So what was the next step to investigating the murders? Another friend Katrina, told me about the State Archives and that they are the source for many historical pieces of information.
After countless emails and internet searches I found the file was at the State Archives of QLD.
“Yes,” the email said, ” We have that murder file. However, you will need to fill out the attached forms to seek permission for access from the QLD police.”
That should be simple, I thought – until I looked at the forms.There were complicated, but I managed to fill them out, get my identity verified by my local police station and send them off. This shouldn’t take long.
The file could not be accessed for 100 years. It had only been 65 years – oh dear!
More forms to fill out, until finally the permission came through five months later.
I could view the file at the State Archive of QLD in Brisbane – I had twelve months to do it.
Can’t someone copy it for me? No – the permission meant that I had to fly there and sit in the archives and read over what I needed. I could not copy. I could not use a dictaphone. But I could take notes.
So I convinced my friend Valerie to come with me. We landed in Brisbane and while she shopped and took in the sights, I locked myself away and read the police investigation of the murders – all under the watchful eye of the archivist.
It took me seven hours. There was a newspaper article about the lead detective in the file – could I copy that? No – I would need to go the State Library and get a copy from them. My head started to ache – dive into my handbag for pain relief.
The next day, Valerie and I traipsed along to the State Library. We found a room where newspapers were stored on microfiche – how do we find the article?
I said to Valerie, “Let’s leave it. I don’t really need the article.”
But Valerie was persistent and persuasive.
A librarian must have noticed how clueless we looked and asked if she could help. We almost hugged her. She found the article and switched on a massive machine. Did we have a USB as they don’t provide paper copies?
I was aghast. What would I be doing with a USB? Valerie, in the meantime, dived deep into her handbag and pulled one out. What a life saver! The librarian inserted it into the machine and copied the article for us. It was two minutes to closing time as we scurried our way out of the labyrinth with our prize.
I never did ask Valerie why she happened to have a USB in her handbag.