Royal Commission report day 40 page 4
Story of the KellyGang - the Royal Commission Report
The Royal Commission evidence for 28/7/1881
(see also introduction to day 40)
[[../../people/peU_Z/wardPdet.html|Det Michael Edward Ward]] giving evidence
14158 Your telegram runs:— “Call on the special-duty men for separate reports as to the nature of their duty. Hagger knows what to say.” Armstrong, in his evidence, said that you instructed him not to appoint a sentry at Sherritt's hut?— They could not have a sentry; they were supposed to be inside all day.
14159 It was you who gave the instructions to them?— Yes.
14160 What were they?— My instructions to Armstrong were to go to this hut, to secrete themselves there in the room during the day, and between eight and nine o'clock at night to go down to Mrs. Byrne's house, and there watch till a little before daylight in the morning; to be back in the hut before daylight, and to keep themselves quiet during the day. I bought calico for the door and blinds for the window, in order to have them not seen.
14161 They were by no means to leave the house during the day?— By no means to leave the house during the day. There were only three sent first, and Mr. Hare sent a telegram to me to say, “I am frightened three men is not enough; it is not safe; send one immediately; I will send you a man as soon as I can ,” and I did so.
14162 You were not aware that the men left the hut at any time during the day?— No.
14163 You have heard it since?— Yes. I would not have had them do it for anything, the place was so open; and if I went down there, everybody knew Ward . I might tell you that on one occasion I was going down there Mr. Hare put me in the boot of the buggy while I was going there. I was so well known that I had to be always doing my work by night. I might tell you also that Comyn and Ryan , two constables I had sent out to watch Aaron Sherritt 's hut some time before, when I went to see them one night, told me their presence was known. I directed them to return at once on the next evening and inform Mr. Hare . That would show I would not keep the men if I knew there was anything known. This was on a former occasion, some eighteen months previously.
14164 By Mr. Nicolson— Aaron Sherritt was absent about two nights you say—was that on the occasion of his marriage?— Yes.
14165 And you said you replied to Barry by letter?— Yes.
14166 Will you shortly relate to the Commission about the trouble the police had—you and Mullane—with reference to Aaron about the time of his marriage?— At that time we had a great difficulty to contend with, on account of Aaron Sherritt getting married to a Roman Catholic girl against the will of the parents.
14167 Did that interfere very much with other arrangements?— It did.
14168 Is that the matter that is referred to in Barry's letter?— Yes.
14169 By the Commission— Is that what Barry refers to when he says, “From the conversation of Mrs. Sherritt”?— No, that refers to one occasion. I took a copy of Barry 's letter.
14170 By Mr. Nicolson— Do you remember Aaron Sherritt being brought in by you to see me?— I do.
14171 From what was said to him, did he settle down to his work shortly afterwards?— Yes.
14172 And lived with his wife—he had been apart from her for a few days?— Yes.
14174 What was the cause of that jealousy?— The marriage of the son to a Roman Catholic.
14177 Did Mrs. Sherritt, senior, ever deny that?— Yes, she said the never spoke to Barry; she said that in her evidence.
14178 Now are you aware that occasionally, from almost the first week that the men were stationed at the cave, there were little grumblings?— Many grumblings amongst themselves.
14179 I mean about the work, and so on?— Yes.....
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