Site NameMount Rouse
Aboriginal Place Name
Language GroupDjab wurrung or Gai wurrung
Present State/TerritoryVIC
Colony/State/Territory at the timePPD
Police DistrictGeelong
Latitude-37.885
Longitude142.303
Date11 Jun 1840
Attack TimeDay
VictimsAboriginal People
Victim DescriptionsAboriginal
Victims Killed20
Victims Killed NotesKilled: M up to 40 28 August - 30 Sept - 5 (or 11 June?) 29 April 1841- 20 Total of 40 Ab killed in this series of affrays F1 - Tuurap warneen; Probable: M F; Possible: M 12 August - Wedge shot 10 more Ab near the Grampians F; Wounded: M F
AttackersColonisers
Attacker DescriptionsSettler(s)
Attackers Killed0
Attackers Killed NotesKilled:M F;Wounded:MWedge's shepherd F
TransportHorse
MotiveReprisal
Weapons UsedFirearm(s), Musket(s), Pistol(s)
NarrativeOn 19 May 1840, overseer Patrick Codd was killed at Mount Rouse Station by five Aborigines of the Kolorer gundidj clan, [Djab wurrung or Gai wurrung speakers] and allegedly led by Taigara, also known as ‘Roger the Russian’, in retaliation for the murder of the Aboriginal warrior, Tuurap warneen. Taigara was later convicted and hanged for Codd's murder (Critchett 1990, p. 160) although Superintendent La Trobe was not convinced of his guilt on the grounds that there were no white witnesses at the murder (La Trobe to Gipps, 26 July 1842, cited in Shaw 1989, p.150). Codd was overseer and bookkeeper for the Wedge Brothers at the Grange, Strathkellar, just above present day Hamilton. Five days before his death, Codd had 'gone across' to Mount Rouse station 'to superintend the stock there during the projected absence of the overseer, James M Brock.' (Clark 1995, pp 62) Charles Wedge wrote to his father JH Wedge in England about what happened after the Aborigines had killed Codd: 'On the following day or soon after Codd met his death, the squatters in the neighbourhood went in pursuit of the natives; but, owing to the wetness of the season, they did not succeed in revenging themselves so far as they intended; however, I believe three or four suffered.... They [the squatters] are determined (as they pay for protection and receive none) to exterminate this hostile tribe, without such protection is given them as will enable them to live in comparative security' (Charles Wedge to JH Wedge, Enclosure in Russell to Gipps, 20 February 1841, HRA, I, xxi, p.242). On 29 April 1841, GA Robinson was told by Captain Campbell, storekeeper at Port Fairy, 'that in revenge for Codd's death, 20 had been taken.' (Robinson's journal 29 April 1841, cited in Clark 1998b, p. 161).
SourcesHRA, I, xxi, 242; Clark 1995, pp 62-3,156; Clark 1998b, pp 160-62; Shaw, 1989, p 150. (Sources PDF)
Corroboration Rating***