1["News and Notes", The West Australian, Saturday 11 November 1911, pages 10-11]
Chief Steward and Baker at Loggerheads.
There was a considerable attendance of the public at the Fremantle Police Court yesterday to listen to the evidence in a case in which Frank W. Johnson, chief steward of the s.s. Koombana, was charged with having used abusive and insulting language towards Edwin Albrecht. Mr. W. E. Solomon represented the complainant, Albrecht, and Mr. F. G. Unmack appeared for the defendant. In his evidence the complainant said he had acted as baker on the Koombana on her last voyage. While the steamer was on the passage from Shark's Bay to Geraldton on Monday last the chief steward came into the bakehouse, and without any provocation on witness's part used certain insulting language towards him, broke a loaf of bread on him, and caught hold of his shirt and tore it. Cross-examined, the witness, who gave his evidence with extreme volubility, said he was not aware that complaints had been constantly made about his bread. He was a competent baker, and a member of the Bakers' Union. Shown two pieces of bread by Mr. Unmack, witness acknowledged them as sample of his baking. "Fine stuff, aren't they?" said Mr. Unmack. "If the chief steward broke one of your loaves on you he must have had some trouble in doing it." (Laughter.) Corroborative evidence was given by William Geeves, who said he had worked his passage from Derby on the Koombana. Johnson, in the witness-box, admitted that, being irritated at the numerous complaints he had received about complainant's bread, he had called the latter "a German cow," but not the much more virulent expressions alleged in the complaint. Further evidence was given by William J. Barry, lately chief cook, and Bert Stanley, second steward on the Koombana. The R.M. dismissed the complaint, allowing no costs to either side.