News

Nimbin man's gruesome murder of four made history books

THE night a Nimbin farmer gruesomely killed four people in cold blood could well have formed the plot of a Stephen King novel.

The year was 1928.

The murderer: a "religious maniac" farmer from Nimbin.

The attack took place in a two-story house named St Elme in Harrow St, Rockdale, a south Sydney suburb.

The family had not been seated long for lunch when Garnet Robb, who was a relative visiting on holiday, came into the room with a loaded .32 rifle.

He fired a shot at one of the women and was tackled by his uncle, 80-year-old Joseph Palmer, who had been lying on the couch.

Mr Palmer attempted to wrestle the rifle from his grasp but was shot and staggered back to the veranda where he collapsed.

Robb kept shooting before running upstairs and barricading himself in one of the rooms where he shot himself.

Miss Jessie Palmer, 22, and the housekeeper Mrs Elizabeth Ashley died at the scene.

Mrs Edith Palmer, 42, died shortly after being admitted to hospital with two bullet wounds in the chest and Joseph Palmer was admitted to hospital with two bullet wounds to the abdomen.

John Palmer was also admitted to hospital unconscious and grave fears were held.

The grotesque scene was discovered by a Mrs Bagnall who had stopped by the house to pick up one of the women for an outing.

Instead she discovered the body of Joseph Palmer, sprawled in the doorway with a bullet wound in the head and murmuring "I have been murdered".

A search of the murderer's Nimbin bedroom uncovered two rifles, 100 rounds of ammunition, a long knife "sharpened to the keenness of a razor" and a book on spiritualism.

As news of the murders circulated, so too did tales of Robb's eccentricities.

He was said to have been "severely knocked about" during his war service. His main obsession was an almost fanatical study of spiritualism.

Robb was 42 and a bachelor when he died.

It was said that at one time he was engaged to be married to a 17-year-old girl, but the engagement was broken off.

He had inherited a farm at Blue Knob when his father died shortly before the massacre.

Topics:  history, murder, nimbin




Jodie inspires rugby team to wear pink at Charity Day

The Marist Brothers Rams wore pink to support Jodie McRae (centre) and her charity, Jodie's Inspiration, at the Rugby League Football Club Day on the weekend.

Marist Brothers help Jodie's Inspiration raise money for hospitals.

Kicking the TinCAN art show to help the elderly

CATCHING A TRAIN TO MOROCCO: This was one of the entries in the Tintenbar Art Show's photographic competition. Photo Contributed

The Tintenbar Art Show is on again over September

Fun time to run after the Olympics are over

FINISHED WELL: Runners in the Greater Casino Fun Run cross the line last year. Photo Samantha Elley / Express Examiner

Starlight Children's Foundation to benefit from fun run

Latest deals and offers

WATCH: News reader tries her hand at hardcore shooter, Doom

Veteran journo and noob gamer takes a shot at Doom

What's on the small screen this week

MasterChef Australia's final four contestants, from left, Harry Foster, Elena Duggan, Elise Franciskovic and Matt Sinclair.

MASTERCHEF makes way for The Bachelor on Ten's reality TV slate.

Splendour found The Cure

Robert Smith at the Splendour in the Grass Amphitheatre stage during The Cure's show.

Day two of Splendour in the Grass

Guy Sebastian a hit at Splendour in the Grass

Guy Sebastian performs at Splendour in the Grass with Paces.

REALITY TV judge a hit with festival crowd.

Splendour revellers cool down with giant poo emoji

The Mr Poopie sculpture at Splendour in the Grass.

Mr Poopie sculpture is inspired by the ice cream/poop emoticon.

Superheroes of the big screen enjoy sounds of Splendour

CHRIS Hemsworth and his Avengers mates drop by Byron festival.

You can own this Queensland town for just $1

Yelarbon

Unprecedented auction of town's business centre with no reserve

Work starts on $15M Caloundra apartment building

Turning the first sod at the Aqua View Apartments site in Kings Beach are (from left) husband-and-wife developers Alex Yuan and Stella Sun with construction company Tomkins director Mike Tomkins and Councillor Tim Dwyer.

Developers excited about addition to Kings Beach skyline

Plans revealed for 1500-lot 'master-planned community'

Precinct will be bounded by Boundary St and Shoesmith Rd

Ecco Ripley sales run sparks prime release

MOVING IN: Sekisui House has announced the release of more residential blocks at Ecco Ripley.

Sekisui House is preparing to unveil more land at Ecco Ripley

Massive residential 9-storey high-rise hit by delays

An artist’s impression of the eight-storey-high apartment complex that Bernoth Holdings wants to build in South Toowoomba, next to the City Golf Club.

Developer struggles to get approved high-rise development started