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The Burrangong Argus and Burrowa, Murrumborrah, and Marengo General Advertiser, Sat 25 Jul 1891 1

Young courthouse, opened 6 Apr 1886. Photo: Peter de Waal
Young courthouse, opened 6 Apr 1886. Photo: Peter de Waal


    QUARTER SESSIONS.—The sittings of the [Young] Court of Quarter Sessions will be held in the new Court house on Tuesday next, 28th instant. His Honor Judge Forbes will preside, and Mr H[erbert] Harris will prosecute for the Crown. So far there are only three cases for trial. These are George Rae, forging and uttering; William Williams, bestiality; Joseph Leishman, alias Joseph Taylor, stealing from the person. Of these the two former were committed by the local [Young] bench and the latter by the Murrumburrah magistrates. All are in the Young Gaol awaiting trial.

     CHANGES.—Mr Taylor, who has for some time past been assistant operator in the local telegraph office, has taken his departure from Young, having received promotion in the department. He has been removed to Deniliquin, where he will doubtless succeed in making himself as well liked as he has been during his residence here. Although Mr Taylor’s considerable circle of friends naturally regret his removal from their midst, they are at the same time rejoiced to know of his deserved advancement in the service. Mr Grimm, lately of Corowa, and who comes to us with the reputation of having made many friends wherever he has been, succeeds Mr Taylor.

    A FRESH FACE.—The Post Office clock has received a fresh face. That is to say it is as fresh as paint can make it. “The old order changeth, giving place to the new,” the poet tells us. If this is exemplified in the freshly-painted clock many people will rejoice, and it may save some expenditure of energy in the direction of strong language. If it will change the old order of its going and give place to a new power of keeping correct time in the future it will not have been painted in vain. But since the internal arrangements have not been overhauled, and the old clock is left to go as she pleases, she can never be what the fancy of the new chum looker-on painted her—neither can she be beautiful or in any respect divine. Rather the other way in fact. Put not your faith in fresh (painted) faces, either of clock or woman. Neither are to be depended on.

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The Burrangong Argus and Burrowa, Murrumborrah, and Marengo General Advertiser, Wed 29 Jul 1891 2


The ordinary sittings of the Court of Quarter Sessions were opened on Tuesday morning, before His honor Mr District Court Judge Forbes.
    Mr Harris prosecuted for the Crown. The bar was further represented by Mr Mason, barrister-at-law and Mr J Russell, solicitor.
    The number of cases was not large, though the usual panel of jurors had been summoned.


    William Williams was charged with having committed a heinous offence and pleaded not guilty.

    The jury having been empannelled [sic], Mr Harris, Crown Prosecutor, stated the case against the prisoner. The offence was committed in June last on the Monteagle road with a mare. Evidence was given by James Sweeney, who witnessed the the [sic] act of prisoner, by James Wallis, Charles Rule, and Senior-constable O’Brien, the latter having arrested the prisoner. The testimony, quite unfit for publication, was of a more than usually disgusting nature. It pointed to the actual committal of the offence, and to virtual admissions of it by the accused to the witnesses. The prisoner cross-examined the witnesses at considerable length, with a view of showing that the charge was one of conspiracy on the part of the persons who gave evidence against him to get him out of the way, they having assaulted him in his tent. He also addressed the jury apparently with the same object.

    His Honor having summed up, the jury retired.

    At the conclusion of Leishman’s case the jury in William’s case were called in. His Honor asked if he could give any information in respect to the case.

    The Crown Prosecutor asked on behalf of the Crown that the jury might be informed that they could find the prisoner guilty of the attempt. His Honor declined to do so. The prisoner was guilty or not. If they believed the evidence the prisoner must be convicted of the offence. If they didn’t believe the witnesses they mus acquit him.

    The jury after a few minutes consideration, and without leaving the box, found the prisoner guilty.

    His Honor remarked, that with the evidence adduced, he did not see how any other decision could have been arrived at. Before passing sentence his Honor requested Sub-inspector Burns to make inquiries as to the previous history of the prisoner, and adjourned the Court until the following morning for that purpose.

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Evening News, Wed 29 Jul 1891 3


    YOUNG, Tuesday.—The Quarter Sessions opened to-day before Judge Forbes. Mr Harris acted as Crown Prosecutor.

    William Williams was found guilty of beastiality [sic] and remanded till to-morrow so that the police may make inquiries as to his previous character. This finished the business.

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Evening News, Thu 30 Jul 1891 4


    YOUNG, Wednesday.—William Williams, found guilty of bestiality at yesterday’s Quarter Sessions, and remanded for sentence until this morning so that the police could make inquiries as to his previous character, was sentenced to seven years’ penal servitude.

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The Burrangong Argus and Burrowa, Murrumborrah, and Marengo General Advertiser, Sat 1 Aug 1891 5

Before His Honor Judge Forbes

THE sittings of the General Sessions, adjourned from Tuesday, were continued on Wednesday morning.


    William Williams, found guilty on the previous day of having committed an unnatural offence, was brought up for sentence. Sub-inspector Burns informed the Court that he had made inquiries as to the past history of the prisoner, but he had been unable to glean any particulars about him. He was not known to the police in Sydney, at any rate under the name under which he was now arraigned.

    His Honor then informed the prisoner that he had been convicted on the clearest evidence of a most heinous offence. He had laid himself open to a penalty of imprisonment for life, and had rendered himself liable to whipping in addition. In some circumstances the penalty could be reduced to five years. However, there were no mitigating circumstances about the case whatever. The prisoner was then sentenced to seven years penal servitude.

    The prisoner asked to be sent to Goulburn gaol, a request to which his Honor made no response.
    The prisoner was then removed

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William Williams, Gaol photo sheet 6

SRNSW: NRS2232, [3/5970], Goulburn Gaol photographic description book, 24 Sep 1890- 13 Apr 1893, No. 825, p. 109, R5119.

Gaol Photo Sheet - 
Transcribed Details

No. 825

Date when Portrait was taken: 19th January 1892

Name: William Williams

Native place: England

Year of birth: 1822

Arrived       Ship: Maria Mary
in Colony }   Year:

Trade or occupation
previous to conviction  } Miner

Religion: C of E

Education, degree of: Nil

Height: 5' 3½"

Weight     On committal: Exempted
in lbs     } On discharge:

Colour of hair: Grey

Colour of eyes: Brown

Marks or special features: Jean Williams on right arm. A fish on left leg

Where and when tried: Young Q.S.
28 July 1891

Offence: Bestiality

Sentence: 7 years PS


(No. of previous Portrait ... )


Where and When Offence. Sentence








1     The Burrangong Argus and Burrowa, Murrumborrah, and Marengo General Advertiser, Sat 25 Jul 1891, p. 2. Emphasis added.

2     The Burrangong Argus and Burrowa, Murrumborrah, and Marengo General Advertiser, Wed 29 Jul 1891, p. 2. Emphasis added.

3     Evening News, (Sydney, NSW), Wed 29 Jul 1891, p. 3.

4     Evening News, (Sydney, NSW), Thu 30 Jul 1891, p. 6.

5     The Burrangong Argus and Burrowa, Murrumborrah, and Marengo General Advertiser, Sat 1 Aug 1891, p. 2. Emphasis added.

6     SRNSW: NRS2232, [3/5970], Goulburn Gaol photographic description book, 24 Sep 1890- 13 Apr 1893, No. 825, p. 109, R5119.