Jerilderie Letter (2)

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The Story of the Kelly Gang 1906.jpg

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Next morning I was handcuffed a rope tied from thein to my legs and to the seat of the cart and taken to Wangaratta Hall was frightened I would throw him out of the cart so he tied me whilst Constable Arthur laughed at his cowardice for it was he who escorted me and Hall to Wangaratta. I was tried and committed as Hall swore I claimed the mare the Doctor died or he would have proved Hall a perjurer Hall has been tried several times for perjury but got clear as this is no crime in the Police force It is a credit to a Policeman to convict an innocent man but any rnutt can pot a guilty one Halls character is well known about El Dorado and Snowy Creek and Hall was considerably in debt to Mr L. O'Brien and he was going to leave Greta. Mr O'Brien seen no other chance of getting his money so there was a subscription collected for Hall and with the aid of this money he got James Murdock who was recently hung in Wagga Wagga to give false evidence against me but I was acquitted on the charge of horse stealing and on Hall and Murdocks evidence I was found guilty of receiving and got 3 years experience in Beechworth Pentridges dungeons.

This is the only charge ever proved against me. Therefore I can say I never was convicted of horse or cattle stealing My Brother Dan was never charged with assaulting a woman but he was sentenced to three months without the option of a fine and one month and two pound fine for damaging property by Mr. Butler P M a sentence that there is no law to uphold therefore the minister of Justice neglected his duty in that case, but there never was such a thing as justice in the English laws but any amount of injustice to be had. Out of over thirty head of the very best horses the land could produce I could only find one when I got my liberty. Constable Flood stole and sold the most of them to the navvies on the railway line one bay cob he stole and sold four different times the line was completed and the men all gone when I came out and Flood was shifted to Oxley. He carried on the same game there all the stray horses that was any time without an owner and not in the Police Gazette. Flood used to claim He was doing a good trade at Oxley until Mr Brown of Laceby Station got him shifted as he was always running his horses about. Flood is different to Sergeant Steel, Strachan, Hall and the most of Police a they have got to hire cads and if they fail the police are quite helpless. But Flood can make a cheque single-handed he is the greatest horse stealer with the exception of myself and George King I know of.

I never worked on a farm a horse and saddle was never traced to me after leaving employment since February I873 I worked as a faller at Mr J Saunders and R Rules sawmills then for Heach and Dockendorf.I never worked for less than two pound ten a week since I left Pentridge and in I875 or I876 I was overseer for Saunders and Rule. Bourkes water-holes sawmills in Victoria since then I was on the King river. During my stay there I ran in a wild bull which I gave to Lydicher a farmer he sold him to Carr Publican and Butcher who killed him for beef, sometime afterwards I was blamed for stealing this bull from James Whitty Boggy Creek. I asked Whitty Oxley racecourse why he blamed me for stealing his bull he said he had found his bull and never blamed me but his son- in-law. Farrell told him he heard I sold the bull to Carr not long afterwards I heard again I was blamed for stealing a mob of calves from Whitty and Farrell which I knew nothing about. I began to think they wanted me to give them something to talk about. Therefore I started wholesale and retail horse and cattle dealing Whitty and Burns not being satisfied with all the picked land on the Boggy Creek and King River and the run of their stock on certificate ground free and no one interfering with them paid heavy rent to the banks for all the open ground so as a poor man could keep no stock, and impounded every beast they could get. even off Government roads.

If a poor man happened to leave his horse or a bit of a poddy calf outside his paddock they would be impounded. I have known over 60 head of horses impounded in one day by Whitty and Burns all belonging to poor farmers they would have to leave their ploughing or harvest or other employment to go to Oxley. When they would get there perhaps not have money enough to release them and have to gave a bill of sale or borrow money which is no easy matter and along with this sort of work, Farrell the Policeman stole a horse from George King and had him in Whitty and Farrell's Paddocks until he left the force and all this was the cause of me and my step-father George King taking their horses and selling them to Baumgarten and Kennedy. The pick of them was taken to a good market and the culls were kept in Petersons paddock and their brands altered by me two was sold to Kennedy and the rest to Baumgarten who were strangers to me and I believe honest men. They paid me full value for the horses and could not have known they were stolen. no person had anything to do with the stealing and selling of the horses but me and George King. William Cooke who was convicted for Whitty's horses was innocent he was not in my company at Petersons. But it is not the place of the Police to convict guilty men as it is by them they get their living had the right parties been convicted it would have been a had job for the Police as Berry would have sacked a great many of them only I came to their aid and kept them in their bilits and good employment and got them double pay and yet the ungrateful articles convicted my mother and an infant my brother-in-law and another man who was innocent and still annoy my brothers and sisters and the ignorant unicorns even threaten to shoot myself. But as soon as I am dead they will be heels up in the muroo.

There will be no more police required they will be sacked and supplanted by soldiers on low pay in the towns and special constables made of some of the farmers to make up for this double pay and expense. It will pay Government to give those people who are suffering innocence, justice and liberty. If not I will be compelled to show some colonial strategm which will open the eyes of not only the Victoria Police and inhabitants but also the whole British army and now doubt they will acknowledge their hounds were barking at the wrong stump and that Fitzpatrick will be the cause of greater slaughter to the Union Jack than Saint Patrick was to the snakes and toads in Ireland. The Queen of England was as guilty as Baumgarten and Kennedy, Williamson and Skillion of what they were convicted for when the horses were found on the Murray River

I wrote a letter to Mr Swanhill of Lake Rowan to acquaint the Auctioneer and to advertise my horses for sale I brought some of them to that place but did not sell I sold some of them in Benalla Melbourne and other places and left the colony and became a rambling gambler soon after I left there was a warrant for me and the Police searched the place and watched night and day for two or three weeks and when they could not snare me they got a warrant against my brother Dan. And on the I5th of April Fitzpatrick came to the eleven mile creek to arrest him he had some conversation with a horse dealer whom he swore was William Skillion this man was not called in Beechworth besides several other witnesses, who alone could have proved Fitzpatrick's falsehood after leaving this man he went to the house asked was dan in Dan came out I hear previous to this Fitzpatrick had some conversation with Williamson on the hill.