William Crook, George Farley & Mounted Constable George SmithPrint Page Print this page


Photographs supplied by Stephen Warren

The plaque commemorates William Crook, George Farley and Mounted Constable George Thomas Smith who died in the ‘well tragedy’ in December 1928. 

Mounted Constable Smith in 1928 died after he descended a Gumeracha well in which he tried to rescue two men overcome by poisonous fumes. On his descent the fumes had begun to affect him too. He tried to ascend but became overpowered fell to the base of the well and died with the men he had tried to rescue.


Address:16 Albert Street, Gumeracha Police Station , Gumeracha, 5233
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -34.824842
Long: 138.883973
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Plaque
Monument Theme:People
Actual Event Start Date:31-December-1928
Actual Event End Date:31-December-1928


Actual Monument Dedication Date:Saturday 12th May, 1990
Front Inscription

Police Heritage Site

Erected to the memory of William Crook, George Farley and Mounted Constable George Thomas Smith.

On 31st December 1928 an explosion occured while George Farley was working at the base of a 20 metre deep well approximately 30 metres
east of this site. 

William Crook entered the well to assist but failed to emerge.  Mounted Constable George Thomas Smith, stationed at Gumeracha then immediately entered the well to try to rescue the two men but was overcome by fumes.  All three perished. The cause of the explosion was never fully established.

A memorial archway was erected in front of the Town Hall approximately 300 metres north-east of this site.

This plaque was unveiled by the Commissioner of Police, Mr. D. A. Hunt, QPM, JP in the 12th May 1990.

"Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends"  John 15 : 13

The plaque was provided by the South Australian Police Historical Society, Lions Club of Torrens Valley, Torrens Valley and District Historical Society, District Council of Gumeracha, and the descendants of Mounted Constable George Thomas Smith.

Source: MA
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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