Newspaper articles – The West Australian – 23rd- 26th January 1885

The West Australian



The messenger sent south with the telegrams we published yesterday announcing the murder at Roebourne of Messrs. Anketell and Burrup, of the Union Bank, is believed to have left that town at about 11 o’clock on the morning of the 13th inst., and it is now supposed that another messenger was sent off at a later hour of the same day, for a second telegram was despatched to the Superintendant of Police by Lance Corporal Taylor, from Carnarvon, late on Wednesday evening, to the following effect :

” Messenger from Roebourne, Ex constable Maher, will wait instructions from Bank Manager. Two tracks of whites seen at the bank, but cannot track – ground too rough. No chance of murderers getting away. No clue or suspicion of the murderers up to 4 p.m. 13th. One track about twelve inches long, stout boots ; the other short and thick, one boot inclined to one side.  Mary Smith, from Derby, only vessel in Cossack; arrived fortnight before murder. Will take messenger seven days to  return.”

The Union Bank, also, received a second telegram couched in similar terms. The Colonial Secretary had no additional intelligence. The constable is supposed to be at a locality about 120 miles beyond Carnarvon in the direction of the Ashburton, the furthest point on the overland line which the speaking wire has reached. The Acting Manager of the Union Bank, Mr. Scott, accompanied by Mr. Easton, leaves Fremantle today- in the Flowerdale for Roebourne, to take charge of the Nor’ West branch. No further news is expected to reach head quarters until a vessel comes down from Cossack.





WE are informed by Mr. Denny, principal manager of the Union Bank in this colony, that the schooner Flowerdale was specially chartered by the Bank to proceed to Cossack with Messrs. Scott and Easton, members of the staff, who will replace Messrs. Anketell and Burrup.

The tragic news of the murder reached Mr. Denny at Albany, where he was on a visit of inspection and had arranged to meet Mr. McMullen, the general manager of the Bank, who is a passenger by the s.s.Rome, due at Albany about the 26th inst. ; but upon receipt of the terrible intelligence from Roebourne Mr. Denny at once returned to Perth. The Bank has authorised the Government Resident at Roebourne to offer a reward of £500 for such evidence as may lead to the conviction of the murderers, should no clue in the meantime have been found.

The Government will probably supplement the reward offered by the Bank, if necessary. It appears that Mr. Scott was under orders to relieve Mr. Anketell, and would have been at Roebourne, in charge of the branch when the murder was committed, but for the interruption of the Nor’ West  steam service.