Royal Commission report day 34 page 1

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The Royal Commission evidence for 29/6/1881

(full text transcription)

(see also introduction to day 34)


The Hon. F. LONGMORE, M.L.A., in the Chair;

J. H. Graves , Esq., M.L.A., G. W. Hall, Esq., M.L.A.,

W. Anderson , Esq., M.L.A., E. J. Dixon, Esq., J.P.

J. Gibb, Esq., M.L.A.,

12559a Mr. Nicolson — I wish to make a short statement. Since the last adjournment of the Commission, I observed in the press a statement that Mr. O'Connor had made to the effect that I had favored the proposal as to his appointment. Lest there should be any misconception on that point, I wish to state that I know nothing of his appointment, and had no knowledge of his appointment till it was made.

The Chairman — I do not recollect that having been said–what paper did you see it in?

Mr. Nicolson — Copied from one of the Melbourne papers into the Benalla paper.

Mr. Nicolson withdrew.

Mr. Sadleir — I want to make an application. I see by the papers that Dean Gibney was examined yesterday, and as he is, I understand, travelling through Australia , I should like to have an opportunity of cross-examining him, as his evidence relates entirely as to what was done at Glenrowan.

The Chairman — We will consider that, and see what we can do, and let you know at once.

Sup. Sadleir withdrew, and was again called in

The Chairman — The Commission have been considering the matter, and they think if there is anything that you definitely refer to, that perhaps it would be better, in courtesy to Father Gibney, who is a stranger, that we put it in writing, and send it to him.

Mr. Sadleir — That is a disadvantageous way for me to cross-examine a witness, but I shall be glad to do anything the Commission desire.

The Chairman — What is the character of the cross-examination you desire?— Mr. Sadleir: Father Gibney's statements are very general.

12561 Want of discipline?— Yes, that is one. I am at this disadvantage, too, that I have only the, newspaper report of the proceedings, and that is necessarily brief. I should not take, perhaps, more than ten minutes with Dean Gibney. He stated some facts that are quite out of my recollection, though they may be perfectly true.

12562 Is there anything in what you have read or heard that you think prejudicial to you?— Certainly. I am at these disadvantages, that I do not know exactly what he said.

12563 The principal thing he said about you was that he did not observe that there was any management or control?— That is very serious.

12564 Is that what you wish to examine him on?— That and other points.

12565 There was another statement that he made, that when he went to see the officer in command, he was pointed to one group of men and they said he was with another, and he went to another group and found you. I do not think he inferred from that that you were not attending to your duty?— He is an educated man, and can perfectly well meet any cross-examination. I can trust him. He is not like any man under my authority, who may be suspected of being under terror of my authority over him. I would much sooner not tie myself to what I should ask him.

The Shorthand Writer will read over Father Gibney's evidence to you, and you can write out any questions which you desire to be forwarded to him.

The witness withdrew......

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