Genealogical Data

Police at Tumbarumbra

I have looked at the book of Danny Webster's and the only Police he has recorded at Tumbarumba in 1892 is a Constable John T HELY. He also states that there would have been at least two Police there at that time & the only other record is for a Senior Constable R DONALDSON in 1885.

The Tumbarumba Court House and Two Police residences were constructed during the early 1880's & all three buildings still stand. They are of brick construction. The Sergeants residence stands in Bridge Street & used to house the Police Station. There is also a set of stables behind the building with a feed loft, an out house (dunny) and a well. The house has four bedrooms & it appears that the kitchen was separate.

The court house is typical of the architecture of that time, a single story building that appears to be a two story building. It has a clerks office on one side & a Magistrates room on the other. It is about 100 metres east of the Sergeants Residence & still in Bridge Street.

The Lock-up keepers residence is behinfd the Court House to the North & faces Winton Street ( No 66). It is also of brick construction, high ceilings & had a separate kitchen and four main rooms. There was also a feed room at the back, stables an out house and three cells and an exercise yard. The walls of this building are about 15 inches thick and when the sewerage was connected, it was found to have rock foundations six feet deep & about 6 feet wide. The present Police Station was built on to the residence and opened in 1985. There is also a brick stable building behind the residence & a timber stable behind the Court House.

Records kept at the Court House show that there are two bodies buried in the yard somewhere in unmarked graves. The bodies were not identified, nor was a cause of death established. The BDM records for Tumbarumba from about 1865 are still in the Court House, to the best of my knowledge. The local historical society also has good records, I believe.

Conditions there for Police would have been fairly rugged. The area was a gold mining and then timber town. The climate is very cold with an average winter minimum of minus 4 degrees( celsius) in July. The Police area would have covered areas such as Laurel Hill, Jingellic, Khancoban & half way to Holbrook (then Germanton). All this on horseback. I recall talking to an old officer who had been stationed there in the 1930's & his recollections were that a patrol to Khancoban usually took four days on horseback with a stop over night at Jingellic Station, Tooma Station & Khancoban Station.

Sergeant David Maginnity was shot near Tumbarumba in 1864 by Dan 'Mad Dog' Morgan & his grave is in the Tumbarumba Cemetery. Maginnity's widow moved to an area called Tooma, some 18 miles south east of Tumbarumba, where her descendants still live.


John Holstein
Northmead NSW
(formerly of Tumbarumba, which helps to explain some of what I have told you).

REF: email to by John Holstein on 8 July 1998



1997-2018 Jenny Brandis

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