On 20 July 1930, Edith Margaret Smith, her Pomeranian dog, jewellery and clothes went missing from her Gloucester home never to be seen again. It was not her husband Albert Augustus Smith who reported her missing but her mother who lived in Sydney. Edith’s disappearance made national newspapers and her photos were posted around the state.
Edith was a beautiful woman who was a talented jazz musician and toured the nation playing the drums in orchestras. She had married her husband in 1924 but had thrice left him. It was only after a ‘chance’ meeting in Sydney that she returned to him.
Albert, a baker and picture theatre proprietor, claimed that Edith had taken £280 which he hid under the linoleum and when that was spent he was sure she would return. But she did not.
Twelve months earlier, Edith had escaped a violent death while living with her mother in Sydney. A box containing 22 plugs of gelignite, detonator caps and a length of fuse were found in the house and in a box at one end of the fuse was found a previously alight candle which had flickered out before the fuse ignited. Police never determined who had tried to kill her. 1
When police searched the Gloucester home they found a length of fuse but police were unable to determine whether it was connected with Edith’s previous close call or a coincidence.
To learn more about Albert Augustus Smith and Edith’s possible fate click here.
Author: Janine Roberts
1 Northern Champion, 4 October 1930