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Ned Kelly

Ned Kelly


Who is Ned Kelly?

Edward ‘Ned’ Kelly (c. 1854–1880) was the leader of an outlaw gang that created mayhem in north-eastern Victoria. During his final shoot-out with police, Kelly wore a crudely made set of steel armour. The police didn’t know if they were shooting a man or a monster. A shot in his exposed leg brought Kelly down. He was captured, tried by law and sentenced to death for murder. For more than a century, people have debated whether he was a violent criminal or a hero.

Ned was a master at self-promotion and spin, and he used the media to further his cause. After robbing the bank at Jerilderie, New South Wales, he dictated a letter to be printed in the newspaper. In it, he uses colourful language to defend his actions, including the killing of police. He demands justice for his family and other poor Irish settlers.

Fascination with the story of Ned Kelly has a great deal to do with his body armour, worn during the final siege. Images of the armour are everywhere: on screen, in art, in advertising and tattooed onto skin. Together, the armour and the Jerilderie letter help us understand both the man and the myth.


What went wrong between Ned Kelly and the police?

The Kelly family was typical of many Irish immigrants of their time. A new law in 1862 allowed them to rent a small plot of land to farm near Greta in north-eastern Victoria. But the land was nowhere near as fertile as similar-sized plots in Ireland. The farmers struggled, and some felt they’d been set up to fail.

Ned Kelly had run-ins with the police from a young age. The extended Kelly family were skilled livestock thieves. Ned was a regular suspect when crimes were committed in the area. He was hauled before the courts many times on charges of theft, assault, robbery and drunkenness.

The Irish were discriminated against by the English in Ireland, and this continued in the Australian colonies. Many of lawmakers and landowners that the Kellys had dealings with were English. It is not unsurprising that Ned resented their authority. Ned’s opinion of the police, some of whom were Irish, was personal. He respected the policemen who treated him kindly but held grudges against those who did not. These grudges turned deadly.

In 1878, the Kelly gang ambushed four policemen in the bush at Stringybark Creek. Constable Thomas McIntyre managed to escape. Sergeant Michael Kennedy, Constable Michael Scanlan and Constable Thomas Lonigan were murdered.


Why do we still talk about Ned Kelly?

Ned Kelly’s story has had a huge impact on aspects of Australian identity. What it means to be ‘Australian’ fascinates many historians, writers and artists.

Australia was first established as a penal colony on Aboriginal land. Ned’s father was a convict, and Ned grew up in an environment steeped with a general sense of stick-it-to-the-man. This was fertile ground for the birth of an Australian antihero.

Antiheroes are figures – sometimes real, sometimes not – who are considered heroes despite major character flaws. Anglo-European examples include England’s Robin Hood and America’s Jesse James. In Asia, China’s Song Jiang, Japan’s Ishikawa Goemon and India’s Parashuram are examples of antiheroes. In the Marvel universe, Thor’s brother Loki is an antihero.

Ned Kelly’s story is one of the threads woven into the complex fabric that is Australian identity. The fact that so many people still either celebrate or disapprove of Ned is evidence that the conflicts around national identity in Kelly’s lifetime continue today.


Why is Ned Kelly’s armour in the Library?

No-one is certain of exactly how the Kelly gang’s armour was made. Parts are made from farm machinery, which was most likely stolen. Many people believe blacksmiths in the Beechworth area forged the armour. They may have been sympathetic to the Kelly gang and wanted them to have an advantage over the police.

In 1892, the museum asked to borrow Ned Kelly’s armour for display in the Exhibition Building in Carlton Gardens. The police replied that they didn’t have Ned’s armour, but the museum could borrow one of the other sets. It borrowed the set believed to have been made for Kelly gang member Steve Hart. The museum put it on display until 1964, when an assistant director asked: ‘Why should we revere a convicted murderer?’. The armour was then transferred to the Library’s collection.

Curator Allison Holland researched the history of the Kelly gang armour in 2001. Examining photographic evidence and the results of material analysis, she discovered that the set held by the Library and believed to be Steve Hart’s was, in fact, Ned’s.


Case label

Unknown maker

Armour worn by Ned Kelly at the Glenrowan siege on 28 June 1880

Steel, 44 kg

Right shoulder plate purchased by the library with funds from the Sundberg Bequest and the Department of Communications, Information Technology and the Arts, 2001


RSAF ENFIELD, manufacturer

Snider-Enfield 0.577-calibre long rifle belonging to Ned Kelly before 1880

Metal and wood


Unknown maker

Boot worn by Ned Kelly c. 1870–80

Leather, iron and wood

On loan to State Library Victoria from the descendants of the late Jesse Dowsett


The Jerilderie Letter

After robbing the bank at Jerilderie, New South Wales, Ned Kelly dictated a letter to be printed in the newspaper. In it, he uses colourful language to defend his actions, including the killing of police. He demands justice for his family and other poor Irish settlers.

Edward ‘Ned’ KELLY

(c. 1854–1880)

Letter, known as the Jerilderie letter

February 1879

56-page manuscript by Joe Byrne’s hand

Gift of Bronwyn Binns, 2000

MS 13361


This is the document

given to me by Ned

Kelly when the Bank

at Jerilderie was stuck-up

in Feb 1879


[Page 1]

Dear Sir

I wish to acquaint you with

some of the occurrences of the present

past and future In or about the

spring of 1870 the ground was

very soft a hawker named Mr Gould

got his waggon bogged between Greta

and my mother’s house on the eleven

mile creek, the ground was that rotten

it would bog a duck in places so

Mr Gould had abandon his waggon

for fear of loosing his horses in the

spewy ground. he was stopping at

my Mother’s awaiting finer or dryer

weather Mr McCormack and his

wife. hawkers also, were camped

in Greta the mosquitoes were

very bad which they generally are

in a wet spring and to help them


[Page 2]

Mr John had a horse called Ruita

Cruta, although a gelding was as

clever as old Wombat or any other

Stallion at running horses away

and taking them on his beat

which was from Greta swamp

to the seven mile creek conse-

quently he enticed McCormacks

horse away from Greta. Mr

Gould was up early feeding his horses

heard a bell and seen McCormack

horse for he knew the horse well

he sent his boy to take him back

to Greta. When McCormack’s got

the horse they came straight out

to Goold and accused him of

working the horse; this was false

and Goold was amazed at the

idea I could not help laughing

to hear Mrs McCormack


[Page 3]

accusing him of using the horse

after him being so kind as to send

his boy to take him from the Ruta

Cruta and take him back to them.

I pleaded Goulds innocence and

Mrs McCormack turned on me

and accused me of bringing the

horse from Greta to Goolds waggon

to pull him out of the bog I did

not say much to the woman as

my Mother was present but that

same day me and my uncle

was cutting calves Gould wrapped

up a note and a pair of the

calves testicles and gave them

to me to give them to Mrs Mc

Cormack. I did not see her

and I gave the parcel to a boy

to give to her when she would

come instead of giving it


[Page 4]

to her he gave it to her husband

consequently McCormack said

he would summons me I told

him neither me or Gould used

their horse. he said I was a liar

& he could welt me or any of my

breed I was about 14 years of age

but accepted the challenge and

dismounting when Mrs McCormack

struck my horse in the flank with

a bullock’s shin it jumped

forward and my fist came in

collision with McCormack’s nose

and caused him to loose his equil-

librium and fall postrate I tied

up my horse to finish the battle

but McCormack got up and ran

to the Police camp. Constable

Hall asked me what the row

was about I told him they


[Page 5]

accused me and Gould of

using their horse and I hit him

and I would do the same to him

if he challenged me McCormack

pulled me and swore their lies

against me I was sentenced to

three months for hitting him and

three months for the parcel and

bound to keep the peace for 12

months. Mrs McCormack gave

good substantial evidence as

she is well acquainted with

that place called Tasmania

better known as the Dervon

or Vandiemansl and and

McCormack being a Policeman

over the convicts and women

being scarce released her from

that land of bondage and

tyranny, and they came to


[Page 6]

Victoria and are at present residents

of Greta and on the 29th of

March I was released from prison

and came home Wild Wright came

to the Eleven Mile to see Mr Gunn

stopped all night and lost his

mare both him and me looked

all day for her and could not

get her Wright who was a stranger

to me was in a hurry to get back

to Mansfield and I gave him

another mare and he told me

if I found his mare to keep her

until he brought mine back

I was going to Wangaratta

and seen the mare I caught

her and took her with me

all the Police and Detective

Berrill seen her as Martains

girls used to ride her about


[Page 7]

the town during several days that I

stopped at Petre Martains Star Hotel

in Wangaratta, She was a chestnut

mare white face docked tail very re-

markable branded M as plain as the

hands on a town clock. The property

of a Telegraph Master in Mansfield

he lost her on the 6th gazetted her on

the 12th of March and I was a prisoner

in Beechworth Gaol until the 29 of

March therefore I could not have

Stole the mare. I was riding the

mare through Greta Constable

Hall came to me and said he

wanted me to sign some papers

that I did not sign at Beechworth

concerning my bail bonds I thought

it was the truth he said the papers

was at the Barracks and I had no

idea he wanted to arrest me or I


[Page 8]

would have quietly rode away in-

stead of going to the Barracks. I

was getting off when Hall caught

hold of me and thought to throw me

but made a mistake and came on

the broad of his back himself in the

dust the mare galloped away. and in-

stead of me putting my foot on Halls

neck and taking his revolver and

putting him in the lock up. I tried to

catch the mare, Hall got up and snapped

three or four caps at me and would

have shot me but the Colts patent

refused. This is well known in Greta

Hall never told me he wanted to arrest me

until after he tried to shoot me when

I heard the caps snapping I stood

until Hall came close he had me

covered and was shaking with fear

and I knew he would pull the


[Page 9]

trigger before he would be game to put

his hand on me so I duped, and jumped

at him caught the revolver with one

hand and Hall by the collar with

the other. I dare not strike him or

my sureties would loose the bond money

I used to trip him and let him take a mouth-

ful of dust now and again as he was as

helpless as a big guano after leaving a dead

bullock or a horse. I kept throwing him in

the dust until I got him across the street

the very spot where Mrs. O,Briens Hotel

stands now the cellar was just dug then

there was some brush fencing where the

post and rail was taking down and

on this I threw big cowardly Hall on

his belly I straddled him and rooted

both spurs onto his thighs he roared like

a big calf attacked by dogs and shifted

several yards of the fence I got his


[Page 10]

hands at the back of his neck and trid to

make him let the revolver go but he stuck

to it like grim death to a dead volunteer

he called for assistance to a man named

Cohen and Barnett, Lewis, Thompson, Jewitt

two blacksmiths who was looking on

I dare not strike any of them as I was

bound to keep the peace or I could have

spread those curs like dung in a paddock

they got ropes tied my hands and feet

and Hall beat me over the head with

his six chambered colts revolver nine

stitches were put in some of the cuts

by Dr Hastings And when Wild Wright

and my mother came they could trace us

across the street by the blood in the dust

and which spoiled the lustre of the paint

on the gate-post of the Barracks Hall sent

for more Police and Doctor Hastings.

Next morning I was handcuffed


[Page 11]

a rope tied from them to my legs

and to the seat of the cart and

taken to Wangaratta. Hall was fright-

ened I would throw him out of the

cart so he tied me whilst Constable

Arthur laughed at his cowardice for

it was he who escorted me and Hall

to Wangaratta. I was tried and com-

mitted as Hall swore I claimed the

mare the Doctor died or he would

have proved Hall a perjurer Hall has

been tried several times for perjury

but got clear. as this is no crime in

the Police force it is a credit to a Police-

man to convict an innocent man

but any muff can pot a guilty one

Halls character is well known about

El Dorado and Snowy Creek and

Hall was considerably in debt to

Mr. L. O.Brien and as he was going


[Page 12]

to leave Greta Mr. O.Brien seen no

other chance of getting his money so there

was a subscription collected for Hall

and with the aid of this money he got

James Murdock who was recently hung

in Wagga Wagga to give false evidence

against me but I was aquitted on

the charge of horsestealing and on

Hall and Murdocks evidence

I was found guilty of receiving and

got 3 years experience in Beechworth

Pentridge’s dungeons. this is the only

charge ever proved against me

Therefore I can say I never was

convicted of horse or cattle stealing.

My Brother Dan was never charged

with assaulting a woman but he

was sentenced to three months

without the option of a fine and

one month and two pound fine


[Page 13]

for damaging property by Mr Butler P.M.

a sentence that there is no law to uphold

therefore the minister of Justice neglected

his duty in that case, but there never was

such a thing as Justice in the English

laws but any amount of injustice

to be had. Out of over thirty head of

the very best horses the land could produce

I could only find one when I got my

liberty. Constable Flood stole and sold

the most of them to the navvies on

the railway line one bay cob he

stole and sold four different times

the line was completed and the men

all gone when I came out and

Flood was shifted to Oxley. he carried

on the same game there all the stray

horses that was any time without

an owner and not in the Police

Gazette Flood used to claim


[Page 14]

He was doing a good trade at Oxley

until Mr Brown of the Laceby Station

got him shifted as he was always run-

ning his horses about. Flood is different

to Sergeant Steel, Strachan, Hall

and the most of Police a they have got

to hire cads and if they fail the Police

are quite helpless. But Flood can

make a cheque single-handed. he is

the greatest horsestealer with the

exception of myself and George King

I know of. I never worked on a farm

a horse and saddle was never traced

to me after leaving employment

since February 1873 I worked as a

faller at Mr J. Saunders and R

Rules sawmills then for Heach

and Dockendorf I never worked

for less than two pound ten a

week since I left Pentridge


[Page 15]

and in 1875 or 1876 I was overseer for

Saunders and Rule. Bourke’s water-holes

sawmills in Victoria since then I was

on the King River, during my stay there

I ran in a wild bull which I gave

to Lydicher a farmer he sold him

to Carr a Publican and Butcher

who killed him for beef, sometime

afterwards I was blamed for stealing

this bull from James Whitty Boggy Creek

I asked Whitty Oxley racecourse why

he blamed me for stealing his bull

he said he had found his bull and

never blamed me but his son-in-law

Farrell told him he heard I sold

the bull to Carr not long afterwards

I heard again I was blamed for

stealing a mob of calves from Whitty

and Farrell which I knew nothing

about. I began to think they wanted


[Page 16]

me to give them something to talk

about. Therefore I started wholesale

and retail horse and cattle dealing.

Whitty and Burns not being satisfied

with all the picked land on the Boggy

Creek and King River and the run

of their stock on the certificate ground

free and no one interfering with

them paid heavy rent to the banks

for all the open ground so as a poor

man could keep no stock, and impound-

ded every beast they could get, even off

Government roads. If a poor man

happened to leave his horse or bit of

a poddy calf outside his paddock

they would be impounded. I have

known over 60 head of horses impoun-

ded in one day by Whitty and

Burns all belonging to poor farmers

they would have to leave their


[Page 17]

ploughing or harvest or other employment

to go to Oxley. when they would get

there perhaps not have money enough

to release them and have to give a

bill of sale or borrow the money which

is no easy matter. And along with all

this sort of work, Farrell the Policeman

stole a horse from George King. And

had him in Whitty and Farrells

Paddocks until he left the force. And

all this was the cause of me and

my step-father George King taking

their horses and selling them to

Baumgarten and Kennedy. the pick

of them was taken to a good market

and the culls were kept in Petersons pad-

dock and their brands altered by me

two was sold to Kennedy and the rest

to Baumgarten who were strangers to

me and I believe honest men.


[Page 18]

They paid me full value for the horses

and could not have known they were

stolen. no person had anything to do

with the stealing and selling of the horses

but me and George King. William

Cooke who was convicted for Whittys horses

was innocent he was not in my com-

pany at Petersons. But it is not the

place of the Police to convict guilty men

as it is by them they get their living

had the right parties been convicted

it would have been a bad job for

the Police as Berry would have

sacked a great many of them

only I came to their aid and

kept them in their bilits and good

employment and got them double

pay and yet the ungrateful articles

convicted my mother and an infant

my brother-in-law and another man


[Page 19]

who was innocent and still annoy

my brothers and sisters and the ignorant

unicorns even threaten to shoot myself

But as soon as I am dead they will be

heels up in the muroo. there will be

no more police required they will be

sacked and supplanted by soldiers

on low pay in the towns and special

constables made of some of the farmers

to make up for this double pay and

expence. It will pay Government

to give those people who are suffering

innocence, justice and liberty. if

not I will be compelled to show

some colonial stratagem which

will open the eyes of not only the

Victorian Police and inhabitants

but also the whole British army

and now doubt they will acknowledge

their hounds were barking at the


[Page 20]

wrong stump. And that Fitzpatrick

will be the cause of greater slaughter

to the Union Jack than Saint Patrick

was to the snakes and toads in

Ireland. The Queen of England was as

guilty as Baumgarten and Kennedy

Williamson and Skillion of what they

were convicted for When the horses

were found on the Murray River

I wrote a letter to Mr Swanhill of

Lake Rowan to acquaint the Auction-

eer and to advertize my horses for sale

I brought some of them to that place but

did not sell I sold some of them in

Benalla Melbourne and other

places and left the colony and

became a rambling gambler

soon after I left there was a

warrant for me and the Police

searched the place and watched


[Page 21]

night and day for two or three weeks

and when they could not snare me

they got a warrant against my

brother Dan And on the 15 of April

Fitzpatrick came to the Eleven Mile

Creek to arrest him he had some

conversation with a horse dealer

whom he swore was William Skillion

this man was not called in

Beechworth, besides several other

Witnesses, who alone could have

proved Fitzpatricks falsehood

after leaving this man he went

to the house asked was Dan in

Dan came out. I hear previous

to this Fitzpatrick had some con

versation with Williamson on

the hill. he asked Dan to come

to Greta with him as he had

a warrant for him for stealing


[Page 22]

Whitty’s horses Dan said all right

they both went inside Dan was

having something to eat his mother

asked Fitzpatrick what he wanted

Dan for. the trooper said he

had a warrant for him Dan

then asked him to produce

it he said it was only a telegram

sent from Chiltren but Sergeant

Whelan ordered him to releive

Steel at Greta and call and

arrest Dan and take him into

Wangaratta next morning and

get him remanded Dans mother

said Dan need not go without

a warrant unless he liked and

that the trooper had no business

on her premises without some

Authority besides his own word.

The trooper pulled out his


[Page 23]

revolver and said he would blow

her brains out if she interfered.

in the arrest she told him it

was a good job for him Ned was

not there or he would ram the

revolver down his throat Dan

looked out and said Ned is com-

ing now. the trooper being off his

guard looked out and when Dan

got his attention drawn he dropped

the knife and fork which showed

he had no murderous intent

and slapped heeuaus hug on him

took his revolver and kept him

there until Skillion and Ryan

came with horses which Dan

sold that night. The trooper left

and invented some scheme to say

that he got shot which any man

can see is false, he told Dan to


[Page 24]

clear out that Sergeant Steel and Detec-

tive Brown and Strachan would

be there before morning Strachan

had been over the Murray trying

to get up a case against him and

they would convict him if they

caught him as the stock society

offared an enticement for wit-

nesses to swear anything and the

germans over the Murray would

swear to the wrong man as well

as the right, Next day Williamson

and my mother was arrested and

Skillion the day after who was not

there at all at the time of the row

which can be proved by 8 or 9 witnesses

And the Police got great credit and

praise in the papers for arresting the

mother of 12 children one an infant

on her breast and those two quiet


[Page 25]

hard working innocent men who would

not know the difference a revolver

and a saucepan handle and kept

them six months awaiting trial and

then convicted them on the evidence

of the meanest article that ever the

sun shone on it seems that the

jury was well chosen by the Police

as there was a discharged Sergeant

amongst them which is contrary to

law they thought it impossible for a

Policeman to swear a lie but I can

assure them it is by that means

and hiring cads they get promoted

I have heard from a trooper

that he never knew Fitzpatrick

to be one night sober and that he

sold his sister to a chinaman

but he looks a young strapping

rather genteel more fit to be a


[Page 26]

starcher to a laundress than a Policeman.

For to a keen observer he has the wrong

appearance or a manly heart the

deceit and cowardice is too plain

to be seen in the puny cabbage heart-

ed looking face. I heard nothing of

this transaction until very close on

the trial I being then over 400 miles

from Greta when I heard I was

outlawed and a hundred pound

reward for me for shooting at a

trooper in Victoria and a hund-

red pound for any man that could

prove a conviction of horse-stealing

against me so I came back to

Victoria knew I would get no

justice if I gave myself up I

enquired after my brother Dan

and found him digging on Bul-

lock Creek heard how the Polic


[Page 27]

used to be blowing that they would

not ask me to stand they would

shoot me first and then cry sur-

render and how they used to rush

into the house upset all the milk

dishes break tins of eggs empty the

flour out of the bags onto the ground

and even the meat out of the cask

and destroy all the provisions and

shove the girls in front of them into

the rooms like dogs so as if any-

one was there they would shoot the

girls first but they knew well

I was not there or I would have

scattered their blood and brains

like rain I would manure the

Eleven mile with their bloated

carcasses and yet remember there

is not one drop of murderous

blood in my Veins.


[Page 28]

Superintendent Smith used to say

to my sisters, see all the men

all I have out today I will have

as many more tomorrow and we

will blow him into pieces as small

as paper that is in our guns Det-

ective Ward and Constable Hayes

took out their revolvers and threat-

hened to shoot the girls and children

in Mrs Skillions absence the greatest

ruffians and murderers no matter

how deprived would not be guilty

of such a cowardly action, and

this sort of cruelty and disgraceful

and cowardly conduct to my brothers

and sisters who had no protection

coupled with the conviction of

my mother and those men certainly

made my blood boil as I dont think

there is a man born could have


[Page 29]

the patience to suffer it as long as I did

or ever allow his blood to get cold while

such insults as these were unavenged

and yet in every paper that is printed

I am called the blackest and coldest

blooded murderer ever on record.

But if I hear any more of it I will

not exactly show them what cold-

blooded murder is but wholesale

and retail slaughter, something

different to shooting three troopers

in self defence and robbing a

bank. I would have been rather

hot-blooded to throw down my

rifle and let them shoot me and

my innocent brother, they were

not satisfied with frightening

my sisters night and day and

destroying their provisions and

lagging my mother and an infant


[Page 30]

and those innocent men but should

follow me and my brother into

the wilds where he had been quietly

digging neither molesting or inter-

efering with anyone he was making

good wages as the creek is very rich

within half a mile from where I

shot Kennedy. I was not there

long and on the 25 of October

I came on Police tracks between

Tabletop and the bogs. I crossed

them and returning in the evening

I came on a dif-ferent lot of tracks

making for the shingle hut I went

to our camp and told my brother

and his two mates me and

my brother went and found

their camp at the shingle hut

about a mile from my brothers

house, saw they carried long


[Page 31]

firearms and we knew our doom

was sealed if we could not beat

those before the others would come

as I knew the other party of Police

would soon join them and if they

came on us at our camp they

would shoot us down like dogs

at our work as we had only two

guns. we thought it best to try and

bail those up take their firearms

and ammunition and horses

and we could stand a chance

with the rest We approached the

spring as close as we could get to

the camp as the intervening space

being clear ground and no battery

We saw two men at the logs they

got up and one took a double barrel-

ed fowling-piece and fetched a horse

down and hobbled him at the tent


[Page 32]

we thought there were more men in the

tent asleep those being on sentry we

could have shot those two men with-

out speaking but not wishing

to take their lives we waited. Mc

Intyre laid the gun against a

stump and Lonigan sat on the log

I advanced, my brother Dan keep-

in McIntyre covered which he took

to be constable Flood and had he

not obeyed my orders, or attempted

to reach for the gun or draw his

revolver he would have been shot

dead. but when I called on them

to throw up their hands McIntyre

obeyed and Lonigan ran some

six or seven yards to a battery

of logs insted of dropping behind

the one he was sitting on, he

had just got to the logs and put


[Page 33]

his head up to take aim when I

shot him that instant or he would

have shot me as I took him to be

Strachan the man who said he would

not ask me to stand he would

shoot me first like a dog. But it

happened to be Lonigan the man

who in company with Sergeant Whelan

Fitzpatrick and King the Boot maker

and constable O. Day that tried to

put a pair of hand-cuffs on me in

Benalla but could not, and had

to allow McInnis the miller to

put them on, previous to Fitzpatrick

swearing he was shot, I was fined

two pounds for hitting Fitzpatrick

and two pounds for not allowing

five curs like Sergeant Whelan

O. Day Fitzpatrick King and Lonigan

who caught me by the privates


[Page 34]

and would have sent me to Kingdom

come only I was not ready and he

is the man that blowed before he

left Violet Town. if Ned Kelly was to

be shot he was the man would

shoot him and no doubt he would

shoot me even if I threw up my

arms and laid down as he knew

four of them could not arrest me

single-handed not to talk of the

rest of my mates, also either me

or him would have to die, this he

knew well, therefore he had a right to

keep out of my road, Fitzpatrick

is the only one I hit out of the five

in Benalla, this shows my feeling

towards him as he said we were

good friends & even swore it

but he was the biggest enemy I had

in the country with the exception


[Page 35]

of Lonigan and he can be thankful

I was not there when he took a

revolver and threathened to shoot

my mother in her own house it

is not fire three shots and miss him

at a yard and a half I dont think

I would use a revolver to shoot a

man like him when I was within

a yard and a half of him or att-

empt to fire into a house where

my mother brothers and sisters

was. and according to Fitzpatricks

statement all around him a man

that is such a bad shot as to miss

a man three times at a yard and

a half would never attempt to

fire into a house among a house

full of women and children while

I had a pair of arms and bunch

of fives on the end of them


[Page 36]

that never failed to peg out any-

thing they came in contact with

and Fitzpatrick knew the weight

of one of them only too well, as it run

against him once in Benalla. and

cost me two pound odd as he is very

subject to fainting. As soon as I shot

Lonigan he jumped up and stag-

gered some distance from the logs

with his hands raised and then fell

he surrendered but too late I asked

McIntyre who was in the tent he

replied no one. I advanced and

took possession of their two revolvers

and fowling-piece which I loaded

with bullets instead of shot. I asked

McIntyre where his mates was he

said they had gone down the

creek, and he did not expect them

that night he asked me was I


[Page 37]

going to shoot him and his mates. I told

him no. I would shoot no man if he

gave up his arms and leave the force

he said the police all knew Fitzpatrick had

wronged us. And he intended to leave the

force, as he had bad health, and his life

was insured, he told me he intended

going home. And that Kennedy and

Scanlan were out looking for our camp

And also about the other Police he told

me the N.S.W Police had shot a man

for shooting Sergeant Walling I told him

if they did, they had shot the wrong man

And I expect your gang came to do the

same with me he said no they did

not come to shoot me they came to

apprehend me I asked him what

they carried spenceir rifles and breech-

loading fowling pieces and so much

ammunition for as the Police was


[Page 38]

Only supposed to carry one revolver and

6 cartridges in the revolver but they had

eighteen rounds of revolver cartridges

each three dozen for the fowling piece

and twenty one spenceir-rifle cartridges

and God Knows how many they

had away with the rifle this looked

as if they meant not only to shoot

me only to riddle me but I dont

know either Kennedy Scanlan or

him and had nothing against

them, he said he would get them

to give up their arms if I would

not shoot them as I could not

blame them, they had to do their

duty I said I did not blame them

for doing honest duty but I could

not suffer them blowing me to pieces

in my own native land and

they knew Fitzpatrick wronged


[Page 39]

us and why not make it public and

convict him but no they would

rather riddle poor unfortunate creoles.

but they will rue the day ever Fitz-

patrick got among them, Our two

mates came over when they heard the

shot fired but went back again

for fear the Police might come to

our camp while we were all away

and manure bullock flat with

us on our arrival. I stopped at

the logs and Dan went back to

the spring for fear the tropers would

come in that way but I soon heard

them coming up the creek. I told

McIntyre to tell them to give up

their arms he spoke to Kennedy

who was some distance in front

of Scanlan he reached for his

revolver and jumped off, on the off


[Page 40]

side of his horse and got behind a tree

when I called on them to throw up

their arms and Scanlan who carried

the rifle slewed his horse around to

gallop away but the horse would not

go and as quick as thought fired

at me with the rifle without unsling-

ing it and was in the act of firing

again when I had to shoot him

and he fell from his horse. I could

have shot them without speaking but

their lives was no good to me. Mc

Intyre jumped on Kennedys horse

and I allowed him to go as I did

not like to shoot him after he surren-

dered or I would have shot him as

he was between me and Kennedy

therefore I could not shoot

Kennedy without shooting him

first Kennedy kept firing from


[Page 41]

behind the tree my brother Dan advanced

and Kennedy ran I followed him he

stopped behind another tree and

fired again I shot him in the arm-

pit and he dropped his revolver and

ran I fired again with the gun as

he slewed around to surrender I did

not know he had dropped his revolver.

the bullet passed through the right

side of his chest & he could not live

or I would have let him go had they

been my own brothers I could not help

shooting them or else let them shoot me

which they would have done had their

bullets been directed as they intended

them. But as for handcuffing Kennedy

to a tree or cutting his ear off or bru-

tally treating any of them is a false-

hood, if Kennedys ear was cut off

it was not done by me and none


[Page 42]

of my mates was near him after he was

shot I put his cloak over him and left him

as well as I could and were they my

own brothers I could not have been more

sorry for them this cannot be called wil-

ful murder for I was compelled to shoot

them, or lie down and let them shoot

me it would not be wilful murder

if they packed our remains in, shattered

into a mass of animated gore to Mans-

field. They would have got great praise

and credit as well as promotion but

I am reconed a horrid brute because

I had not been cowardly enough to

lie down for them under such trying

circumstances and insults to my

people certainly their wives and

children are to be pitied but they

must remember those men came

into the bush with the intention


[Page 43]

of scattering pieces of me and my

brother all over the bush and yet they

know and acknowledge I have been

wronged and my mother and four

or five men lagged innocent and

is my brothers and sisters and my mother

not to be pitied also who has no

alternative only to put up with the

brutal and cowardly conduct of a

parcel of big ugly fat-necked wombat

headed big bellied magpie legged

narrow hipped splaw-footed sons of Irish

Bailiffs or english landlords which

is better known as Officers of Justice

or Victorian Police who some calls

honest gentlemen but I would

like to know what business an

honest man would have in the

Police as it is an old saying It takes

a rogue to catch a rogue and a


[Page 44]

man that knows nothing about roguery

would never enter the force an take an

oath to arrest brother sister father or

mother if required and to have a

case and conviction if possible.

Any man knows it is possible to

swear a lie and if a policeman

looses a conviction for the sake

of swearing a lie he has broke his

oath therefore he is a perjurer either

ways. A Policeman is a disgrace to his

country, not alone to the mother that

suckled him, in the first place he

is a rogue in his heart but too cowardly

to follow it up without having the force

to disguise it. Next he is traitor to his

country ancestors and religion

as they were all catholics before the

Saxons and Cranmore yoke held

sway since then they were perse-


[Page 45]

cuted massacreed thrown into

martrydom and tortured beyond

the ideas of the present generation

What would people say if they saw a

strapping big lump of an Irishman

shepherding sheep for fifteen bob a week

or tailing turkeys in Tallarook ranges

for a smile from Julia or even

begging his tucker, they would say

he ought to be ashamed of himself

and tar-and-feather him. But

he would be a king to a policeman

who for a lazy loafing cowardly

bilit left the ash corner deserted the

shamrock, the emblem of true

wit and beauty to serve under a

flag and nation that has destroyed

massacreed, and murdered their forefathers by the

greatest of torture as rolling them

down hill in spiked barrels


[Page 46]

pulling their toe and finger nails and on

the wheel. and every torture imaginable

more was transported to Van Diemands

Land to pine their young lives away in

starvation and misery among tyrants

worse than the promised hell itself all

of true blood bone and beauty, that

was not murdered on their own soil,

or had fled to America or other count-

ries to bloom again another day, were

doomed to Port Mcquarie Toweringabbie

and norfolk island and Emu plains

And in those places of tyranny and con-

demnation many a blooming Irish-

man rather than subdue to the Saxon

yoke, Were flogged to death And bravely

died in servile chains but true to

the shamrock and a credit to Paddys

land. What would people say if I

became a policeman and took


[Page 47]

an oath to arrest my brothers and

sisters & relations and convict

them by fair or foul means after

the conviction of my mother and

the persecutions and insults offered to

myself and people Would they say

I was a decent gentleman. And yet

a policeman is still in worse and

guilty of meaner actions than that

The Queen must surely be proud of

such herioc men as the Police

and Irish soldiers as It takes eight

or eleven of the biggest mud crushers

in Melbourne to take one poor

little half starved larrakin to a

watch house. I have seen as many

as eleven, big & ugly enough to lift

Mount Macedon out of a crab hole

more like the species of a baboon

or Guerilla than a man.


[Page 48]

actually come into a court house

and swear they could not arrest one

eight stone larrakin and them armed

with battens and neddies without

some civilians assistance and

some of them going to the hospital

from the affects of hits from the

fists of the larrakin and the

Magistrate would send the poor

little Larrakin into a dungeon

for being a better man than such

a parcel of armed curs. What would

England do if America declared war

and hoisted a green flag as its all

Irishmen that has got command of her

armies forts and batteries even her

very life guards and beef tasters are

Irish would they not slew around

and fight her with their own arms

for the sake of the colour they dare not wear


[Page 49]

for years. and to reinstate it and rise

old Erins isle once more, from the pressure

and tyrannism of the English yoke, which

has kept it in poverty and starvation.

and caused them to wear the enemys

coats. What else can England expect.

Is there not big fat-necked Unicorns

enough paid to torment and drive

me to do thing which I dont wish to

do, without the public assisting them

I have never interefered with any

person unless they deserved it. And

yet there are civilians who take

firearms against me, for what

reason I do not know, unless they

want me to turn on them and exter-

minate them without medicine. I

shall be compelled to make an exam-

ple of some of them if they cannot

find no other employment


[Page 50]

If I had robbed and plundered ravished

and murdered everything I met young

and old, rich and poor. the public

could not do any more than take firearms

and assisting the police as they have

done, but by the light that shines

pegged on an ant-bed with their

bellies opened their fat taken out render-

ed and poured down their throat

boiling hot will be fool to what

pleasure I will give some of them

and any person aiding or harbouring

or assisting the Police in any way

whatever or employing any person

whom they know to be a detective

or cad or those who would be

so deprived as to take blood

money will be Outlawed and

declared unfit to be allowed

human buriel their property


[Page 51]

either consumed or confiscated

and them theirs and all belonging

to them exterminated off the face of

the earth, the enemy I cannot catch

myself I shall give a payable reward

for, I would like to know who put

that article that reminds me of a

poodle dog half clipped in the lion

fashon called Brooke. E. Smith

Superintendent of Police he knows

as much about commanding

Police as Captain Standish does

about mustering mosquitoes and

boiling them down for their fat

on the back blocks of the Lachlan

for he has a head like a turnip

a stiff neck as big as his shoulders

narrow hipped and pointed towards

the feet like a vine stake And if

there is any one to be called a murderer


[Page 52]

Regarding Kennedy, Scanlan and

Lonigan it is that misplaced poodle

he gets as much pay as a dozen good

troopers, if there is any good in them,

And what does he do for it he cannot

look behind him without turning

his whole frame. it takes three or

four police to keep sentry while he

sleeps in Wangaratta, for fear of body

snatchers do they think he is a

superior animal to the men that

has to guard him if so why not

send the men that gets big pay and

reconed superior to the common

police after me and you shall soon

save the country of high salaries

to men that is fit for nothing else

but getting better men than him-

self shot and sending orphan

children to the industrial school


[Page 53]

to make prostitutes and cads of

them for the Detectives and other evil

disposed persons Send the high paid

and men that received big salaries

for years in a gang by themselves

after me As it makes no difference

to them but it will give them a chance

of showing whether they are worth more

pay than a common trooper or not

And I think the Public will soon find

they are only in the road of good men

and obtaining money under false

pretences, I do not call McIntyre

a coward for I reckon he is as

game a man as wears the jacket

as he had the presence of mind to know

his position, directly as he was spoken

to, and only foolishness to disobey, it

was cowardice that made Lonigan

and the others fight it is only


[Page 54]

foolhardiness to disobey an outlaw

as any Policeman or other man

who do not throw up their arms directly

as I call on them knows the con-

sequence which is a speedy dispatch

to Kingdom Come, I wish those

men who joined the stock protection

society to withdraw their money and

give it and as much more to the widows

and orphans and poor of Greta district

wher I spent and will again spend many

a happy day fearless free and bold,

as it only aids the police to procure

false witnesses and go whacks with

men to steal horses and lag innocent

men it would suit them far better

to subscribe a sum and give

it to the poor of their district

and there is no fear of anyone

stealing their property for no man


[Page 55]

could steal their horses without

the knowledge of the poor if any man

was mean enough to steal their property

the poor would rise out to a man

and find them if they were on the face

of the earth it will always pay a

rich man to be liberal with the poor

and make as little enemies as he can

as he shall find if the poor is on his

side he shall loose nothing by it.

If they depend in the police they shall be

drove to destruction, As they cannot

and will not protect them if duffing

and bushranging were abolished the

police would have to cadge for their

living I speak from experience as I have

sold horses and cattle innumerable

and yet eight head of the culls is all

ever was found. I never was interefered

with whilst I kept up this successful


[Page 56]

trade. I give fair warning to all those

who has reason to fear me to sell out and give

£10 out of every hundred towards the widow

and orphan fund and do not attempt to

reside in Victoria but as short a time as

possible after reading this notice, neglect this

and abide by the consequences, which shall

be worse than the rust in the wheat in

Victoria or the druth of a dry season to

the grasshoppers in New South Wales I do not

wish to give the order full force without

giving timely warning, but I am a widows son

outlawed and my orders must be obeyed.