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Strange Snakebite Stories

Written by Annie O'Riley ( on March 19, 2014

There are no end to strange and unusual stories of snake bite in Victoria. Keeping in mind that our climate and terrain is so suitable for our slithering little friends and the fact that in Victoria almost all snakes are poisonous, it is surprising that more of our early settlers weren’t bitten.  I have already published some of these stories such as “Once Bitten, Twice Ouch”, the story of poor old John Hourigan who, while working as an engine driver and inspector of pumps on the railway was bitten and survived only to be bitten again four days later.

This following story was published in the Trafalgar Times in December of 1908: “Archie Bridges, was bitten on the leg by a snake on Monday, 30th November. Bridges was camping in a tent with some mates at Narracan and while in the act of dressing in the morning he stood upon the reptile which instantly bit him. He was brought to Trafalgar and attended to by Dr Smithwick and is now out of danger. Bridges is a well known resident and is the possessor of a wooden leg. Referring to the matter Bridges says he would not have minded had the snake bitten the wooden leg, but to get his only sound leg attacked in that way was something beyond a joke.”

An article appeared in The Argus on the 2nd of September 1910. “MIRBOO NORTH, Thursday.-Eric Mayall, a scholar at the Mardan school, had a strange experience one morning last week. Whilst carrying to school a small snake in a bottle for nature study purposes, he was bitten on the leg by another snake. As he was only a short distance from home, the bite was treated, and he is now none the worse for his adventure.”

Published on the 9th of February 1919 is the following. “STRANGE CASE OF SNAKEBITE. MIRBOO NORTH, Thursday. A curious case of snakebite occurred at Budgeree on Wednesday. A man named Edward Feutrill was lying on his bed when a snake fell from the rafters of the hut and bit him twice on his hand. The man was taken to Boolarra, but died soon after arrival.”

I think I will check the rafters before dropping off to sleep tonight.

Written by Annie O'Riley. Annie is the author of and has been researching local history for over 30 years. She is constantly finding new stories and characters to write about.

Relevant Strange Snakebite Stories Links