In 1900, the store of WH Betts was opened in the old wool store overlooking the harbour at Murat Bay. In July 1910, the company of WH Betts Limited, purchased from the late Mr WH Betts the goodwill of the business. The old store was burnt, completely gutted on Saturday 12 Nov 1910, recorded by SA Davies, manager of Mr WH Bett’s store at Murat Bay.
This building was right next to the jetty, note the jetty and ship in background of photo.
Register. 26 Oct 1905. Late on Saturday night or early on Sunday morning the business premises of Mr WH Betts, of Murat Bay, were broken into and a quantity of goods stolen. Two youths named Arnold (aged 17) and Ashby (20) were arrested by MC Hansberry. They were brought before Mr W McKenzie charged with shop breaking and were committed for trial.”
26 March 1904. The town is growing, the first building having been erected about 4 years ago by Mr WH Betts, who opened a general store. At this store there is a post office and a promise has been made by the Postal Department that telephonic communication will be established at Murat Bay. This will be a source of convenience not only to the business people, but to the general public. The Mail Contract is for two mails weekly.
29 Nov 1910. The Advertiser. Ceduna. This township is growing. Several buildings are being erected, including a store for Mr WH Betts and additions to the Ceduna Hotel.
11 Feb 1911. STORAGE OF EXPLOSIVES. MURAT BAY. At the Local Police Court today Messrs WH Betts & Co, storekeepers, were charged on the information of WJ Symonds, harbormaster, with storing explosives without a license, and also with not having a proper storing magazine. Eight hundred pounds of gelignite was stored in an old shed. The defendants pleaded guilty, and was fined 1d per lb and court expenses. They were allowed one month to erect a magazine.
Advertiser. 16 April 1912. Denial Bay. Mr Lower, manager for Betts & Co, of Penong, 40 miles from Denial Bay, had the misfortune to break his foot and dislocate two of the metartarsal bones, a loaded truck on the jetty passing over it. The injury is of a serious nature. Mr Harry Brown, manager for Betts & Co, motored up to Penong and brought the sufferer to Dr Abbott’s surgery at Denial Bay. Later Dr Abbott, assisted by Dr O’Day, of Murat, reduced the fracture and did what was possible to relieve the sufferer. There being no hospital the patient is being taken care of by Mr and Mrs Burke, at the Federal Hotel, who give him every attention.
HISTORY BITS AND PIECES Some stories and photos of our district by Sue Trewartha and Erica Bodger. See Ceduna Old Photos on Facebook for more local history and photos.