Herald (18)

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The Herald

3 /07/1880

... part of the KellyGang story

The Herald continued with its reports of the KellyGang and Glenrowan.

full text of article

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One of the oldest settlers in the Greta district, who was an eye witness to the encounter with the Kelly gang at Glenrowan, supplied some particulars which reached us second hand. He knows not only every man, women, and child in the whole of the district where the gang of bushrangers roamed, but he is also knows, so to speak, every stone and tree in it. On Sunday last he left home and went across country, intending to take the first train on Monday morning for Wodonga, and then to make his way to one of Mr. Wilson's stations on the Upper Darling in New South Wales. He arrived at Glenrowan just before the fight commenced, and has a great deal to say about it which would throw some light on the affair. He has however left this morning for N. S. W., and the following information is supplied by a sister of his residing in Richmond:-

My brother came to Melbourne on Monday night by the train which brought the police. I was just then reading a morning newspaper, and he said there was not a word of truth in that paper in reference to the building at Sebastopol where Sherritt was shot. He said; “I camped many a time opposite the house, and know every inch of it. It is ridiculous to say that the police were under cover and could not come out of it. They could have shot the Kellys as easily as I drink this cup of tea.” My brother then described the situation of the building. An Argus was sent for and I read to him the account, and he said the particulars about the house were exaggerated. Speaking about the hotel at Glenrowan, my brother said, “I should not be surprised if the Melbourne folks kept their eyes open, if they found out the reason why the Kellys were in Jones' house. It was not the sort of place represented by the papers. It was simply a bush shanty. Since the extension of the line, few travellers went to the house.” My brother considered that the Kellys could not have been taken without firing the house. He laughed at the idea, and thought the police ought to have had a deliberate fight for it, when two of them were shot.

He sympathised with Kate Kelly for the manner in which the police treated her. It was mere chance that the girl was not shot, as the police did not know what they were doing, and were firing at random. Kate Kelly is quite a different girl to what she has been described and she behaved quite differently to the manner ascribed to her by the police. She is a simple country girl. On Monday, after it was over, she jumped on horse back and rode across country to Glenrowan. When she arrived there, she dropped down and fainted. When she recovered all she said was, “Thank God, the police had not the satisfaction of shooting my brothers.” When she found Ned Kelly alive she was overwhelmed with joy mingled with grief. My brother does not sympathise with the crimes the Kellys have committed, but he thinks that they have been treated very badly by the police.


 BENALLA, This day.

A body of police left here last night to go to Glenrowan in case of any disturbance at that place. With the exception of a few well-known characters who were loitering about, apparently without any special object, matters were quiet. Early this morning, however, one of the children of the stationmaster, whilst crossing from the gate-house to the track at the rear of McDonnell's Hotel, came across a keg of blasting powder planted in a log about fifty yards away. The powder was carefully packed in an oil can, and an opening left for the insertion of a fuse. The apparatus could easily be used in its present form for the purpose of blowing up any place if such a course of action were necessary. It was conveyed to the station, and left in charge of the police. Senior-constable Kelly returned to Benalla this morning, leaving the powder at Glenrowan. It will be brought on later in the day.


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