Telegraph Hotel (Plank Road)

From Hotels of Ballarat
For other hotels with the same, or similar names, see Telegraph Hotel
Telegraph Hotel
Picture needed
Town Ballarat
Street Main Road
Known dates 1858-1874

The Telegraph Hotel was a hotel in Ballarat, Victoria, <1858-<1879.

Site[edit | edit source]

The hotel was in Plank Road, Ballarat East,[1] also described in 1874 as Buninyong Road.[2] Bert Strange on his 1967 hotel map said the hotel was south of Elsworth Street but before Whitehorse Road. In April 1875 the husband of Mary Wilson said that they had shifted the hotel 50 yards in 1866 at a cost of £130.[3]

Background[edit | edit source]

History[edit | edit source]

In July 1866 a man committed suicide near the hotel, and his body was later stored in hotel stable awaiting an inquest:

" On Friday afternoon, at four o'clock," the Ballarat Star reports, "the attention of some passengers on the Buninyong-road was directed to a strange and suspicious looking object among the young trees growing above a cutting on the hill-side opposite the Telegraph Hotel, about two miles from Ballarat Mr. Pope happened to be passing at the time in a buggy, accompanied by a lady, and his attention was called by a bullock-driver to the spectacle, which on being closely approached proved to be what they had imagined-a man hanging, with his feet about a foot from the ground.

The man was a Chinese, and had evidently committed suicide but a very short time before, as his body was still warm. His neck was fastened with a piece of blue cloth, ordinarily used by Chinese for making their clothing, and tied around the fork of a sapling, at about eight feet from the ground. There was a drop of about nine inches from the branch to the knot round the neck, and at the foot of the tree the stump of another sapling was left, and formed an easy stage for the suicide to stand upon which he tied himself up. Mr. Pope at once drove to the police station and gave information, after which he drove back with Constable Ahern, and despatched Mr. Willams, surgeon, to the place. Efforts were made to restore animation by bleeding, but without avail ; and the body now lies in the stable of the hotel, awaiting an inquest. Deceased was a young and robust-looking man about twenty-five years of age, with plump features, and about 5ft. 7in. in height.

He has not been as yet identified, but was known to have camped the previous night a few yards distant from where he was found dead. On Friday, at midday, he was seen coming back towards the place from the direction of the Bush Inn. His swag was found under a bush close by, and consisted of a good supply of blankets, a piece of ornamental drugget, two coats, one a black cloth body coat with flapped side-pockets-a rather unusual style of Chinese dress. A pair of thick woollen socks were marked, in large letters of red thread, 'AT2.' The other articles found were a key, four copper pence, some Chinese tobacco, a small memorandum-book, with one or two papers having Chinese writing on them. These may probably lead to a discovery of his previous history; but it is supposed that be may have been gambling, and was reduced to despair."[4]

Community Involvement[edit | edit source]

The People[edit | edit source]

  • In July 1858 the license was granted to Nathan Ledger.[5]
  • In June 1859 the license was granted to L. Ledger.[6]
  • In 1859 is was claimed that Mary Wilson was at the hotel.[3]
  • In December 1873 the license was granted to William Ledger.[7]
    • In December 1874 William Ledger's application for the licence was objected to on the grounds that he was not living at the hotel.[2]
  • In April 1879, former publican Mary Wilson had a quantity of liquor forfeited with 20s costs.[8]

See also[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1869 'Advertising.', The Ballarat Star (Vic. : 1865 - 1924), 11 June, p. 3, viewed 10 August, 2015,
  2. 2.0 2.1 1874 'BALLARAT EAST LICENSING BENCH. ANNUAL MEETING.', The Ballarat Star (Vic. : 1865 - 1924), 15 December, p. 4, viewed 17 December, 2015,
  3. 3.0 3.1 1875 'TWO STURDY COLONISTS.', The Argus (Melbourne, Vic. : 1848 - 1957), 17 May, p. 6. , viewed 30 Jun 2023,
  4. 1866 'COUNTRY NEWS.', The Australasian (Melbourne, Vic. : 1864 - 1946), 28 July, p. 22. , viewed 26 Jun 2023,
  5. 1858 'DISTRICT POLICE COURT.', The Star (Ballarat, Vic. : 1855 - 1864), 3 July, p. 2. , viewed 17 May 2023,
  6. 1859 'AFTERNOON SITTINGS.', The Star (Ballarat, Vic. : 1855 - 1864), 14 June, p. 3. , viewed 14 Sep 2019,
  7. 1873 'LICENSING BENCH.', The Ballarat Star (Vic. : 1865 - 1924), 23 December, p. 2. , viewed 18 Jun 2017,
  8. 1879 'POLICE INTELLIGENCE.', The Ballarat Star (Vic. : 1865 - 1924), 25 April, p. 3. , viewed 30 Jun 2023,

External Links[edit | edit source]