The Argus at KellyGang 12/11/1879

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A petition from the Mansfield Council was presented yesterday to the Chief Secretary by Mr H H Kitchen JP the president who was introduced by Mr Graves MLA. Mr Kitchen asked that the sum awarded to the widow of the late Sergeant Kennedy should be increased. Mr Berry said he could scarcely see his way to increase the sum as he considered it a most liberal one but if Mr Graves would bring the matter before Parliament and members approved of a larger amount he would not offer any opposition. We understand that Mr Graves has already received many promises of support from both sides of the House and intends to move that the amount be increased to £200 per annum.

The class of prisoners now at the Pentridge Stockade is in striking contrast to that by which the prison was occupied 20 years ago. In those days a large majority were old hands, who had served sentences in some of the neighbouring colonies and had passed the prime of life. At the present time out of every 20, l8 are young men from 17 to 25, and belong to what is known as the larrikin class. A gentleman who has been making a tour of inspection of all the prisons in this and the other colonies visited Pentridge a few days ago and expressed his surprise at seeing so many young men. In Darlinghurst, he stated, nearly all the prisoners have passed the prime of life, and a large number are so old and decrepit as to be incapable of performing any sort of labour.

Our Alexandra correspondent writes :-"As a further proof in support of the assertion that the Kelly gang are still in the North-eastern district, I may mention an occurrence which came under my notice a day or two ago, the truth of which I can vouch for. Some few weeks since a gentleman whose duties compel him to travel periodically in the North-eastern district, whilst crossing the back country between Benalla and Wangaratta, encountered four armed men. After some conversation, it became evident to the gentleman that they were the outlaws, and the latter, observing they were recognised, immediately bound him over under the most solemn promises not to divulge the fact of his having met them, until after the expiration of a month, threatening in the most fearful manner that if he did they would shoot him the very first opportunity. The gentleman kept his promise, and said nothing of the matter until a month had elapsed, when he received an anonymous letter enclosing two £5 notes on the Bank of New South Wales, Jerilderie, as a reward for having so faithfully adhered to his promise."

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