Bermagui Mystery revisited with historic site tour

MYSTERY: The wrecked boat was left to rot on the beach near where it was found. Illustrated Sydney News, November 20, 1880.

MYSTERY: The wrecked boat was left to rot on the beach near where it was found. Illustrated Sydney News, November 20, 1880.

The community is being invited to revisit the “Bermagui Mystery” with an upcoming site tour.

Bermagui and Narooma Historical Societies, along with Montreal Goldfield management committee, will revisit the greatest unsolved mystery of the South Coast on Sunday, September 17.

Five men disappeared in October 1880 including government geological surveyor Lamont Young who had just arrived in Bermagui to survey the new Montreal goldfields.

Their boat was discovered near the area that is now called Mystery Bay. Intriguing reported details were that the boat was smashed from the inside out, it contained several large rocks and the anchor and stern ropes were missing.

However, Young, his assistant Max Schneider and their three boatmen, Thomas Towers, William Lloyd and Daniel Casey, were never seen again, despite searches, rewards, government inquiries and wide media coverage.

The disappearance of the five men became known as “the Bermagui Mystery”.

At Sunday’s event, there will be four stops including Bermagui and Mystery Bay with 20-30 minutes at each, and a recommended optional extra stop after lunch for those interested. A car is essential; car pooling is advisable. Bring your own lunch and chair.

Meet at Bermagui Headland (between Horseshoe Bay and the river entrance) on Sunday before 10 ready for a prompt 10am start.

At each stop various people will outline evidence and observations of the time. The group will also be joined by descendants of some of the missing men.

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