An early areoplane crash near Marulan in February, 1929 sparked national interest at the time.
Two men died in the crash of the Gipsy Moth areoplane, after departing Goulburn early on February 11, 1929 in poor weather.
The men were Captain Edward W. Cornish and Kenneth James Wride.
Their de-Haviland Moth crashed on a rocky hillside near Marulan and the alarm was raised by a passing train, which stopped so the driver and guard could render assistance.
The Goulburn Evening Penny Post of February 11, 1929 reported the pair sustained fatal injuries and died before medical aid could reach them.
“The machine was reduced to a tangled mass of wreckage. As yet no explanation can be given as to the cause of the tragedy,” the the Penny Post reported.
“It is believed that the plane left Melbourne yesterday and it arrived in Goulburn about eight o'clock this morning and after circling over the city at a low altitude landed at the aerodrome.
“Later the airmen had breakfast at the Royal Hotel, and prior to resuming their journey to Sydney, it is stated, were advised by Captain Matheson, instructor to the Goulburn Aero Club, against continuing the flight in view of the extreme inclemency of the weather and unfavourable conditions for flying.
“Light rain was falling at the time and the clouds were very low. This, it was pointed out, would necessitate flying at a low altitude, while the visibility was anything but good.
“However, the airmen left the Goulburn Aerodrome shortly after nine o'clock and were approaching Marulan about an hour later when tragedy overtook them. The machine was flying at an altitude of between 100 and 150 feet (45m) when it suddenly nose-dived and crashed on to a stony ridge on the property of Mr Thoroughgood, about three miles from Marulan.
“The impact was terrific and drove the engine into the pilot's cockpit. Both men were fearfully injured.”
A later verdict of ‘accidental death’ was delivered by relieving City Coroner, Mr. M. C. Nott.
“His opinion was that the airmen were unexpectedly caught in thicker weather than they expected and while possibly attempting to return to Goulburn they were enclosed in a very thick misty rain formation, resulting in the air visibility being practically nil,” the Goulburn Evening Penny Post reported on February 19, 1929.
The Sydney Morning Herald of February 12, 1929, reported Captain Cornish had a brilliant military career in the latter part of WWI.
“He had some remarkable experiences as a military aviator, and (flew for a total of about 1700 hours over the German lines) until shortly before the armistice, when he was engaged by about six enemy planes. After a valiant battle, in which he shot down three of the opponents, he was forced down.”
Mr Wride was was country district organiser for Dalgety and Co. Ltd.