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  • Writer's pictureValentine Smith APM

MEDIA RELEASE – Charlie Blevin

A Native American buried in the Australian bush – how did he get there?

An Australian based international missing person cold case investigation company has opened up an investigation into the historic circumstances surrounding the grave of Charlie Blevin. Charlie was reportedly a Native American who, it is believed spent his last days deep in wilderness country in the rugged mountains of Victoria, in eastern Australia.

The isolated gravesite, believed to be from the mid to late 1800’s, is in an area of steep heavy undergrowth and tall forest. It was once home to a tiny group of tough prospectors who eked out a living reef and sluice mining for gold on the Gibbo River above Omeo, about four hundred and fifty miles north east of Melbourne.

How did a Native American come to be buried in the Australian bush in the 1800’s? Where did he come from? Does, he have any living relatives in the United States today?

These are the questions being asked by (your news channel) and the team of investigative researchers specialising in missing person cold cases.

Valentine Smith, CEO and founder of MiPerNet, spends as much time as he can in the Australian bush. Mostly he is working on missing person cases yet and other times he is just chilling out. A couple of years ago he came across a heritage cairn in heavy bush country deep in the mountains of Victoria, Australia. The cairn bears six names, with one of them being, ‘Charlie Blevin – an American Red Indian’. Smith is not only a bit of a bushman, he also has a strong interest in American history, as well as an inquisitive mind honed to perfection after almost forty years as an Australian Police Detective.

Valentine Smith APM

“When I saw the inscription, I became instantly curious”, Smith said. “How is it that a Native American is in the Australian bush in the mid 1800’s mining for gold? Does his family know where he is?”

America in the mid 1800’s was boiling with expansion and western migration, interrupted by an apocalyptic civil war. The Native Americans would have been struggling just to survive.

How and why did a Native American get to Australia is the question being asked by anyone who hears about this intriguing case?

Very little is known about the name Charlie Blevin, other than he is reported to have been a native American, with the narrative shared amongst one or two old-timers in the mountains who refer to him as ‘Old Indian Charlie’ or ‘Old Mister Blevin’.

“The point is this,” Smith said, “We don’t even know if Charlie was his real name or if the spelling of Blevin is correct. The bottom line is that without records he is just a tad more than another mountain legend.”

What Valentine Smith and his close-knit team of specialists do know is that the surname Blevin or especially Blevins is relatively common in the Cherokee community and that many Cherokee were skilled when it came to reef and sluice mining for gold. With experience gained on their ancestral lands in

Georgia and later as forty-niners in the Californian gold rush it was well timed at least for one of them to have trekked down-under to Australia in the 1850’s.

A study of available Australian incoming passenger records in the 1800’s does reveal one or two entries that are interesting, but there is not enough detail to even reach a modicum of probability that they are connected to the Charlie Blevin believed to be buried in the mountains. Much more needs to be known, especially from the U.S before this fascinating jig-saw puzzle of the history of an almost unknown man can be completed.

Brett Lee - Local Historian

In November this year Smith and Bob Grieve, MiPerNet Chief Operating Officer, spent a week in the mountains searching for anything that would help them better connect with the world of Charlie Blevin, circa 1850 to 1900. During that expedition they met with Brett Lee, one of the last of the old-time mountain bushmen still living on the edge of the Great Alpine National Wilderness Park. “We don’t know how long ‘Old Mr Blevin’ was in these mountains, other than he probably died in the 1880’s”, Mr. Lee said. “Given that he was always referred to as ‘Old Mr Blevin, there is a good chance he was here in the first Victorian rush of 1851”.

MiPerNet is the company name for (Missing Persons Network) and is comprised of a group of (some retired) senior investigators, forensic scientists and other interested specialists. All have an interest in missing person cold cases, including those cases involving suspected or known abduction/homicides.

The Charlie Blevin case is a difficult investigative exercise. Mipernet is using this case to trial its investigative and communication network to back-track from the probable location of a known deceased person to ultimately identifying family and understanding the journey taken.

MiPerNet supported by your readers, listeners and viewers is throwing out a call to America, ‘if you think you might know the identity of Charlie Blevin contact us at: or

“We can put together his likely life here in Australia, but there is a big gap before that”, Smith said. “It would be nice to re-connect this man, whoever he is, with the spirits of his family, even it is just in their thoughts”.

MiPerNet has produced a 12 minute background video on where Charlie Blevin lived and worked:

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