Constable Michael KINSELLA

Drowned

Perry (Menindee)

8 April, 1864

 

About 8am on 8 April, 1864 Constable Kinsella was drowned in the Boothingbee Creek, about four miles from Perry (now Menindee). At the time he had been returning on horseback from Tatiol, with a Mr. Walter Merry, and coming to the creek in question found that the only way of crossing was by means of a bark canoe, which was the way that the mail was usually carried across. The constable swam the two horses over, and then took the saddles across in the canoe, but then on returning across the creek, the frail canoe split and sank close to the bank. Unable to swim, the unfortunate constable immediately sank and drowned.

 

The Sydney Morning Herald dated 30 April, 1864 reported the tragedy, including the following interesting paragraph.

 

Whether Mr. Merry made any effort to save him does not appear from our informant’s letter, only that the former went to Perry and gave the alarm. Constable Newman then procured the assistance of the aborigine and proceeded to the spot, recovering the body at five o’clock in the afternoon.

 

The constable was born in 1835 and joined the New South Wales Police Force on 26 October, 1863. At the time of his death he was 38 years of age and was stationed at Perry (now Menindee). He had apparently only been in Australia for eight months and was a former member of the Irish Constabulary.

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