John William MURPHY

 John William MURPHY

New South Wales Police Force

Regd. # 7436

Rank:  Plain Clothes Constable ( 11 years )

Stations:  Newcastle ( all his service )

Service:  From  20 December 1899  to  7 September 1913 = 14 years


Born? ? 1870

Event: Tuesday 2 September & Wednesday 3 September 1913

Died on:  Sunday  7 September 1913

Cause:  pneumonia

Age:  41

Funeral date:  5.30am, Monday  8 September 1913

Funeral location:  Sandgate Cemetery

Buried at:  Roman Catholic portion of Sandgate Cemetery

Catholic 1 Portion, Section 13, Lot 11

Location of Grave: 

GPS:  -32.87081693341898   151.70432472502705

NSW Death Registration # 13497/1913

[alert_red]JOHN is NOT mentioned on the Police Wall of Remembrance[/alert_red]  *BUT SHOULD BE



 Newcastle Morning Herald & Miner’s Advocate                             Monday  8 September 1913                        page 5 of 8


Plain-clothes Constable John Murphy died in the Newcastle Hospital at half-past five yesterday morning, after a short illness. On Thursday he was admitted to the hospital suffering from an attack of pneumonia. His condition was very serious, and but little hope was held out of his recovery.

Forty-one years of age, Plain-clothes Constable Murphy had had about fourteen years’ service in the police force, during all of which he was stationed at Newcastle, and he had been doing plain-clothes duty for about eleven years.

A smart, capable detective, he was associated as a plain-clothes constable for over eight years with Senior-detective McHattie, and during that time those officers did some very creditable work in clearing up some forgeries and big railway robberies. He was also associated for a time with Plain-clothes Constable (now Detective) Ramsay.

Since the transfer of First-class Detective Surridge from Sydney to Newcastle, ten months ago, Plain-clothes Constable Murphy had been working with him, and they were instrumental in clearing up a number of serious and minor offences. He was popular with his colleagues, and particularly well liked by those with whom he came into immediate contact ; and his good-nature was well-known. On many occasions he has put his hand in his pocket to help even those who had come within the reach of the law. He was also popular with the public, and his death will be regretted by a large circle of friends.

His last duty was with Detective Surridge on Tuesday and Wednesday nights last attending to certain offences that had been committed between Hornsby and Newcastle, necessitating both officers spending two nights in the bush. He complained on Thursday morning of feeling ill on the return journey to Newcastle, and later in the day he was ordered into the hospital.

His father is Mr. Edward Murphy, a grazier, of Collingwood station, Murrumburrah, to whom telegrams have been forwarded. His sister, Mrs. F. Cooper, and her husband arrived at Newcastle yesterday from Sydney.

The funeral will leave the Newcastle Hospital at twenty minutes to three o’clock this afternoon for the Roman Catholic portion of the Sandgate Cemetery. The district police will be present, and Mr. Day, the Inspector- General, last night gave his sanction for the Police Band from Sydney to attend if the members could be notified in time for them to catch the train this morning.



Newcastle Morning Herald & Miner’s Advocate                             Tuesday  9 September 1913                        page 4 of 8


The funeral of Constable John Murphy, who died in the Newcastle Hospital at an early hour on Sunday morning took place yesterday afternoon from the hospital, and the large attendance was a tribute to the deceased’s popularity.

The procession, which attracted hundreds of people along the line of march, proceeded by way of Telford-street, Hunter street, Extended, and Watt-street, to the railway station.

The Newcastle and district police, under Acting Superintendent Banks and Sub-inspector McHardy, to the number of nearly 100, headed the procession, then came the hearse and the general public. The length of the procession may be estimated when it is stated that the front portion had turned into Watt-street before the rear had reached the municipal jubilee memorial in the park.

The pall-bearers were Senior Detective McHattie, Detective Surridge, and Constables A. Roberts and G. Ferguson. Wreaths were sent by Miss Zoe Brady, Mr. Myer Cohen, Mr. and Mrs. E. W. Hough, Mr. and Mrs. J McHattie, Mr. Banfield, Mr. and Mrs. Howden, Mr. and. Mrs. J. Probert, Mr. E. W. Bearby, and the Newcastle and sub-district police. The police also sent a beautiful wreath of immortelles.

The chief mourner was Mrs. Cooper, a sister of deceased. At the graveside, the Rev. Father M Keenan, of St. Mary’s, Newcastle, conducted the service, which was of a most impressive character, the deceased being buried with all the rites of the Roman Catholic Church.



The Maitland Daily Mercury ( NSW )                Saturday  13 September 1913     page 6 of 12

Constable T. Ryan who for some time has been lockup-keeper at Wallsend, has been appointed to the plain-clothes branch of the Newcastle police, in succession to the late Constable John Murphy. By the way, it is stated as a sad circumstance in connection with the death of the popular officer named, that he was to have been married on the date of his demise.



This man is NOT recorded on the Police Memorial system but it is apparent, from reading these two articles, that the man contracted pneumonia from direct exposure over two nights in the bush in order to capture offenders.

He returns to his station on the 3rd day, and is directed to hospital where he dies three days later from pneumonia.

That sounds like a duty related death under those circumstances to me.


25 March 2014 ( 100 years later. )