What is a Police Gazette?
Compiled to be distributed amongst the Police Force only, Police Gazettes
contain details and information that can not be found anywhere else. Produced at
regular intervals (usually once a week), it was a way of making information
available to all in the Police Force throughout the whole state.
What information can be found in a New South Wales Police Gazette?
The information contained in the Police Gazettes does vary a little from
year to year, but overall you will find details of any changes within the police
force which are all listed (promotions, demotions, resignations, dismissals,
retirements, deaths etc), information is also given on housebreak-ins,
robberies, arson, murders, lost horses and cattle, deserters, escaped prisoners,
missing friends, and reports on those released. Notices from interstate police
gazettes are sometimes included.
How can this help me?
Anyone researching their family will have a 'lost' family member or two! You
may well find them listed here, being on either side of the law. Or maybe they
were a Policeman who transferred to another department or division, or someone
that was a victim of a crime. You can find the physical details on persons
listed here, missing, wanted or released, which helps to paint a picture of them
(name, aliases used, age, height, colour hair, colour eyes, distinguishing
features, even colour clothing worn).
Far from being just a unique and extremely fascinating resource for local,
family and social historians - they are useful for anyone with an interest in
New South Wales in the 1880s.
Example entries taken from the 8 February 1888 issue: [please note the
entries below are only a few extracted from the whole column]
George Splatt, charged with assaulting Florence Carmichael and robbing her of
a purse containing 19s., has been arrested by Senior-constable Grice, Sydney
Police. Committed for trial at Quarter Sessions.
James M'Fadden, charged on warrant with wilfully and maliciously setting fire
to a grass paddock at Wilga, the property of Albert Rothery, Esq., has been
arrested by Constable Stirton, Nyngan Police. Committed for trial at Bourke
George Collins, summoned for embezzling the sum of 5s, the property of his
employer, Jenkin Williams, has been committed for trial at Maitland Sessions.
Frederick Hall, alias Dryer, alias Masher Fred, charged with breaking and
entering the Albert Park Railway Station, Melbourne, and stealing the sum of
£64 4s 3 d., the property of the Victoria Railway Department, has been
arrested in Sydney by Detectives O'Donnell and Rochaix. Remanded to Victoria.
This CD contains all 52 weekly issues that were produced for the year 1888, and is truly a fascinating read for learning about the social history of the time, even if you don't have family there.