The Last of the Bushrangers Chapter 10 page 4
The Last of the Bushrangers by Sup Hare
Aaron Still Zealous
No sooner did he get within sight of his house than he said, "You can't go wrong; there is the house. I will return, as I don't like leaving the men there alone." I saw he was just as zealous as ever. I thought all this zeal might have been put on to deceive me, but I listened to his footsteps making back as fast as he could. I thought after he had let me go he would probably return to his hut for a cup of tea, as the night was bitterly cold, and he was dressed as usual, with a white shirt, trousers, and boots I sat there fully half an hour, but I heard no sign of his returning. I went to the hut, picked Ward and my horse, and rode back to Beechworth, telling Ward I was convinced that the men at Sherritt's house were not working as they should, and that I had decided I would remove them and send others in their place as soon as I could arrange to do so. Exactly at that time on the following Saturday Aaron was shot, and two of the outlaws were guarding his place for some hours afterwards.
Aaron Sherritt’s Doom
On Saturday evening, the 26th June, about nine o'clock , a man named Antone Wicks, a German, who lived about a quarter of a mile from Aaron Sherritt's house, was stuck up by Joe Byrne and Dan Kelly. He was handcuffed by the outlaws, and made to accompany them to Sherritt's house. He was told to call Aaron out, and say he had lost his way, and ask him to put him on the road, as it was quite dark. When the three arrived at Aaron's house Wicks knocked at the door; Aaron said, "Who is there?" The German replied, “It is Antone Wicks, he has lost his way." Aaron opened the door, and Wicks said, "Come and show me the way." Aaron said, "Who is that?" at the same moment stepping out of his door. Joe Byrne jumped forward and fired at him. He retreated to the middle of the room, and Byrne stood in the doorway and fired a second shot, and Aaron dropped down dead without saying a word. It is commonly believed that Ned Kelly was present at the shooting of Sherritt, but Wicks stated that only Byrne and Dan Kelly were there, they kept him handcuffed all the while they remanded at Sherritt's house.
It might be as well to explain why they took Wicks up to Aaron's house to call him out. The outlaws may have heard voices in Aaron's house, and thought that if they called him outside his door their voices would have been recognized by him, and he would have been on his guard, so they got Wicks, who lived close by Aaron, to call him.
Whilst all this was going on at Woolshed, Ned Kelly and Hart were busy elsewhere. About 2.20 o'clock on Sunday morning 27th June, a railway line repair, named Reardon, was awakened by Ned Kelly and Hart at Glenrowan, and told to get up and dress himself. Kelly presented a revolver at his head, and told him he wanted him and a man named Sullivan, also a line repairer, to go and pull up the rails. He said, "We were at Beechworth last night, and killed several people. I expect a special train will be sent from Benalla with a number of police and black trackers, and I am going to kill the lot." Reardon begged Kelly not to take him, as he had a wife and large family. Kelly replied, "You must come, or I will shoot you." Kelly told him to pick up the tools he required. Kelly, Hart, Reardon, and some other workmen walked along the line to a place about half a mile away from Glenrowan, where there was a steep embankment with a fall on each side of about twenty or thirty feet. Hart pointed out the rails to be taken up, and Reardon and the others took up two rails. They were a considerable time about it, and Kelly found fault with them for not being quicker, and threatened to tickle some of them with his revolver if they did not hurry up. When this was done they all walked back to Glenrowan, and were marched into Mrs Jones's hotel, and were kept prisoners there.
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