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The Maitland Mercury and Hunter River General Advertiser, Tue 16 Feb 1875 1


    SERIOUS ACCIDENT.—A very serious accident happened to an old man, named Charles Randall, an old resident of Maitland, on Saturday morning, from which he has lost a hand. It appears that on the morning named, Mr Randall went to the steam sawmills of Mr Wolstenholme, in High-street, to get some small pieces of wood cut for his son. The men cut one or two, and than declined to try any more, as it was too dangerous an experiment, owing to the liability of the wood to fly off. Mr Randall declared he could do it himself, and at once commenced, although cautioned as to the danger. He had only been at the saw a few moments, when by some means or other his hand touched the teeth of the saw, which at once drew his hand in, and cut completely through the bone at the wrist, the hand only hanging by a portion of the skin and flesh. The saw then, owing probably to an endeavour by the unfortunate man to draw his arm away, took a direction right through the palm of his hand, and cut several of his fingers to pieces. Directly the accident occurred, Mr R Robinson at once bound the hand up as carefully as possible in the excitement, and a spring-cart being in the yard at the time, Randall was at once placed in it, and conveyed to the residence of Dr RJ Pierce. The hand presented a frightful sight, being literally cut to pieces, and a great deal of blood was lost, the poor man having fainted after being placed in the cart. Dr Pierce was met on his way to the accident, and at once returned to his residence, where after examining the hand, he at once ordered Randall’s removal to the hospital, whither he was immediately taken. On his arrival at the hospital, it was found that amputation would have to be resorted to, and the operation was successfully performed by Dr John Pierce. Great fears were entertained that the sufferer would succumb to the effects of the accident, as he is an old man, and has hardly recovered from a very painful accident which befel [sic] him lately; but on Sunday, though suffering great pain, he was a little more cheerful. We forgot to mention that it was the left hand that was cut off.—Mr Randall had been in the employ of Mr Wolstenholme for twenty years as a sawyer, and had been employed for part of that time at the vertical steam saw; but for some years he has gained his livelihood by keeping a small fruit shop, and collecting bottles. Owing to his having been employed so long on the establishment he was allowed greater latitude in the mill.

    INDECENT BEHAVIOUR.—Alice Eckford was brought before the bench at the West Maitland police court, yesterday, charged with having behaved in an indecent manner in view of Hannan-street, West Maitland, on the 12th inst. She pleaded guilty to the charge, and Senior-sergeant Kerrigan said that she was one of the greatest nuisances they had ever had in Maitland, and that she occupied a house under the Long Bridge, which was a great nuisance. She was sentenced to hard labour in Maitland gaol for the term of three months.—Charles Smith was charged with a like offence, he being the person in company with the woman in the previous case. He pleaded guilty, but on account of the good character he received, and this being his first offence, he was let off with a sentence of three days’ imprisonment.

    EXPOSING THE PERSON.—George Walton was brought up at the West Maitland police court, yesterday, charged with exposing his person in High-street, Greta, on the 11th instant. He pleaded guilty, and the facts of the case were stated by constable Powell, who arrested him. He was convicted, and ordered to pay a fine of £5 (the lowest penalty under the Act), or in default of payment, to go to gaol for seven days.

    ABSCONDING FROM HIS APPRENTICESHIP.—William Fitzpatrick, a boy about fourteen years of age, was charged at the West Maitland police court yesterday, with having absconded from the indentured apprenticeship of Mr W Arren. Mr H Levien said he had been instructed to watch the case for the prisoner. Senior-Sergeant Kerrigan said the boy was an orphan, and could not be better treated than he was by Mr Arren; but he had run away to Sydney, and knocked about there till the people picked him up for charity. On Mr Arren going into the box, and deposing that the boy was his indentured apprentice, Mr Levien asked to see the indentures, and as they were not in court, and the boy declined to go back to his employ, the case was adjourned for an hour for the production of the indentures. On the case being again called on, Mr Arren produced the indenture, and the boy still declined to go back, as he said Mrs Arren beat him. The bench expressed an opinion that Mrs Arren would not beat him unless he deserved it, and stated that if she did he had a remedy against it. He was ordered to return to his master’s employment, and he was informed that the police had instructions if they found him about the streets to take him up as a vagrant, and that if they did he would be sent on board the Vernon. 

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The Maitland Mercury and Hunter River General Advertiser, Tue 17 Aug 1875 2


    POLICE BUSINESS.—The Bench at the West Maitland police court yesterday consisted of the Police magistrate, and Messrs Badgery, CR Middleton, and Dr Morson. Dr Morson of course left the bench during the hearing of the case in which he was concerned. Ten cases were dealt with.

    VAGRANCY.—Alice Eckford, who was yesterday charged att the West Maitland police court for vagrancy, was fined 20s or three days in gaol. 


1  The Maitland Mercury and Hunter River General Advertiser, Tue 16 Feb 1875, p. 3. Emphasis added.

2  The Maitland Mercury and Hunter River General Advertiser, Tue 17 Aug 1875, p. 3. Emphasis added.