Cookson, 21 09 1911 1

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21 September 1911

(full text transcription)

SURVIVOURS OF THE TRADGEDY.

GLENROWAN AND ITS PEOPKE AS THEY ARE TODAY

CAPTURED BY THE OUTLAWS

A “SING SONG” AND IT’S SEQUEL

I knew that there must be a plant of considerable value near the hut, but that fact did not trouble me. My first concern was to induce my custodian to release me of the handcuffs. True, I could have picked up the rifle and met the bushranger with its contents on his return with the liquor, but I did not wish to take life, although the law would have justified me in doing so. Byrne and his confederates being outlaws.

Having drawn cork, Byrne again indulged in the spirit, passing the bottle to me, and, as before, I pretended to take a good portion. It was evident to me that my companion was bent on a ear full and the more liquor he took the merrier and more communicative he became, and I was convinced bushranger was drinking to drown dull cares.

“Give us a song?” said Byrne.

“I would rather listen to you first,” said I.

“Alright,” said Byrne, and he drawled out a song about the “Bold highwayman,” who robbed the rich to give to the poor; and sticking up a carriage on Hounslow Heath, the occupants in their fright said one to the other, “What shall we do?” Deliver up your money, and I won’t touch you.”

When the song was ended I said, “That’s very appropriate, indeed.” The bushranger, who could not see the touch of mild sarcasm in the song, called on me for a song. I was sorely troubled what to sing as appropriate to the occasion. In fact, I was not in any humor for jolification, but I wished Byrne to maintain his present merry mood. So remembering a portion of an old English song I had heard, I gave all I knew about poachers who were out on a moonlight excursion for game, ending with the words:

‘The gamekeeper was watching us, for him I didn’t care;

….......................….n wrestle and fight, my boys, jump

………here.”

……. that’s good; put it there,” said Byrne, holding out his hand.

“I shall be compelled to put them both there,” I replied. “Cant you take these things off?”

“Not me,” answered Byrne; “besides, Dan’s got the key with him.”

“ ‘There’s another pair of them in there,” I said to Byrne, “and I think I saw the key in them.”

“Look here,” he said, “don’t try any monkey tricks on me, or by – I’ll pot you,” and he took up his rifle and held it threateningly, with the muzzle pointed in my direction.

“Oh, never mind,” said I. They hurt me terribly, and I thought you were inclined to be lenient to me.” I saw what I had

…been premature so with an our of indifference

I said, “Lets have another drink.”

.....................................................……………… in whisky if you want to.”

…………...............................................…… taking the bottle, and having

……................………..… it to me.

………........….......................................…..… took those darbies off you.”

………..................................................………first chance you got you’d

……….................................................………..… me and clear out on no,

….

………...................................................………… “I promise you faithfully

………….................................................……… to touch a firearm of any

………………

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the previous day / next day . . . BW Cookson in the Sydney Sun index