Site NameCrawford River
Aboriginal Place Name
Language GroupDhauwurd wurrung or Wulluwurrung
Present State/TerritoryVIC
Colony/State/Territory at the timePPD
Police DistrictPortland
DateBetween 1 Sep 1843 and 30 Sep 1843
Attack TimeDay
VictimsAboriginal People
Victim Descriptions
Victims Killed9
Victims Killed NotesKilled: M F; Probable: M at least 9 F; Possible: M F; Wounded: M F
Attacker DescriptionsNative Police
Attackers Killed0
Attackers Killed NotesKilled:M F;Wounded:M F
Weapons UsedFirearm(s)
NarrativeIn August 1843, Christopher Bassett, lessee of Bassett’s Station at the head of the Crawford River, was killed by Aboriginal people who then ‘carried off 200’ sheep (Clark, 1995, p 46). A month later, HEP Dana, Commandant of the Native Police Corps, led a detachment of native police, accompanied by squatter David Edgar of the adjoining Fitzroy River station and set off in pursuit of the alleged killers. They ‘came upon the party near the edge of the great swamp’ (Clark, 1995, p 46) while searching for Martha Ward, two year old daughter of Abraham Ward, the licensee of the Travellers' Rest Hotel in Branxholme. ‘In two separate encounters with these Aborigines, they shot at least nine’ (Clark, 1995, p 46).
SourcesCritchett, 1990, p 252; Clark, 1995, pp 46-47; Shaw, 1996, p 132. (Sources PDF)
Corroboration Rating***