Ovens and Murray Advertiser (4)

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Inquest in John Jones

Jane Jones deposed: Am a daughter of Ann Jones, a publican residing at Glenrowan. Have seen the body now in the dead-house of the hospital, and identify it as that of my brother (John Jones). Was in the kitchen of our house at Glenrowan on the morning of the 28th inst., in company with my mother. We were bailed up by the Kelly gang. My brother was, at this time, in another portion of the house. There was a lot of firing going on from the outside. There was no firing from the inside of the house going on. Whilst in the kitchen I was wounded in the head, after which I went into the room where my brother was lying, with a number of others. Asked him if he was much hurt. He replied, “Oh, take me by the hand and tell mother to come to me.” Then took him to the kitchen and laid him by the fire-place. I got a pillow and put it under his head, and then gave him a drink of water. In company with my mother, we brought the deceased to the Wangaratta Hospital .

George Haley deposed: Am the resident-surgeon of the Wangaratta Hospital . I have seen the body now in the dead-house, and identify it as that of a boy named John Jones, who was brought to the hospital at half-past twelve o’clock on the morning of the 28th inst. On examination I found he was suffering from a gunshot wound just behind the hip. I made a search for the bullet, but was unable to find it. He was in a very low state from loss of blood. After his wounds were dressed he said he felt much easier, and did not appear to have much pain. I considered the case hopeless. When I last saw him about 11 p.m. he was considerably lower, but still conscious. The cause of death was the effects of a gunshot wound.

Francis Edward Brady deposed: Am the house-steward of the Wangaratta Hospital . I have seen the body now in the dead house, and identify it as that of a patient named John Jones, who was brought to the hospital about half-past 11 noon on the 28th inst. He was suffering from a gunshot wound in the hip. While dressing the wound, I asked if he would tell me how he received it; and he said he was shot by a bullet passing the house whilst lying down. He said that after he was shot, the people were afraid to assist him, on account of the number of bullets that were flying about. He died about a quarter to one on the morning of the 29th inst.

His Worship found in accordance with the medical testimony.


The inquest was resumed before the coroner, Mr W H Foster, at the Courthouse, Beechworth, on Wednesday. The depositions taken on Monday having been read to the jury.

Ellen Barry (recalled) deposed: When I was outside Byrne placed me between him and the door. There was no opening behind, except the back door. Persons occupying the room could not fire through the back door at Byrne. Two shots were fired at the side of the house. There was no shots fired by the police that I am aware of. When Duross went into the bedroom after he had heard the shot, it was so that he should not be seen. There was no shot fired in the other door. I did not notice Dan Kelly firing the shot. As Aaron to the door, When he mentioned the sapling, it was simply down as a lark. Did not hear anyone else about. As far as I know, there were only two persons there. The doors were open for some time after the outlaws went away. After Byrne fired the first shot, he told me to go and see if the boards were off. Dan Kelly went round and came back again. I was talking to Byrne about ten or fifteen minutes. He took me by the arm down to the end of the house. Weekes came down with us. Dan, at this time, was collecting bushes to burn down the house. Byrne asked me if we used kerosene, and I said “No, candles.” Never heard Dan speak. Could not say whether he set fire to the bushes. Weekes was standing beside me all the time. Byrne told me to bring my daughter out, because I was frightened of her being burnt. I said “Don’t burn the house whatever you do.” The dog was barking as if something was about the house. I did not hear anyone talking afterwards.

To the jury: I did not leave the house until next day. The police came out of the bedroom during the night. I could not say whether the police went outside. Byrne had a hat on. I could see Dan Kelly’s face. He had a hat on. The police could not see Byrne through the calico door. Byrne had a good view of the place inside. The body of the deceased lay on the floor all night. The police sent a Chinaman to Beechworth at daylight next morning; but he came back and said he had not time. O’Donoghue promised to go, but he also came back and said his wife would not let him. A man named Duckett also promised to go; but we heard nothing more about him. Byrne asked me if Jenny Dickson was in the room. I said, “I don’t know.” He said, “How many men are there in the room;” and I said, “Two.” He did not mention policemen. Byrne heard them cocking their guns; and he called out “Don’t you hear them loading their guns?” Aaron did not open the door very wide. I think there was more than one fired at Aaron when he was outside the door. Byrne said “There is a man outside the door who wanted to lag me for stealing a horse (meaning Weekes); but I don’t want to shoot him.”

Antonio Weekes deposed: I am a market gardener residing at the Woolshed. I remember Saturday, the 26th. I left my house to go John Weiner’s. I went to the house, and saw there was no light, so I turned to go back. His place is close to Sherritt’s. The time when I returned would be about ten minutes past six. About 100 yards from Weiner’s, on my return, I met the two bushrangers, Byrne and Kelly. They were both on horseback. Byrne was leading a spare horse. I think I said, “Good evening.” They did not reply; and Byrne rode past about five yards, and then came back again. He asked me what was my name. I said “Weekes, from the Woolshed.” He came close to me and stooped his head down, and said, “Do you know me?” I said, “No, I don’t.” He said. “I am Joe Byrne.” I said, “I don’t believe it.” He put his hand back and showed me a revolver, and said, “Will you believe me now.” He said, “This is Mr Kelly,” and told him to put the handcuffs on me. Kelly came off and put them on. Byrne did not get off his horse. He told me not to be frightened; that I had a case against him about a horse, but he forgave me. He said “You will have to go with us to Sherritt’s place. Don’t be frightened; if you do what we tell you, we will do you no harm.” They took me with them to Sherritt’s. Kelly got on his horse again. I was between the two of them. Between Weines and Sherritt’s we turned off the road into the bush at the right. They got off their horse and hung them up. Byrne said “You have nothing to do but what I tell you.” Kelly then turned off on foot, and went down the main road. Byrne then told me I was to go with him, and knock at the door. He put me in front of Sherritt’s back door, about a yard distant. He told me to knock, and he was standing close beside me.

When they left the horses they took a rifle or a gun from the horses, I could not say which. He told me to knock, and afterwards call “Aaron.” He was standing behind me with a rifle, and said if I did not do so as he told me he would shoot me. I called “Aaron,” and someone called out “Who’s there?” Byrne then told me to reply, “Weekes,” and to say in reply to the question “What do you want?” that I had lost myself. Aaron opened the door, and said “Who’s there?” Byrne shot him immediately, and he fell inside the hut. Am not sure, but think that he fired a second shot. Saw Aaron fall back into the room. Byrne then looked into the door and saw Mrs Sherritt and Mrs Barry, and said “That’s the man I wanted.” He asked Mrs Barry to send the two men out. The women were sitting near the chimney Mrs Barry went out of the hut and spoke to Byrne, for about half or three-quarters of an hour. Byrne about ten or twelve minutes afterwards put shots through the bedroom, saying he wanted the men out, or he would set the house on fire. Saw two shots fired from the front of the house. Byrne then about twenty minutes afterwards took Mrs Barry and myself away from the door, taking the handcuffs off me. About 15 minutes after this he sent Mrs Barry into the house. Heard some persons talking in the bush some distance away from me. This was after the shots had been fired into the house. Byrne asked Kelly whether he should send me into the house too. Kelly said “Don’t send him in.” Byrne waited about the house for some time after; and left me. He said nothing to me. I was standing there in the bush for about three-quarters of an hour. Hearing no further noise, I left. Do not think they were near the place then, but did not hear or see them leave. From the time I left Sherritt’s house till I arrived home was fifteen minutes. I arrived home about half-past nine.


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