Mackay, Charles Douglas

Personal Details

SurnameMackay
First nameCharles
Middle nameDouglas
Date of death17/10/1871
Age at death29 years

Details

[Ref:1871/001114]

Cemetery Record

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CemeteryBowen Downs
LocationBowen Downs
AddressBowen Downs, Muttaburra
OccupationOverseer
Comment

Murdered by aborigines

Some apprehensions are felt as to the safety of Mr. Herbert C. Davis (brother of Mr. Sydney Beavan Davis, of Rockhampton), who left Bowen Downs Station about April last, and has not since been heard of. Mr. Murray, Chief Inspector of Police, has sent his brother, who was in charge of a detachment of Native Troopers on the Belyando, out to Bowen Downs and the stations on the Thompson Hirer, to make inquiries respecting the missing gentleman, in order if possible to uncertain his whereabouts. Mr. S. R. Davis is in possession of information that his brother deposited money in the bank at Fort Bourke, in December last, and judges from that circumstance, that his brother at that time contemplated travelling south, and is now probably somewhere in the back districts of New South Wales or South Australia. Another circumstance favourable to this supposition, is that lately letters from Sydney, addressed to Mr. Herbert Davis, have been forwarded to Rockhampton to the care of Mr. S. B. Davis. It is to be hoped, therefore, that no calamity has befallen the absent one. |
[Source: http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article51583341
Rockhampton Bulletin and Central Queensland Advertiser (Qld: 1861 – 1871) Tuesday 10 October 1871 Page 2 of 4]

A Variety of reports have been current as to the fate of Mr. Herbert C Davis, brother of Mr. Sydney Beavan Davis, of Rockhampton, who left Bowen Downs station about April last. The Bulletin says that “Mr. Murray, Chief Inspector of Police, has sent his brother, who was in charge of a detachment of Native Troopers on the Belyando, out to Bowen Downs and the stations on the Thomson River, to make inquiries respecting the missing gentle man, in order if possible to ascertain his whereabouts. Mr. S B Davis is in possession of information that his brother deposited money in the bank at Fort Bourke, in December last, and judges from that circumstance that he at that time contemplated travelling South, and is now probably somewhere in the back districts of New South Wales or South Australia. Another circumstance favourable to this supposition is that lately letters from Sydney, addressed to Mr. Herbert Davis, have been forwarded to Rockhampton to the care of Mr. S B Davis. It is to be hoped, therefore, that no calamity has befallen the absent one. “The following paragraph on this subject, in the Ravenswood Miner, has since received confirmation:-“Sub inspector Fitzgerald brings word of the murder of Mr. Sidney Davis’ brother and a stockman on Bowen Downs station. The murderers were led by a boy well known in the neighborhood by the name of ‘Alligator’. A stockman, stationed some distance from the scene of the butchery, was also ‘stuck up’ by the same party, but he succeeded in making a gallant and successful resistance, leaving the dreaded ‘Alligator’ fortunately amongst the slain.” On inquiry at the office of the Commissioner of Police, we learn that there is every reason to believe that the report of Mr. Davis having been murdered is correct Mr. Armstrong the Police Magistrate at Blackall, wrote on September 21 to Clermont that Mr. Moorehead, M.L. A, had reported to him that Mr. Davis and his black boy had been murdered by the aborigines. No authentic account of the details of the tragedy, however, have as yet come to hand.
[Source: http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article1333436 The Brisbane Courier (Qld.: 1864 – 1933) Wednesday 18 October 1871 Page 2 of 4]

The inland mail has brought further intelligence in confirmation of the reported death of Mr. Herbert Davis. Writing from Bowen Downs, Thompson River, under date 29th September, Mr. Alfred C. Thomas, communicates the following to Mr. S. B. Davis, of this town:-“Your brother, Mr. H. C. Davis, who used to be here, left this station three or four months ago with two black-boys, to go across the desert to the Belyando. Some lately caught black-boys give some painful rumour about him, and the enclosed letter found in a blacks’ camp rushed lately by Mr. Kerr, would appear to give some consistency to the reports. The letter is known to have been written by your brother, to his mother, and he is supposed to have had it with him when he went away. The Native Police are coming up, and when we have more time a search will be made at the spot indicated by the black-boy some distance from here. The blacks have been very troublesome here lately, and a Chinese shepherd was killed last week at Jericho.” We may add that Mr. Sydney Davis identifies the letter as being in his brother’s handwriting. Saturday week’s Peak Downs Telegram contributes the following towards clearing up the mystery. (We may premise that the Mr. Armstrong spoken of is the Sub-inspector of Police stationed at Blackall):- “A report reached us a few weeks ago, that Mr. Herbert Davis, a brother of Mr. Sydney B. Davis, who for some time represented this constituency in Parliament, had been killed by the blacks. As it was only a report, which we were unable to substantiate, we called no attention to it at the time, but information has now come to hand that leaves no reasonable doubt as to its truth. Authentic intelligence has been received from Mr. Armstrong, of Blackall, to the effect that Mr. Davis was for some time missing, and that it has now been discovered by the Native Police that he and his black-boy have been murdered by the blacks between that township and Bowen Downs, livery one who knew Mr. Davis will regret to hear of his melancholy death.-“The Ravenswood Miner contribute the following additional information:-“Sub inspector Fitzgerald brings word of the murder of Mr. Sydney Davis’ brother and a stockman on Bowen Downs Station. The murderers were by a boy well-known in the neighbourhood by the name of the “Alligator.” A stockman stationed some distance from the scene of the butchery was also ‘stuck up’ by the same party, but he succeeded in making a gallant and successful resistance, leaving the dreaded “Alligator” amongst the slain.”
[Source:http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article51583430
Rockhampton Bulletin and Central Queensland Advertiser (Qld.: 1861 – 1871) Saturday 21 October 1871 page 4 of 6]

Editor’s Note:
• There is no record of a Herbert Charles Davis dying in Queensland in 1871. There is a Herbert Davis age 18 years, born in England, who died in 1879 [Qld. Ref: 1879/C316].
• Sydney Beven Davis, son of John Davis and Harriot Dowrick , died in 1884 [Qld. Ref: 1884/C4818]