Spotlight: Gilbert, Hall, and Dunn’s Raid on the Nubriggan (2 May 1865)

A correspondent of the Western Examiner reports that on the evening of Sunday, as Mr. Brazier, land lord of the Nubriggan Inn, with some other gentlemen, were enjoying their pipes, four horsemen well mounted, three of them with every appearance of wealthy gentlemen, dashed up to the door. The stoutest immediately dismounted, entered the inn, and walking up to Mr. Brazier, ordered him to turn out his pockets, Mr. Brazier thinking it was making rather free, asked him sternly what he meant, and ordered him behind the bar, but the sight of a revolver in hand and a number round his waist caused him to unbend his brows, and submit with as good a grace as possible.

Continue reading Spotlight: Gilbert, Hall, and Dunn’s Raid on the Nubriggan (2 May 1865)

Spotlight: Westwood writes to his parents (29 April 1847)

In a former number we gave the copy of a letter written by William Westwood, better known as Jackey Jackey, and at the time of its appearance an attempt was made to shew that he had died breathing a spirit of bitterness very unsuited to any man at the last hour of his existence. What the motives for doing Westwood such an injustice, it is not our present purpose to inquire; certain however it is, that such was not the fact, as the following copy of another letter will show. “Justice to free and bond” is our maxim in such matters, and we see no reason why the last dying thoughts of the malefactor should not be as fairly represented as those of him whose life has not been forfeited to the offended laws of his country. Continue reading Spotlight: Westwood writes to his parents (29 April 1847)

Spotlight: Smith and Brady on Trial (22 October 1872)

James Smith, Thomas Brady and William Happenstein, three men in the garb of bushmen, were charged with robbery under arms, and attempted murder at Wooragee. Mr Superintendent Barclay said that the defendants had been to a certain extent identified by some of the persons who were present when the robberies took place; as, however, they had only been arrested on Saturday afternoon, he would ask for a remand, in order that proper enquiries might be made. Remanded till Monday next. Continue reading Spotlight: Smith and Brady on Trial (22 October 1872)

Spotlight: Gipsy Smith the Victorian Bushranger (23 April 1904)

I have no hesitation in saying that he is identical with the Gipsy Smith who in 1857 became a notorious bushranger in Victoria, and who was as famed for his daring and successful robberies as for his good humour and courtesy to his victims. Brisbane at that date was known in Victoria as Moreton Bay, and Gipsy Smith often regaled his victims with a recital of pranks he played while up here. Strange to say he presented none of the physical marks of the “old hand,” the “Vandemonian,” or the “t’other sider,” as these ex-convicts were called, on his person or in his manner. That was strange, for I have seen here in Australia those people, male and female, in every position of life, in Parliament, on the bench, and in the police, in the mansion and in the hovel, all displaying the indelible brand of the brutal system with which demons in human form treated them while convicts from the old country. Continue reading Spotlight: Gipsy Smith the Victorian Bushranger (23 April 1904)

Spotlight: Smith and Brady Convicted (21 April 1873)

At the Beechworth Circuit Court on Friday last James Smith and Thomas Brady were arraigned on a charge of having feloniously murdered one John Watt, at Wooragee.

Prisoners pleaded not guilty, and were defended by Mr. F. Brown, instructed by Mr. G. Smith. The evidence. in the case has already been published and it is therefore unnecessary to recapitulate it. Happenstein, who was committed for trial with the prisoners, was allowed to turn Queen’s evidence. At the conclusion of the case, as we learn from the “Ovens and Murray Advertiser,” the jury retired, and after an absence of three-quarters of an hour, returned into court with a verdict of guilty. Continue reading Spotlight: Smith and Brady Convicted (21 April 1873)

Spotlight: Bushranging reports in the Yass Courier (20 April 1864)

On Thursday night last Messrs. Collins, do Body, Brown, and Victor Frank arrived here, and reported that about noon on that day they were attempted to be stuck-up by two men near McKay’s dam, on the road leading to Gundagai, and about three or four miles abreast of Cootamundry. They stated that when the two bushrangers galloped out of the bush towards them, they made off at the top of their horses’ speed; Mr. Collins, who was the best mounted, took the lead, followed by the others. The bushrangers having galloped after them for about a mile they were joined by seven others, all of whom took up the chase for a short time, when they turned back, and allowed the Gundagai-bound men to go their way. Continue reading Spotlight: Bushranging reports in the Yass Courier (20 April 1864)

Spotlight: Morgan the Bushranger – Latest Particulars (19 April 1865)

His last exploit in New South Wales was sticking up the Kyamba mail, after which he proceeded by way of Tumberumba, in the Billabong district, to the Murray, crossing that river at Yoe or Thugulong, about 20 or 30 miles from Albury. He was next seen at Mr. J. Wilson’s station, Wallangatta, from which he stole a racing mare and another horse dur[ing] the night, being able to get clear off with his spoil, as Mr. Wilson was from home and the superintendent away to the back country with weaners, taking all the shepherds and dogs with him. There was thus nothing to give the alarm; and Morgan was allowed plenty of leisure to effect his depredations. Continue reading Spotlight: Morgan the Bushranger – Latest Particulars (19 April 1865)

Spotlight: Morgan, the Bushranger (Poem; 15 April 1865)

Dark, brooding, melancholy, and alone,
Beast-like, the ruffian plundered, prowled and slew,
Without a rival or compeer to own
His fellowship ; all shuddered in his view.
Like to a tiger whose fierce maw once drew
The life-blood from some shrieking unaware,
And ever after’s thirsty to renew
The baleful draught ; still watching from his lair,
Where fetid bones, half-gnawed, pollute and plague the air.
Thus seemed the human monster ; he had swilled
His godless hands full oft in human gore :
It was a pastime— horrid, grim, but filled
His fiendish longing restlessness for more.
It joyed the tiger’s instinct in his core ;
Or devil’s impulse that delighted in
Such deeds as man bad never done before ;
That sighed to top the summit of all sin
Which man hath scaled, where devildom can but begin. Continue reading Spotlight: Morgan, the Bushranger (Poem; 15 April 1865)

Spotlight: Bushrangers in court in Bathurst (13 April 1865)

James Mount alias Gordon alias the “Old Man,” and James Dunleavy were charged with, on the 7th day of July, 1861, assaulting and robbing William Brandon, and taking from him a quantity of letters, the property of himself and another.

Mr. Dalley applied for time to plead on behalf of Dunleavy, which was granted.

Gordon, after having objected to be arraigned by any other name, pleaded guilty. His Honor reserved sentence. Continue reading Spotlight: Bushrangers in court in Bathurst (13 April 1865)