever since.
It only remains that we should make one more extract from the old journal:—
"Yesterday morning, Tuesday, August 25, I proceeded with my entire party (except a small guard left to protect the camp), the prisoners, and murderers back about 15 miles to the spot on the sea coast where our unfortunate countrymen lie buried, and where they were likewise murdered, and there, at two minutes past 3 o'clock p.m., these two men were executed by hanging immediately over the grave. They died almost instantly, and both evinced extreme nerve and courage to the last, especially the man who was given over to us by his tribe, and who had the most ferocious and demon-like countenance I ever beheld.
After the execution I released the prisoners, and notified that such was the way the whites punished those who committed murders, and that the present punishment was a merciful one, considering the numerous murders they had committed. I likewise warned them not to touch the bodies, and desired them ever to remember the day, and to bring their relatives and children to the spot, that they might all see how the white man punished those who murdered any of his tribe." ▄
Next Issue Commissioner Tolmer.
POLICE HISTORICAL SOCIETY XMAS PARTY
P0LICE CLUB—SATURDAY 4TH DECEMBER 2011
Approximately 80 members attended the Police Club for the 2011 Xmas Party at the Police Club with our Patron Commissioner Mal Hyde AO, APM and his wife Marcia and our Vice Patron Deputy Commissioner Gary Burns BM, APM and his wife Denise.
Our Secretary Owen Bevan APM was the MC for the evening and President Bill Prior welcomed guests.
The food as usual was excellent, thanks to Heather and Greg, with many options on the menu to chose from.
There were few formalities, with the highlight of the evening, the door prize, the raffle and the table prizes. Bill thanked the organisers of the event, Kate Woodcock, Audrey Wallace and Helen Ward for their hard work and effort.
Commissioner Hyde addressed the group providing some insight into the future of SAPOL and wishing all a happy and safe Christmas.
CONGRATULATIONS TO MEMBER HEATHER EVERINGHAM WHO RECEIVED A CERTIFICATE OF APPRECIATION FROM HOLGER KRUSE AT BANROCK STATION FOR HER RESEARCH AND PUBLICATION OF ARTICLES CONTRIBUTING TO PUBLIC AWARENESS OF POLICE HISTORY IN THE RIVERLAND.
RIDE LIKE CRAZY—MORNING TEA
On Thursday the 16th February 2012, the Commissioner Mal Hyde AO, APM, held a morning tea and presentation ceremony for the sponsors of the Ride Like Crazy charity which raised around $160,000 for medical research.
PHS Volunteers catered for the event which was a great success again with a wonderful spread of sandwiches, cakes and scones beautifully arranged on a number of tables, serving cold drinks and tea and coffee. A lot of preparation goes into these events and the volunteers are to be congratulated on their hard work both preparing food and re-arranging the hall for the event. A special mention to Kate Woodcock for organising the catering.
Our volunteers for the “Ride Like Crazy” morning tea.
Back Row L-R
Bob Bosence, Bob Ward, Ann Prior, Max Griffiths, Helen Ward, Owen Bevan, Bill Prior, Geoff Rawson, Tony Woodcock
Front Row L-R
Dawn Cleaver, Audrey Wallace, Kate Woodcock, Audrey Walker, Jan Coventry, Di Lugg, Bethany Boettcher
Colin CURTIS, Rob McCLORY,
We Welcome you …….
March Friday 2nd —Visit to new SAPOL Headquarters, Angas Street Adelaide
(April0 Friday 30th March 2012—Kevin Beare-”History of SAPOL drug investigations”
PLEASE NOTE THIS FRIDAY REPLACES THE 7TH APRIL (EASTER).
May Friday 4th —Nigel Hunt (author “The First Police Union” ) The history of the SA Police Association of SA.
June Friday 1st – Visit to the New Police Academy
NB (May be moved to a day visit on the Saturday or Sunday)
THE DEDICATION OF THE GRAVE OF
WALTER JOHN WISSELL
Constable Walter John Wissell
On Wednesday the 7th December 2011 at 11.00am at the West Terrace Cemetery the SA Police Association of SA held a service dedicating the formerly unmarked grave of Constable Walter John Wissell. The day was significant in that it commemorated the 100th anniversary of the Police Association on that day. The Blessing was conducted by Senior Police Chaplain Dianna Bartlett and the Last Post and Reveille was played by SC Paul West of the Police Band. Mark Carroll and Commissioner Mal Hyde laid wreaths and unveiled the plaque on the grave.
Wissell died of pneumonia and heart failure after he suffered a serious injury in the arrest of a drunken man at Kadina. He had approached William Dibballs, a 39-year-old labourer whose behaviour in Graves St had become somewhat raucous on a Saturday evening in February, 1919.
plaque unveiled on grave
President Mark Carroll addressing the group and
Senior Chaplain Dianna Bartlett in background.
The patient police officer reasoned with Dibballs, whom he asked to behave and head for home. But the troublemaker, rather than co-operate, struck Wissell with a forceful punch to the face. Each man then struggled to overpower the other, until Wissell was able to bring Dibballs under control and arrest him.
In the Kadina Court on the following Monday, after confinement to a police cell, Dibballs pleaded guilty to charges of drunkenness and assault. He was fined five shillings and ₤5 for the offences respectively, as well as costs of ₤3.12.6 to cover, in part, damage to Wissell’s uniform. Wissell became gravely ill with pneumonia soon after the attack. Although he received frequent medical treatment, the husband and father of four died in Kadina.
Based in Adelaide after he joined SAPOL in 1910, Wissell became the fourth secretary of the Police Association in 1917. Leading the then six-year-old union, he began to feature prominently in a historic pay dispute with the government in 1918.
Then commissioner Thomas Edwards, however, transferred Wissell to Wallaroo. Many police asserted – and continue to assert – that Edwards’ true intent was to separate him from his association role. The blunt assessment of current-day President Mark Carroll is that Wissell “lost his life because of his union affiliation”.
“In the early years of the Association, which formed in 1911, he was at the forefront with a lot of other outrageous men,” he told the Police Journal last year. The association named its prize for academic achievement the Walter J. Wissell Award. One of its representatives presents the award to the dux of each graduating recruit course from Fort Largs.
In death, Wissell became, and remains, one of the association’s greatest icons.
OPENING OF THE NEW POLICE ACADEMY
WEDNESDAY 8/2/2012 ( by Geoff Rawson)
The official opening of the new Academy included the 1st graduation parade of Course 5 and commenced with the Police Band, Mounted Operations, Course 5 and two other courses marching onto the beautifully grassed parade ground and being presented with their certificates of authority, and presentation of prizes. (In the background of the photo below is the accommodation block for trainees, with graduating course 5 in the centre)
We were welcomed by Chief Superintendent Michael Cornish the O.C of the Academy.
This is the first time an Academy has been purpose built with the future in mind where trainees will have access to a modern facility suited to current and future policing.
The Senior Police Chaplain Dianna Bartlett gave a blessing. After the ceremony morning tea was served in the dining room.
Four members of the Mounted Operations unit.
The original flag from the old Academy was ceremonially raised in the new Academy as part of the ceremony. The Commissioner Mr Mal Hyde AO, APM, the Hon Jay Weatherill MP, Premier of SA and the Hon Jennifer Rankine MP, Minister for Police all made speeches and unveiled a plaque.
It is anticipated that we will be visiting the new Academy in June and we will provide a feature article about the facility in a future issue.
The dismissal and traditional throwing of caps of course 5
Sunday 22/1/12—Museum visit by the PT Cruiser Car Club.
Volunteers Di Lugg, Bethany Boetcher, Geoff Rawson, Kevin Beare, Kevin Johnson, Jan Coventry and Max Griffiths entertained a lively group from the PT Cruiser Car Club. After devouring the Devonshire Tea they enjoyed the Mounted area, with close up of Police Horse Vulcan, (thanks to the MOU staff), vehicle gallery and the four museum galleries.
POWER RALLY MILANG.
(Yesterday’s Power– The Milang Vintage Machinery Club)
On Sunday the 29th January 2012, Dennis Irrgang, Kevin Johnson, Ben Jansen, Phil Butterworth, Di Lugg, Rosco Edwards and Ernie McLeod were joined by Bruce Scotland from Goolwa for the Power Rally at Milang.
Once again our BSA won this trophy from 9 other competitors for the best unrestored motorcycle in the show. It is the fourth year in a row that we have won the award. This is an example of some of the work done in the garage to keep our vehicles in first class condition.
With bookings already flooding in, we will be very busy with Museum tours this year and would love
additional tour guides or assistants to join in where possible. On the job training is lots of fun.
Thursday group volunteers are welcome. We are looking for a research assistant for Allan Peters, photographic section assistants, with our new high speed scanner we will need a volunteer to become involved in using this equipment, and there is plenty of work in the archives area. Please call in and have a coffee or tea if you have a spare day and you will find the experience most rewarding.
The following volunteers kindly gave their time to attend the following functions ;- Saturday
19/11/2011 Twilight Xmas pageant at Port Adelaide, Sunday 20/11/11 Glenelg Xmas Pageant and Edwardstown School Fete, Saturday 26/11/11 Onkaparinga Xmas Pageant (at Christies Beach) and the Norwood Xmas Pageant.
Kevin Johnson, Max Griffiths, Geoff Rawson, Kevin Beare, Ernie McLeod, Dennis Irrgang, Di Lugg, Rosco Edwards , Jan Coventry and Peter Laurence.
Thanks to all those involved.
SUNDAY 15th January 2012—Ride Like Crazy.
Ernie McLeod, Di Lugg and Max Griffiths attended the charity event “Ride Like Crazy” - Right Max Griffiths with the Chrysler and below Ernie Mcleod can’t waste a photo opportunity.
SANTOS TOUR DOWN UNDER 2012.
From Sunday the 15th January to Sunday the 22nd the following volunteers were involved in the Tour Down Under using the FJ Holden or the Chrysler Royal.—Kevin Johnson, Dennis Irrgang, Bill Prior, Ernie Mcleod, Max Griffiths, John White, Bob Bosence and Kevin Beare. All of these events don’t just involve driving around in our historic vehicles, as there is a fair amount of preparation including cleaning, polishing and ensure the vehicles are in a roadworthy condition. Well done to you all.
Kevin Johnson and President Bill Prior at the Torrens Parade Ground
waiting to start the Lobethal to Stirling leg.
The “HUE & CRY” is Published by the
South Australian Police Historical Society Inc.,
Thebarton Police Barracks
C/- G.P.O. Box 1539
e-mail : firstname.lastname@example.org
If you have any articles you believe would be of interest please forward them to the
Editors, preferably in digital format using the above address.
Editors:- Geoff Rawson and Charlie Tredrea.
SOUTH AUSTRALIAN POLICE HISTORICAL SOCIETY
2012 ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
It is with much pleasure I present the 35th Annual Presidents Report and my second Annual Report as President of the South Australian Police Historical Society Inc. This past year has been a period where we have been consolidating our records, with significant emphasis on re-filing much of our archive collection, while at the same time moving towards a total transfer of our records to the nationally approved Mosaic System. Mosaic is a computer program specifically designed for the recording of all Museum records.
We have now recorded a large section of our photographic and uniform collections on the new data base. This will eventually result in a system which provides us with a much greater ability to search for specific articles or photographs when we receive requests or members are conducting research.
These two separate but intrinsically linked projects have required significant work and dedication by many volunteers. Special thanks and acknowledgement to Tony Kaukas who wrote the successful submissions for the following grants:-
• Compactus $10,512:70,
• Air-conditioning of Museum $15,070:00
• Scanning/Printer $ 8,402.90
However, obtaining the required funding was perhaps one of the easiest parts of the projects. Re-arranging the archive collection is proving to be a mammoth task. Thanks in particular to Barry Blundell and Di Lugg who manage this project. They were assisted throughout the year by many volunteers and I also thank them for their dedication.
Charlie Tredrea and Bob Boscence have been managing the transfer to the Mosaic Program. Again, this has not been an easy task, but we are now in a position to be able to transfer our records to Mosaic.
Just prior to our last Annual General Meeting I announced that we were to produce a coloured version of the 'Hue and Cry' in partnership with the Police Credit Union. From the feed-back I have received, it would appear that the new coloured version has been enthusiastically received by our membership. I thank the Credit Union for their support throughout the year and look forward to many more years of working together to continue producing such an informative newsletter. Thanks also to Geoff Rawson and Charlie Tredrea who spend many hours editing and producing the Hue and Cry.
On a personal level, I retired from full-time paid employment in March 2011 and although I have been absent while travelling interstate and overseas on occasions, I have been able to dedicate much more time to my role of President of the Historical Society. This has enabled me to gain an even greater appreciation of the very hard work and dedication of the many volunteers who make the Society such a great organisation.
Thank you to the many volunteers who have made a contribution to our Society throughout this past year.
Members of the Executive Committee have continued to work tirelessly to ensure the Society is managed in a competent and professional manner.
Throughout this year the Executive has been involved in many significant discussions and decisions. Some of the most significant include:
The Executive Committee has been involved in many discussions regarding developments at the new Academy. These have ranged from researching articles relating to the various Commandants, assisting with the development of speech notes for the laying of foundation stones and final graduation parade at the old Academy, to assisting the SAPOL Media officer research a special production of SAPOL's Blue Print Magazine which is dedicated to the history of police involvement with the Fort Largs complex.
I reported on this matter in my initial Annual General Meeting Report. There has been no change to the status of this matter.
SAPOL Volunteer Program
I reported on this matter in my initial Annual General Meeting Report. There has been no change to the status of this matter.
Having said that, it is interesting to note that in the past 12 months, our volunteers have contributed 8,890 hours to the work of the Society. Much of this work has been to assist SAPOL. Thank you very much to all the dedicated volunteers for your excellent contribution.
Excess SAPOL equipment
As mentioned in my last Annual General Meeting Report, the Society was offered a significant amount of equipment and historical documentation as a result of the closure of the 'old' Fort Largs Academy and the Flinders Street Headquarters buildings. We have now received a wide range of memorabilia in addition to a large collection of photographs and furniture.
The Society thanks SAPOL and the many officers who supplied us with the above items.
I reported in my last Report to the Annual General Meeting that notification had been received, indicating that our Vehicle Museum, would be demolished to make way for the construction of a new Road Safety School.
I am pleased to report that as a result of my approach to the Commissioner and further discussions with the Project Manager, advice has now been received that the Vehicle Museum will be retained. In fact, I am confident that the garage building will be at least partially restored as part of the project to beautify the precinct immediately surrounding the Road safety School development.
The 2011 Foundation Day celebrations were conducted at the site of the original Adelaide Gaol, at the rear of Government House. Max Slee, a foundation member of our Society, conducted considerable research and was able to pin-point the exact location of the Gaol. The event was hosted by the Governor and we thank His Excellency, the Commissioner and the staff of the Corporate Communications' Branch within SAPOL for their support with this celebration.
One unfortunate aspect of this celebration was that the ceremony was only open to 'invited guests' and this meant that some members who had regularly attended previous Foundation Day events were unable to attend. I apologise to those members, but as explained, the limitations were imposed by Government House Staff and were beyond the control of the Society Executive.
National Police Remembrance Day
On 29th September each year we remember those police officers who have lost their lives in the execution of their duty. At this year's event, conducted in the Auditorium at the 'old' Academy, I was privileged to give an address outlining the circumstances surrounding the death of Corporal Henry Kemp Brown NIXON, who died as a result of injuries received during a scuffle with a prisoner in 1861.
This was the first such address by the Historical Society at National Police Remembrance Day and received many positive comments from those attending. It is hoped this address will feature in all future Remembrance Day services.
Our monthly meetings continue to be an important aspect of our Society. This year we have been most fortunate to have had former President John White launch two impressive publications detailing the history of our uniforms and the development of transport within SAPOL. Retired Senior Sergeant Gerry Feltus spoke to us about the launch of his book entitled “The Unknown Man,” which detailed the history of an unidentified body that was found on Somerton Beach in 1949.
We were also fortunate to have been addressed by Deputy Commissioner Garry Burns, who is the Senior Executive with responsibility for the Police Historical Society. Other very informative addresses were delivered by (Retired) Chief Inspector Peter (Spoggy) Graham, in relation to his role as commentator for the various National and International Swimming Events, Superintendent Anthony Fioravanti, in relation to his role following the Christchurch earthquakes, Senior Constable Neil Percy on the Police Band visit to Basel, Switzerland in 2010 and Chief Superintendent Fred Trueman on the history of Police Health.
I thank Secretary, Owen Bevan, who arranges the speaker program.
Thanks to Kate Woodcock, these meetings have continued throughout the past year. They are informal, but provide the volunteers with an opportunity to contribute in a meaningful way to the progress of our Society. These meetings act as a forum in which the Executive Committee can seek input to issues under consideration or can quickly convey decisions of the Executive Committee to our volunteers.
I would also like to formally acknowledge the financial support provided to the Historical Society by SAPOL. Thanks to the valued support of our SAPOL representative, Chief Inspector Guy Buckley and with approval from Deputy Commissioner Garry Burns, our budget was increased to $5,000:00 for this year.
SAPOL also provides the bulk of our computer equipment. This allows a number of volunteers to perform data-entry and other functions, particularly on Thursdays. Again, we say thank you to SAPOL for this support.
During the past year the Executive Committee approved several improvements to the computer systems within our Administration area and in particular the installation of a Broadband network. This has improved our access to the Internet. Our Web Administrator, Charlie Tredrea has also been closely monitoring the use of our web-site. In the past 12 months, over 4 million 'hits' have been recorded with June being the month when most access was recorded.
Wall of Remembrance
I reported last year that Vice-President Kevin Beare had been very active throughout the past year establishing a ‘Wall of Remembrance’ in the Dorothy Pyatt Gallery. The ‘Wall’ displays the names of the 61 South Australian Police Officers killed in the execution of their duty.
During this past year we were fortunate to obtain funding to install a 'touch-screen' monitor with the display. We are currently developing the program with the relevant information to use with the display. Our thanks to Kevin for his generous donation to make this possible and Charlie Tredrea for his work in setting up the system.
Many of you would have been familiar with the Chanel 9 Program, Postcards, and I am sure many of you were disappointed with the announcement to cease production of the program late last year.
However, as one of the final productions, the Postcards Team visited our Museum and on 21st August 2011 aired the program. We have received many positive comments in relation to that production. Postcards supplied us with a full copy of the production and we are able to use the video clip as a feature of our Museum tours.
At 31 December 2011 our membership totalled 296. This is a slight reduction from the 300 members recorded at the end of last financial year.
It is with particular sadness that we remember Joseph Rodriguez, Peter Wright, John Cook, David Richardson, Kevin Morgan (members) and Ginge Walker, Thomas Howie (former members) who passed away in the past 12 months.
Police Association 100th Anniversary
It was with pleasure that I represented the Historical Society at the Dinner to commemorate the 100th Anniversary of the Police Association of South Australia (PASA) on 7 December 2011. PASA was the first Police Union established is Australia and in conjunction with that celebration, launched a publication 'The First Police Union' authored by Nigel Hunt. Copies are available from the PASA office. The Historical Society assisted Nigel Hunt with significant parts of his research for this book.
There area number of challenges facing our Society in the next twelve months. Of particular note are:
• maintaining and increasing membership - particularly among serving officers;
• constantly up-dating and improving our web-site;
• transferring information to our new data-base (Mosaic)
• sourcing sufficient funds to maintain and repair our collection, with particular attention to our vehicle fleet
• preparing for SAPOL's 175th anniversary of its foundation in 2013.
In general terms our Society is in a sound financial position and has a solid membership base. With continued support from SAPOL, particularly in terms of financial assistance and the provision of our premises at the Thebarton Barracks, we can look forward to a successful future.
However, this may not happen automatically and it is incumbent upon every member to assist us reach our goals. This can be achieved in many ways, including prompt payment of membership fees, assisting as a volunteer whenever possible, attending our monthly meetings, submitting contributions for our Hue and Cry or making suggestions to the Executive Committee for improvements or changes to the way we operate.
I look forward to a very successful 2012.