Melbourne Gaol

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Side of Authority
This page contains content from police and those who supported authority.


in Russell Street Melbourne see also Pentridge Gaol


The Melbourne Gaol was commenced in 1852-64. The women's gaol was opened in 1871

Importance of Melbourne Gaol


Photograph Ned Kelly was hung in the Melbourne Gaol, his mother was a prisoner in the same gaol at the time.

What was Melbourne Gaol like in the late 1870s

The present building had a women's gaol down the hill in what is now the RMIT. There was a hospital and houses for the wardens etc

Plans to close part of the gaol (Argus13/11/78)

Links to the KellyGang

In about November 1878 Mrs Kelly was transfered into the women's part of the gaol


Ned Kelly's arrival at the Melbourne Gaol after the Glenrowan seige 7/1880

Mr John Buckley Castieau was the Governor of the Melbourne Gaol, he recieved Ned Kelly on his arrival from Glenrowan. See (Argus30/6/80) (OMA1/7/80)(MDTel1/7/80) (JJK)

Dr Shields the Gaol doctor, examined Ned Kelly with Dr Ryan and had him placed in a water bed. The doctors reported that Ned Kelly was, 'healthy and exceptionally clean. 'Most serious wound in left arm. Ball struck when arm was bent, entering mid-way between wrist and elbow, passing through arm and piecing it again above the elbow. Four slug wounds in right thigh and leg. Slugs in right hand near thumb prevented him from using rifle. Shot in left foot near big toe, bullett passing through instep. Kelly suffering mental depression.'

Later the Reverend FJ Aylward from St Patrick's Cathederal came to see Ned Kelly. He passed the news of what happened on to Mrs Kelly. Some time later Mr Castieau let Mrs Kelly see Ned for half an hour (Argus 30/6/80)

Dr Shields looked after Ned Kelly very well. He was his prize prisoner and the task was to get Ned fit enough to stand trial in Beechworth. On 1/8/1880 Ned Kelly was given a blue suit and told he was to get himself ready yo go to Beechworth. It was time for his commital hearing in the Beechworth Court of Petty Sessions. ( Argus 30/6/80 for details of Ned Kelly's condition on arrival and how he was looked after and my official medical report on him)

Dr Barker was the chief medical officer, He saw Ned Kelly in his last days. (BWC)

Dean O'Hea and Father Dean Donaghy were the gaol chaplains who looked after Ned Kelly. Rev O'Hea was a Frenchman by birth, but the possessor of a rich Irish brogue. See also (Herald5/7/1880) (BWC)

Mrs Skillion, Kate Kelly and James Kelly tried to see Ned Kelly (OMA8/7/1880)

Ned Kelly was returned to the Melbourne Gaol after his committal hearing in Beechworth. (Argus13/8/80)

Dr Shields took a bullet out of Ned Kelly's foot when he returned from his committal hearing in Beechworth (Argus16/8/80)

Dr Shields certified that Ned Kelly was fit to travel to Beechworth for his committal. (Argus2/8/80)

Ned Kelly's Execution

Ned Kelly's last few hours (Argus12/11/80)

Mr Castieau allowed Ned Kelly to see his mother before his execution

Ned Kelly was hung in the Melbourne Gaol on 11/11/1880. (Age11/11/80)

Have you visited

What to see

What happened at the Melbourne Gaol after the time of the Kelly Gang

The Gaol was formally closed in 1929

Was Ned Kelly's body found (Argus13/4/1929)

What is happening at the area of Melbourne Gaol today

The Old Melbourne Gaol is now operated by the National Trust as a Museum. It has housed one of the 4 suits of KellyGang armour. See [1]

The Gaol as it exists today consists of the main prison for men. There was another part that looked similar to the existing part that was behind the existing building that went down towards Swantson street. It contained the women's block where Mrs Kelly was imprisoned. There was another block in the middle that made the Gaol into a T shape.

In 2001-2002 the National Trust hosted Ned the Exhibition, a display of items of Kelly memorabilia.