Unidentified grave puzzle solved
THE mystery of who lies in the unidentified grave near the abandoned copper mines of Calgoa at Kilkivan has been solved.
Almost two years ago, John Turner said his late mother had told him the grave could have belonged to the mother-in-law of Alf Turner however that information could not be confirmed at the time.
“Further research has confirmed the grave at the mines is in fact that of Catherine Holcroft, Alf’s mother-in-law,” John Turner said.
“Phil Turner located the records that confirmed this.
“Steve and Sharon Turner removed trees that endangered the grave.
“A brass plaque was made at a working bee of Yan, Ned, John, Steven and Sharon Turner completed the work and cemented the plaque into a rock cairn.
“It now looks much better but we still plan to fence it to protect it from cattle.”
However the location of John Turner’s uncle, who died as a baby, remains unknown.
In 1902 the Turner brothers, George and Bob, bought into the already established mining venture with Harry Wharton. Alf Turner and another brother were also involved in the operations that continued until 1909 when the price of copper collapsed.
In July that year the first born son of George and Ellen Turner, also named George, died at the mines. The tiny baby lasted only a few days after his mother went through a long labour and difficult birth. The infant is believed to be buried nearby but no visible signs of a child’s grave exist.
John Turner said the family would also place markers at the sites of Turner houses near the mines.
They were also putting together a collection of historical photos (original and digital) along with details of the Calgoa district and the Turner family in the John Oxley Library.
“There they will be catalogued and preserved and still remain accessible.”
Meanwhile, John Turner urged people to preserve their family histories for future generations.
“Too many records are lost on the death of a family member,” he said.
“My late mother was a hoarder and I have worked my way through that hoard.”