Cookson, 17 09 1911 2

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17 September 1911

(full text transcription)


"BAIL UP!" continued

The guides pointed out every spot where the incidents of this terrible tragedy occurred, while I gazed at the fallen tree on which Scanlon sat reading, unconscious of danger. I carefully examined the trees in the direction which Kennedy took while dodging for cover, and counted the splashes of nine bullets. There was no doubt they were fired at Kennedy by the Kellys, as their position proved. On the return journey the elder brother impressed me with the necessity for strict secrecy in regard to our proceedings on the day. I promised to be discreet, and we parted at the river.


There were three home paddocks at Mount Battery Station. One, the cow paddock, by reason of its being used as a night paddock for milkers; another, the horse paddock, in which the working horses ran; and a smaller one for the reception of the milkers' calves at night. The cow paddock was often used for the temporary reception of fat cattle that had been drafted for market, or store cattle coming into the station. It was one of my duties to receive, count, and record the number of cattle coming to, and likewise the number going from the station. On one occasion the manger had received intimation from the station owners that they had purchased a number of store cattle. These were coming from New South Wales by way of Wodonga, at which place the station stockmen were to receive them, and drive them to the station. These cattle were met, and in due course arrived at the station. It being dusk when they arrived they were driven into the cow paddock for the night. In the morning the men whose duty it was to milk the cows reported to me that, on going for the cows, the paddock gate was open. Twenty of the cattle were missing cattle to the river, where there were traces of their having broken, talking different directions. The stockmen followed the river in opposite directions, whilst I crossed to the other side. On crossing over I found fresh cattle tracks, as if recently coming from water. These tracks I followed to the identical road which the brothers took when guiding me to the scene of the murders. I followed the road for some distance, when the tracks turned into the bush. I came upon two timber-getters. They told me five head of cattle passed half an hour before. They pointed in the direction they had taken, and I, thinking they would feed as they travelled, concluded I would overtake them, and to that end went in pursuit. Presently I heard the cracking of a dead branch, and before I had time to look round a voice called out, "Bail up! Though up your hands!"

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