Sergeant Arthur Loftus Maule Steele (kneeling at centre) with the Wangaratta police who helped destroy the Kelly Gang at Glenrowan: Constables Causey, Montford, Healey, Walsh, Moore, Dixon and Dwyer. Slung over Steele’s left shoulder is possibly the saddle bag Ned Kelly was wearing when captured. This bag, used to hold Ned’s guns and bullets, is on display at the Victoria Police museum. Steele also holds the double-barrelled shotgun he used during the siege and Ned’s last stand.
When Ned had been brought down and his helmet removed, Steele grabbed his beard and put his pistol to Ned’s head saying “I swore I’d be at your death and now I am!” before Constable Hugh Bracken intervened. Steele’s conduct at Glenrowan was questionable at best, driven by his personal vendetta to see Ned Kelly punished for the killing of Sergeant Michael Kennedy.
Picture credit: Barnes, William Edward 1841-1916, photographer.
Victorian Patents Office Copyright Collection (VPOCC), State Library of Victoria