Melbourne Daily Telegraph (7)
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THE GANG’S ARMOUR AND AMMUNITION
All armour and other articles belonging to the outlaws were brought into the barracks to-day, and great numbers of people assembled to view them.The horses they had were also examined to discover brands but no clue as to their ownership has yet been found, with the exception of Ned Kelly’s mare which belongs to Mr Ryan of the Major Plains.
As showing the resources and determination of the outlaws to commit the most horrible crimes when necessary compelled them there was in the barracks to-day a nail-can with a plug in the top, filled with blasting powder and two large coils of fuse which had been found on one of the packhorses.Some weeks ago the police received intermation that a large quantity of blasting powder and dynamite had been obtained by the Kelly’s relatives and at the same time several mould boards: ploughs and steel plating were stolen in the neighbourhood of Greta.It was thought at the time that these articles were taken with a view of further fortifying their headquarters, which were supposed to be somewhere in the King River Ranges in order to stand a … siege when discovered … the powder was for the purpose of blowing up the police and if the worst came to the worst ????? were however, incorrect ? the breast plates and helmets of the outlaws were formed out of mould boards beaten out and shaped round to form body and head closely. A quantity of the armour was found in the stable of Jones’s hotel, where at had evidently been hidden by the outlaws and the weight may be manned when it was almost impossible for Ned Kelly to set on his horse with the armour on.
The ? of arms and ammunition they had, too, was something enormous. It was all brought into the barracks and besides ? doubled barrelled guns, and revolvers, there were old pistols of a description long since out of use. The most interesting a article however, was the rifle which Ned Kelly constantly carried. It is a strong weapons capable of being fired with the greatest ease and rapidity and of shooting at long distances. According to Kelly’s account, he could hit anything the site of a man with it 600 yards away. Five shots had been fired from it during the night but one chamber was still loaded and this the last shot in Ned Kelly’s side, intended, no doubt to put an end to the life of some policeman.
I fired myself today into the ground in the Benalla police barracks with the very party around who had been in the thick of the fight, and who one and all had escaped unhurt. The first party who went out from Benalla on the morning of the memorable 28th, and made the preliminary attack on Jones’s hotel, was selected by Superintendent Hare, and consisted of Senior constable Kelly in command, and Troopers Charles Arthur, Kirkham, Barry, Canny, Gascoigne and Phillips.These were the men, who, I am told, first opened the ball, and those who afterwards were in the very thick of the fight were Sergeant Steele, Trooper Montifort and others who galloped down from Wangaratta immediately the news came of outlaws being abroad.
'THREATS AGAINST CURNOW AND OTHERS '
By far the greatest credit is dueto Mr Curnow, the school teacher of Glenrowan, who stopped the pilot engine by holding up a red light and who being suspected of friendliness towards the gang, was previously allowed to leave the house by Ned Kelly. Curnow’s life is not safe a moment here. The most bitter and horrible threats are used against him, and also against Constable Bracken, who escaped from the hotel; and Dowsett, the railway guard, who is acknowledged by officers and men to have behaved most pluckily in the fight and capture of Ned Kelly. Dowsett has received a warning that his life will be taken if he remains in the district, and he, therefore, applied to-day to be removed and Bracken is protected every night at Glenrowan by extra policemen.
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