Glenthorne Public School operated for 63 years with nine teachers serving the small community.1 Of these teachers, four suffered tragic events while serving in their roles.
William Percy was a popular teacher who loved playing cricket. He passed his pupil teacher’s examination at 13 and worked his way to full teacher. He taught at Glenthorne for nearly six years but in 1899 became unwell. His illness only lasted a week before he died suddenly at the age of 30. The students were greatly saddened by their teacher’s death.2
“Look for me in the cornfield at rear of wash-house”. This was the note left by teacher William Wrightson on 3 February 1912. Neighbours searched and found his body with his rifle next to him. Inside the house William left a will, a letter for his wife and notes for the police. He was only 39 years old.3
John Rose was a kind man who loved cricket and tennis. He worked in many schools in the Manning and Stroud regions. At Christmas, he travelled to Boggabri to visit relatives but became unwell and had an urgent operation. He died unexpectedly New Year’s Day 1931.4
The final tragedy occurred in 1936 when four people from the same family drowned. They were visiting from out of town when they drove to the Tinonee punt on a rainy night. The driver failed to see the stop sign in the dark and their car plunged into the river. The victims were relatives of the wife of Henry Ivey, the last teacher to work at Glenthorne Public School.5
Author: Janine Roberts
1 NSW Dept of Education, History of NSW government schools, Glenthorne https://nswgovschoolhistory.cese.nsw.gov.au/schoolHistory?schoolId=3402
2 Manning River Times,1 March 1899.
3 Richmond River Herald & Northern Districts Advertiser,13 February 1912.
4 Wingham Chronicle, 1 Jan 1931.
5 Wingham Chronicle, 17 April 1936.