Friends of St Kilda Cemetery

The Friends of St Kilda Cemetery are a not-for-profit community group working actively with Southern Metropolitan Cemeteries Trust, the administrators of St Kilda Cemetery.

Our Logo

The Friends logo is derived from the female figure that forms part of the impressive Robb monument, located to the left upon entering the cemetery from Dandenong Road.

An inscription on the pedestal of the monument refers to Doleen Maude La Barte, the only daughter of W J and E M Robb who was murdered by her husband, Major Thomas Butler La Barte on 17 December 1920 at their home at Moss Vale, New South Wales.

The Argus newspaper of 20 December 1920 told the tragic story:

Details of the shooting of the wife of Major Thomas Butler La Barte, the shooting of Constable Frederick William Mitchell and the arrest of Major La Barte near Mossvale on Friday night give a story of grim tragedy. Major La Barte is the son of the Rev. T. La Barte, formerly of Brighton. Major La Barte, who was educated at the Brighton Grammar School, is 34 years of age. He served with distinction in France in the Royal Field Artillery, gaining the M.C. Mrs La Barte was well known in Melbourne. She was the only daughter of Mr. W. J. Robb, and was 27 years of age.

 Major La Barte was in Mossvale on Friday, and, according to the police account, was drinking heavily. Not long after his return home at about 6 o’clock, the cook at the house was summonsed by her mistress’s bell. When the cook got to Mrs. La Barte’s bedroom she saw Major La Barte holding his wife by the wrist. Mrs. La Barte cried out “Oh, he’s shooting me!” Two reports from a revolver followed, and Mrs. La Barte sank down, shot in the head and chest. The neighbours telephoned to the police station at Mossvale, about two miles distant.

Constable Mitchell left for La Barte’s on a motor-cycle, and was followed by Sergeant Mackie, Mounted-constable Finch and Constable Eadie. Constable Mitchell entered the house at the front, when shots were heard, and Mitchell fell. He must have died instantly.

When darkness came on, Constable Eadie, who had an electric torch, climbed through the window of the maid’s room, while the other constables fired at the adjoining windows. Eadie walked into the living room, and found Major La Barte crouched beside the table, with a gun in one hand. With a leap Eadie reached La Barte, gripped him by the neck, and warded off the gun. While they were struggling other constables rushed in. La Barte was disarmed, and taken into custody.

After reaching the police station, Major La Barte spoke of having pains in his head, but said nothing further. The funeral of Constable Mitchell was largely attended. He left a young widow, but no children.

Did you know - the remains of three victims from the fever ship “Glen Huntly” were removed from Point Ormond and reburied in St Kilda Cemetery in 1898.

Did you know - that Major General Sir John Hoad, the Australian Army’s second Chief of the General Staff, started his working career as a teacher. His last teaching position was at Brighton Road State School no.1479, St Kilda.

Did you know - that on 27 August 1890 in the St Kilda Cemetery a memorial was unveiled to honour the early pioneers who had come out in the ship ‘Glen Huntly’.


  • St Kilda Cemetery
    Dandenong Road St Kilda East


Opening Hours

Daylight Savings 8.00am - 8.00pm
Normal Hours 8.00am - 6.00pm

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