“Look Australia! Our bushrangers are far more interesting and complex than you realise!” – The story behind The Legend of Ben Hall

This week we asked film-maker Matthew Holmes, writer and director of The Legend of Ben Hall, to pen some thoughts about his passion for Ben Hall, bushrangers, film-making and how that translated into his award winning film. Continue reading “Look Australia! Our bushrangers are far more interesting and complex than you realise!” – The story behind The Legend of Ben Hall

Spotlight: WHEN JOHNNY GILBERT WAS SHOT AT BINALONG: BUSHRANGER, DAYS RECALLED BY FINDING OF OLD HANDCUFFS.

WHEN JOHNNY GILBERT WAS SHOT AT BINALONG ~:~ BUSHRANGER, DAYS RECALLED BY FINDING OF OLD HANDCUFFS. It was 68 years on Saturday last, (according to Tom Lovett in “Temora Star”) since Johnhy Gilbert the bushranger, was shot dead, at Binalong, … Continue reading Spotlight: WHEN JOHNNY GILBERT WAS SHOT AT BINALONG: BUSHRANGER, DAYS RECALLED BY FINDING OF OLD HANDCUFFS.

Spotlight: For Frank Gardiner

Owen Suffolk was a bushranger who spent more than a decade in prison for a range of crimes, particularly Pentridge Prison. Suffolk gained the moniker “The Poet” for his deftness with poetry much of which refers to the experience of convicts and bushrangers. Perhaps his most well-known is For Frank Gardiner. It is a bold declaration of defiance and desire for freedom at any cost, the sort of liberty the outlaw archetype represents free from the constraints of the law and the mores of society; a liberty denied Frank Gardiner when he was finally apprehended at Apis Creek and dragged back to New South Wales. Continue reading Spotlight: For Frank Gardiner

Tragedy at Collector: John Dunn and Constable Nelson

At the beginning of 1865 the Ben Hall Gang were the most wanted men in Australia. Their success on the roads was problematic and they were nigh on untouchable. However, after a failed coach robbery in Black Springs resulting in Johnny Gilbert killing Sergeant Edmund Parry, the gang now had to tread carefully. The new recruit John Dunn was working out splendidly, taking to his role with a natural gift that saw him very quickly gain equal notoriety to his colleagues. Things were about to become far more serious as the gang descended upon Thomas Kimberly’s Inn in Collector on the outskirts of Forbes on January 26, 1865. Continue reading Tragedy at Collector: John Dunn and Constable Nelson

Spotlight: REVOLTING and HORRIBLE SCENE at the EXECUTION OF HENRY MANNS.

The following is an account of the hanging of Henry Manns, sentenced to death for his role in the Eugowra Rocks robbery. What follows is taken directly from The Newcastle Chronicle and Hunter River District News of 1 April, 1863. Be warned, it is not for the squeamish. Continue reading Spotlight: REVOLTING and HORRIBLE SCENE at the EXECUTION OF HENRY MANNS.