Lesley Loades and the River Torrens

On the 26th of January 1896 Lesley Howard LOADES drowned in the River Torrens while playing with his younger brother Edward Waller LOADES. The verdict from the inquest at the time was that it was an accidental drowning (South Australian Police Gazette).

Lesley Howard was born on the 12th February 1880 the eldest boy to Edward Waller LOADES and Margaret Ann  REED. He had four sisters and one younger brother. At the time of his death he was playing with his younger brother Edward Loades.

Lesley drowned close to the collation on the river where the photo was taken. The reports in the newspaper tell us that Lesley could not swim. At the time the two boys were trying to send some dogs into the river when Lesley slipped. The reeds in the river meant that the body was not easy to recover.

lesley howard drowning

“DROWNING FATALITIES.” The Express and Telegraph (Adelaide, SA : 1867 – 1922) 27 January 1896: 3 (SECOND EDITION). Web. 19 Dec 2017 <http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article209056436&gt;

The newspaper artciles provide us with a glimpse of what happened on that day in January 1896, mainly from the perspective of the rescuers rather than the family. We can only assume that the drowing and loss of his older brother had an effect on the young boy Edward. In 1921 he named his first born son Lesley Howard LOADES in remberance of his brother.

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