DANGEROUS TIMES: Gympie's early miners faced danger on the job every day. Thomas Savage's death in a Gympie mine on April 18, 1887 was one of numerous tragedies on the goldfield.
DANGEROUS TIMES: Gympie's early miners faced danger on the job every day. Thomas Savage's death in a Gympie mine on April 18, 1887 was one of numerous tragedies on the goldfield.

What really happened to miner Thomas Savage?

WHO: Gympie Family History Society

WHAT: Cemetery Crawl

WHEN: 6.30pm, Wednesday, October 19

WHERE: Gympie Cemetery

JUST how did Thomas Savage meet his demise?

On Monday, April 18, 1887, during the process of baling a Gympie mine's 150 feet of water, the whim rope jumped off the wheel and Thomas Savage and a boy employed on the mine went up to the poppet head to replace it.

Once replaced on the wheel, instead of returning down the ladder, in a childish act, Thomas youthfully slid down the rope to the ground level.

Sadly, he misplaced his footing whilst trying to get off the rope, let go of it too soon, and fell backwards down the shaft.

A huge effort was made to try quickly try and recover him for several hours, but it appeared he had not survived the fall - and it even seems his body was never recovered.

To find out more about the family and how they survived the loss of their father, head along the the Gympie Family History Society's October cemetery crawl on Wednesday, October 19.

Who was the Aussie Digger from the family who was killed in action in 1918? Where did they come from?

Other family names researched for the cemetery crawl include Beutel, Ryan, Mackay, Olsen and Cockburn.

The crawl gets under way from the shed at the Gympie Cemetery at 6.30pm, but come a little earlier for a chat and to meet new people.

Cost is $7.50 ($5 for GFHS members) and includes a light supper and booklet. There is also a vegie tray raffle for $1 a ticket.

The crawl will take place regardless fo the weather. Wear good walking shoes, bring a torch and bug spray if you need it.

Bookings to assist with catering and printing would be appreciated so give Di Woodstock a call on 0419 224 628.

Gympie Times


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