Spotlight: Braidwood (09/02/1871)

Newcastle Chronicle (NSW : 1866 – 1876), Thursday 9 February 1871, page 2



Yesterday, the coach with the Sydney, and Goulburn mail was stuck-up by a bushranger. All the Goulburn letters were taken. The police went in pursuit about noon, and at 7 o’clock, the bushranger was brought in by senior-constable Hurley and constable Bragg, after a smart chase. His name is William Maher, a native of Goulburn. He had previously robbed a Chinaman of £5, with horse, saddle, and bridle. He also took a fresh horse from a paddock near town. Great credit is due to senior-constable Hurley for the rapidity with which he overtook and captured Maher.

Spotlight: Morgan the Bushranger (30/01/1864)

Freeman’s Journal (Sydney, NSW : 1850 – 1932), Saturday 30 January 1864, page 7


Morgan the Bushranger. — The old friend of the inhabitants of the Billybong, known as the celebrated Morgan, on Tuesday last, the 12th inst., paid a visit to Wilberforce’s Hotel, Piney Ranges. He said that he called there in consequence of reports that had been circulated about him which were untrue. He was bad enough, but did not want to be made worse than he really was. He behaved in a very gentlemanly manner. The landlord asked him to have a drink, which he accepted, and had a bottle of porter. While drinking it, Morgan said, “Wilberforce, you are smoking a very handsome pipe; I should like to have it.” The landlord then said, “Morgan, you shan’t take it; I will make you a present of it.” He said, “I don’t want to take anything form you,” and thanked Mr. Wilberforce for the pipe. After this a bottle of porter was tossed for, which he lost and paid for. He then stated that he had no wish to molest anyone, and if he was not interfered with, be would not interfere with them. He remained for nearly three hours, sitting in the verandah; then left saying, “Good afternoon, Mr. Wilberforce.” Mr, Wilberforce told him he would publish all that transpired. Morgan said, “Publish what you like but don’t make the devil blacker than he really is.” — Border Post.

“What do you ask for this article?” inquired an exquisite of a young shop-woman. “Fifteen shillings,” was the reply. “Arn’t you a little dear?” said he. “Well,” she replied, blushing considerably, “All the young men tell me so.”

Spotlight: Miscellaneous Bushranging News (21/01/1864)

Portland Guardian and Normanby General Advertiser (Vic. : 1842 – 1843; 1854 – 1876), Thursday 21 January 1864, page 1


CAPTURE OF A BUSHRANGER. – Intelligence, says the Sydney M. H. of the 5th inst., was received from Maitland last evening that Sergeant Shannon, with a trooper, had, after several days’ pursuit, succeeded in capturing the bushranger who has been perpetrating the recent outrages on the Northern road, including the robbery of the Tamworth mail. We are informed that this bushranger is identified as the prisoner Mackie who escaped from the train near Liverpool, while en route from Goulburn to Sydney. It is expected that he.will be brought to Maitland to-night.

CAPTURE OF MACKIE. – We have much pleasure to record the capture of this notorious villain, through the energy of senior Sergeant Thorpe and some other members of the police force. It appears that having learnt that Mackie was in this district, senior Sergeant Thorpe, with senior Constable Gordon, and Constables McMorrow, Leonard, and Warren, proceeded last Sunday evening to the residence of a free selector, living at Batty’s Creek, near Falbrook, where they arrived about half-past one o’clock on Monday morning. They immediately surrounded the house, and searched it, but could not discover the object of their search. The police, however, remained about the place, and at daybreak Constable Leonard discovered what appeared to him to be Mackie lying asleep, concealed under some bushes of a cockatoo fence which had been used as a temporary fence around a corn paddock. Four of the police immediately surrounded the spot, and Mackie having in the meantime awoke and got up, attempted to escape. He was however secured, and upon being searched a large quantity of cheques and notes stolen at the late mail robbery were found upon him. Near him were found a double-barrelled gun, and also two single-barrelled pistols, capped and loaded, which he attempted to grasp before being seized. He afterwards said that he was sorry for not having made a show, for that certainly he would have shot some of the Constables if he had done so. After being secured with a double pair of handcuffs, he was strapped to the saddle, and after having been conveyed about three or four miles, he made a sudden jerk, jumped off the horse, and attempted to climb over a fence alongside the road. He was, however, again secured, and handcuffed to senior-sergeant Thorpe, who arrived safely with his prisoner in the Singleton lock-up about eleven o’clock this (Monday) morning. Mackie admitted that he robbed the mail the other day, and also stated that they might think themselves very lucky of having captured him, as it was his intention to have stuck up the bank at Singleton on a Court day, when the Constables were absent at the Court. Sergeant Thorpe informs us that Mackie is certainly one of the most determined villains that he has ever come across, and states that it was very lucky the way he was captured, otherwise probably the lives of some of the Constables would have been sacrificed. — Singleton correspondent of the Maitland Mercury.

SUPPOSED CAPTURE OF “CAPTAIN THUNDERBOLT.” – The Maitland Mercury 7th inst says :– On Sunday evening senior-constable O’Sullivan apprehended a man on a charge of highway robbery or bushranging. The fellow captured is supposed to be the highwayman who gave himself the somewhat terrible name of “Captain Thunderbolt,” when committing some petty thefts in the neighbourhood of Maitland. He was apprehended about fourteen miles beyond Dungog, on the road to Gloucester. Mr. Superintendent Lydiard deserves praise for the tact he has manifested in the disposal of the men under his command, by which they have succeeded in ridding the district of the few scoundrels who endeavoured to settle themselves in it after the fashion of the bushrangers in the south and west.

GILBERT AND HIS GANG. – The Marengo correspondent of the Yass Courier, writing on the 28th ultimo says:– Rumours are current that the Gilbert brigade are meditating an attack on a station not a hundred miles from here, as the respected proprietor of the said extensive station has, in the opinion of the robber chief, been guilty of the most heinous of crimes, viz., that of harbouring and entertaining the police. However, before making this attack, let them take a retrospective glance at the fate of O’Meally and Burke, as the owner of the threatened station is well known to be a man of determined courage and a crack shot. When the mail of the 6th instant was stopped and plundered by Gilbert and Hall, two of the servants belonging to the station I refer to were among those previously bailed up, and Gilbert sent a verbal message or warning by them to their master.

THE COOMA MAIL ROBBERY. – The Golden Age gives further particulars of this robbery, by which it appears that the perpetrator is a man named Bermingham, a printer by trade, who lately has been engaged shearing in the neiglhbourhood. On Tuesday, a man was sighted by sergeant Donohue, chased, and captured; and although he is not the perpetrator of this particular felony, it appears that there are charges equally serious against him. He is the man who was fired at by the police in the streets of Queanbeyan as mentioned in our last. The following particulars are from the paper above referred to :– Mr. Superintendent Markham on Monday dispatched sergeant Donohue and another trooper on search, mounting the former on his (Mr. Markham’s) favourite horse. On Tuesday sergeant Donohue, accompanied by one of the Micalago police, both in disguise, in the course of a search for the mail robbers, came upon two men in the bush tailing a small herd of cattle. One of them was seated on a file chesnut horse, to all appearance answering the description of the horse ridden by Bermingham at the time of the mail robbery. Sergeant Donohue immediately singled this fellow out, and an exciting chase ensued. For several miles the pursued led the pursuer at a full gallop over the most broken and dangerous country lying to the east of the Cooma road, and towards the Jingeras, evidently with a view to baffle his pursuer and exhaust his horse. But the sergeant’s horse was as good as the horse of him who led the chase; and sergeant Donohue, after some miles’ riding, had the satisfaction of finding himself gaining on his foe. Being now within pistol-shot he commenced firing at every opportunity presenting, and after sending seven shots after his man he had the pleasure of seeing his horse fall under him exhausted. On coming up to his prisoner, sergeant Donohue demanded his name, which he said was William Dunne of the Rob Roy. Unwilling yet to surrender, Dunne continued to offer resistance, and was not subdued until a blow on the head from a loaded whip was administered by the sergeant, who then threw Dunne his handcuffs and made him put them on himself. Being in a strange country, and not having observed the direction he had travelled, the sergeant was at a loss to retrace his steps with his prisoner; seeing which Dunne became unwilling to afford him any information on the subject, and it was only by threatening to strap him to his horse and drag him where he pleased, that he was induced to act as guide; and thus after a while they reached the high road near the Rob Roy, where Dunnes’ relations reside. Here the sergeant made the prisoner lie down in the road, in sight of his father’s house, and kept sentry over him with his loaded revolvers, forbidding any one to approach the spot. Ultimately the other police, three in number, who had been scouring the bush in different directions. came up, and the prisoner was then securely escorted to Queanbeyan. There are several charges against the prisoner of horse and cattle stealing; and in addition to these he will be charged with being an accomplice of Bermingham in the robbery of the Cooma mail. The chestnut horse he was riding is said to be the one ridden by Bermingham when the mail was stuck up by him and there are other evidences of Dunne’s being a participator in that robbery. Dunne is said to be one of the best riders in these districts; and his first remark on being overtaken by the sergeant was to the effect that he was the first man who had ever overtaken him in pursuit. He also admitted that the shots fired after him all went close by him, and one even passed through his hair, yet he would not surrender till compelled. Doubtless the success of this capture is mainly owing to the fleet and enduring horse ridden by sergeant Donohue, who assured us that with one of the ordinary horses of the service he could never have kept sight of his prisoner. The merit of the arrest, however, belongs entirely to sergeant Donohue; and his success shows plainly that if we are to have bushranging suppressed it must be by the services of men qualified as he is, and by no others. Sergeant Donohue has long been accustomed to rough bush riding, having been for some time superintendent of cattle stations. Light in weight, of an active and determined character, and a thorough horseman, he is just the man for his work. -– Last night the police returned to town, having recovered the whole of the bags, which they found off the road near the scene of the robbery. The bags had all been ransacked, and every letter opened – their contents lying scattered around. There was no money left, of course, but several cheques were recovered amongst the letters and papers gathered up by the police.

Spotlight: Morgan’s Outrage at Kyamba (16/01/1865)

Illustrated Sydney News (NSW : 1853 – 1872), Monday 16 January 1865, page 9


ON the 13th ultimo this notorious murderer paid a visit to Kyamba.

At about noon he made his appearance, at the camp of Mr. Adams, road contractor, and bailed up all his men, and, as the contractor had no cash in hand, he set fire to the tents thus. ruthlessly destroying at least £15 or £20 worth of property. Five Chinamen having made their appearance he ordered them to strip, with a view to searching their garments; they, not understanding the command, and, therefore, apparently hesitating to put it in force, he shot one of them in the arm, just below the shoulder joint. He then robbed the lot, but all the money he found on them was trifling — one small gold piece, and about thirty shillings in silver — the latter he threw away, from his chagrin. He remained at the camp till 5 p.m., having caused tea to be made and a damper prepared for him. Everything, including the account-book of the contractor, was destroyed.

He did not tie the men or secure them in any way, but kept them in such a position as rendered it difficult to have rushed him without incurring a further loss of life. The only weapon in the place was a double-barrel gun unloaded. Morgan said, “He did not like double-barrel guns,” and took it away with him. In the afternoon, Mr. Jones, another contractor, paid a visit to the camp soon after it had been set on fire; he was likewise secured, together with a traveller and two or three other men residing in the neighbourhood, who came there on horseback. On leaving he took these men with him. He made one of them carry the gun, and took them over the mountains to eight miles south of Kyamba. Here he met two buggies, in one of which was Mr. and Mrs. Manson, and in the other were two young men. These he immediately stopped, ordering them out of their buggie; and because Mr. Manson seemed to hesitate, he threatened to shoot the whole of them on the spot. Having got them out, he stripped Mr. Manson, and searched the pockets of the others, taking about £6 in all. He conversed freely for some hours, detailing his various exploits at great length, and dwelling, particularly upon the murder of M’Ginnerty and Smyth, of which he made no attempt at concealment. He stated that he had watched Smyth’s party five days, in order to make sure of the right man. He spoke of three men whom he was determined to shoot before “retiring from business:” — Mr. M’Kenzie, late of Mundarloo; Mr. M’Laurin, of Yarra Yarra; and Sergeant Carroll. On these he expressed himself determined to be revenged; and with respect to the former he declared that if he once had him in his power, £5000 would not save his life. Soon after Mr. Manson had escaped, the mail to Albury arrived, but being very light, Morgan allowed it to pass. Shortly afterwards, the Albury mail arrived, when he ordered the driver to stop. This not being instantly complied with, he fired a shot at him to bring him to. He then made him get out and hold the horses’ heads, while he ransacked the mails.


Spotlight: Brady, Jeffries and McCabe reports (07/01/1826)

Hobart Town Gazette (Tas. : 1825 – 1827; 1830), Saturday 7 January 1826, page 2

On Saturday evening Brady and his party, appeared at Mr. Haywood’s, and robbed him of a large quantity of tea, sugar, tobacco, rum, and flour, besides all the bedding and wearing apparel in the house. Brady alone was mounted on horseback. On coming up, he said, “Mr. Haywood, I am Brady.” He desired him to be under no apprehension of being hurt on account of the late execution of Broadhead, who, he said, was not a bushranger. He wanted provisions only and after remaining about 3 hours, they departed, taking with them 2 horses, besides the one Brady had mounted, to carry their plunder. They said Jeffries, the runaway from Launceston watch-house, had tendered them his services, and had been rejected. While they, were in the house the Messenger arrived with the letters, which they took from him, saying, they wanted only the Government despatches, but carried the whole away with them. They are believed to have crossed the Derwent within these last few days, and to be not many miles distant from Town. We pray and trust most fervently that their iniquitous career may be drawing to its conclusion.

McCabe, Brady and Bryant

The reward offered in another column, by the Government, for the apprehension of that monster in human shape, the murderer Jeffries and the others, though large, will, we are informed, be materially increased by a public subscription. A feeling of horror, and an ardent desire for justice, is roused throughout the Colony, and a public and private effort is making which will give a speedy and decided blow to robbery and bushranging for ever in Van Diemen’s Land. As far as pecuniary means can assist, and it can do much, the Government, we are sure, will be both prompt and liberal. Were these circum-stances known in London to-night, what thousands would be subscribed to-morrow!

Extract of a Letter, dated Launceston, January 1, 1826

“We have three or four fellows out on this side, and yesterday morning they went to the house of a Native Youth named Tibbs, about a mile from this Town and in sight of it. They robbed him, and it is supposed murdered and disposed of the body of his stock keeper. They shot Mr. Tibbs in the neck, and what is more than all they took his wife away with them, with an infant, her first child, sucking at her breast, and she has not been heard of since. Since writing the above, I have heard that Mrs. Tibbs has arrived in Town, but without her child, the villains having murdered it.”

EXECUTION.—Yesterday morning Jas. McCabe, William Priest, John Johnson, Samuel Longworth, Charles Wigley, Jas. Major, W. Pollock and George Harding, underwent the dreadful sentence of the law. All the eight unhappy men died truly penitent, praying most fervently; McCabe in particular offered up an earnest ejaculation, which we trust will be heard, that his associates who are now at large may see the error of their ways and give up their wretched and destructive course.

Richard Brown, James Brown, John Green, Thomas Bosworth, Richard Miller, and William Craven, will likewise undergo the awful sentence of the Law this morning.

James McCabe, post mortem.

Spotlight: Outrages by Morgan (03/01/1865)

Brisbane Courier (Qld. : 1864 – 1933), Tuesday 3 January 1865, page 3



The ruffian has been at work again this week, and to some tune, as the following account will show:— On Monday morning last the mailman brought in the intelligence that the Albury mail had been stuck-up on the Sunday night, between Kyamba and Ten-mile Creek, by a man with a beard down to his waist, and mounted on apparently a stockman’s horse, with a red blanket rolled up in front of him, at once supposed to be Morgan by those on the coach, and as other circumstances show, correctly so. But this event formed but a portion of his day’s exploits, of which we lay a connected account before our readers as far as the various details have reached us, and which include, as will be seen, the burning of a road contractor’s tent and its contents, bailing-up various passengers, shooting a Chinaman in the arm, and sticking up two mails, a very pretty and complete day’s work, and two of the acts so thoroughly characteristic of this ruffian.

Mr. Adams, the road contractor, having some work in Kyamba, was camped there on Sunday week last with a road party, and about two p.m. a man (Morgan) went up to Adams’ tent, and on getting close to it saw one of the men washing himself, whom he asked if he were Adams, but receiving no answer at first, told him he would soon make him answer. The man then told him Adams was in the tent, upon which he went in, and finding Adams there, at once asked him how he settled with his men. Adams did not seem to understand him, and asked him what he meant, to which he replied by asking how he paid his men. Adams said by cheques, and Morgan then told him to come out and he would give him a cheque. The former became alarmed, and seemed to recognise whom it was he had to deal with, for, addressing him then by name, he asked him to do no harm, and if he wanted money he would give him a cheque for £10, if that would be enough. Morgan’s reply was that he wanted none of his b—y cheques, but ordered him again to come out, and he would give him a cheque he would not forget. Adams accordingly came out by his request to the front of the tent, and was ordered by him to stand back; Morgan then asking the men about the place if they had anything in the tent, and, if so, telling them to take them out, as he was going to burn it. One, stating that he had a pair of boots there, was directed to go and fetch them out, which he did. Morgan then deliberately went to the tent, and, according to one account, struck a match and set fire to it himself, but according to another, made one of the men do it, the result being that the tent and its contents were totally destroyed. Having accomplished this malicious act, he made them cook him some food and make him some tea, which they had to cool for him, and during his repast ordered two of the men to cut down two of the telegraph posts, to stop, as we presume, telegraphic communication. He took a double-barrelled gun of Mr. Adams, and amused himself for a short time by practising with it. While thus engaged, a man travelling with his swag came up, and Morgan entering into conversation with him, finished by giving him a pound note, saying, “If every one you meet gives you as much, you’ll do well.” He stopped at the place several hours, and on leaving threatened the men about with the usual consequence if they left to give information.

On the same day he bailed-up a party of six or seven Chinamen coming from the Black Ranges, and the unfortunate one of these men whom he accosted, replying “No savee,” he said “I’ll no savee you,” and without more ado shot at him. The Chinaman was brought in to the hospital on Tuesday night last, with a bullet wound in his left arm near the shoulder. The ball had passed deeply in, and then ran down the bone, and got lost, the limb remaining too swollen at this time for the probe to find it. His account, as far as it is intelligible, is that Morgan and a mate stuck-up a party of them, six or seven Chinese miners from the Adelong, this man amongst the number, and took £5 of his money from a cousin of his, but a handful of silver they rifled him of they pitched away in the bush as useless. This man, it will be observed, states that Morgan had a mate, and one account states that he had one when he went to the tent, but we are inclined to believe from the general statement that he was alone.

On finally leaving Adams’ place, after the outrage described, he appears to have bailed-up four horsemen, who were going towards the American Roads, but to have offered no violence or attempt at robbing any of them, merely stating that he wanted to strike the road, and they must lead the way for him (although one would imagine he certainly knew it himself and so they travelled together for some ten miles, he made one of them carry the empty double barrelled gun he had taken from Adams’ place, and told them he must do all he could that night with the mail, for the bobbies would be after him. He talked a great deal in his usual style, saying, amongst other things, that the best way to get up the wheat this sea-son was to put a fire-stick in it. While travelling along, he caught sight of two buggies on the road, and saying he must have something out of them, rode up and ordered them to stand. A Mr. Manson was in the one buggy, and happening to put his hand behind him in the act of stopping, as if in the act of feeling for a revolver (whether it was so or no), Morgan, it is said, was all but shooting him, restraining his hand, however, and saying, “Would you lose your life for a few paltry notes?” He made him dismount, and strip to his shirt and on Mr. Manson saying there was a lady in the buggy, he said “Oh, never mind, she need not look this way.” He then asked him for grog, saying he was sure he did not travel without some, and on his producing some, made him drink of it, taking a little of it himself, and handing it over to the others present. He is stated to have taken some £3 from Mr. Manson, and about the same sum from the occupant of the other vehicle. Having detained them some time, he finally left, proceeding, as the subsequent event proves, to near Garry’s place, to carry out his intention of stopping the mail. On the Sydney mail coming up to where he had posted himself, he ordered the mailman to pull up, but offered no violence, and proceeded to rifle the bags. Finding it light, he contemptuously called it “a paper mail,” and pitched the contents back again, suffering the driver to proceed, and even escorting him some distance. He then appears to have met the Albury mail, as stated in the beginning of this account, and making the driver stand at the horses’ heads whilst he proceeded to pull out the bags and search the letters and cheques, then cramming them into the bags again. The mailman says he did not take any cheques, although there were a quantity in the mail, but he could not say whether he got any money. He complained, however, that the mail was a very poor one, and said sticking up was no good on that road now, that it was five or six years back, but that he wasn’t sticking up then. He then permitted the coach to proceed. On Thursday information reached town that two hawkers, named respectively Knight and Stain, were robbed by Morgan on Tuesday morning last, about two miles from Dodd’s, on the Pullitop road. At eight o’clock in teo morning the two men were away some distance from their cart, catching their horses, being about to start on their day’s journey. Morgan rode up to the cart, and taking up two revolvers that were on the foot-board , escorted the men to the cart, and took from them several cheques (which he returned), £10 in notes, and property to the amount of £60, and a horse, saddle, and bridle, with which to convey the booty away. He also took four bottles of gin and two of brandy, and a watch, the latter he returned. Morgan kept the men prisoners till seven o’clock in the evening, chatting freely on different topics, with his gun — a double-barrelled one,out short — at half-cock, but he would not permit them to make a fire, or even have a smoke. They asked him for their revolvers, which he told them they could take after being saturated in a water-hole for a considerable time. Such are the particulars of the week’s work of this ruffian as far as we have been able to gather them, a record to ponder over, and to wonder sorrowfully when it is to end, — Wagga Wagga Express

Spotlight: Execution of Bradley and O’Connor (02/01/1854)

Tasmanian Colonist (Hobart Town, Tas. : 1851 – 1855), Monday 2 January 1854, page 4



Return of Persons Tried and Convicted of Capital Offences in the Colony, of Victoria, and Executed at Melbourne in the year 1853: — George Whitfield Pinkerton, tried at Melbourne, free, for murder; Aaron Durant, Castlemaine, free, robbery with violence with fire-arms and wounding; Henry Turner and John Smith, Castlemaine, bond, robbery and shooting and wounding with intent to murder; George Wilson, George Melville, and William Atkyus, Melbourne, bond, robbery, and shooting and wounding with intent to murder; Patrick O’Connor and Henry Bradley, Melbourne, bond, shooting and wounding with intent to murder; Alexander Ram, Melbourne, bond, murder; Michael Fetuiessey, Melbourne, bond, murder; John Smith, Melbourne, bond, rape. — Totals — free 2, bond, 10. One prisoner sentenced to death for rape, awaits execution. — Argus,

Spotlight: Howe & Co. rob Stocker’s cart (23/11/1816)

Hobart Town Gazette and Southern Reporter (Tas. : 1816 – 1821), Saturday 23 November 1816, page 1

Hobart Town;



Sitting Magiftrate for the ensuing Week,




The depredations of the Bufh-rangers continue to be truly alarming. Scarcely had we mentioned in our laft of their audacious attack on the premises of DAVID ROSE, Efq. at Port Dalrymple, then we are again called upon to relate another daring depredation, committed on Monday laft, at the residence of MR. THOMAS HAYES, at Bagdad, on the road to Port Dalrymple, by one of thofe Banditties of ruffians, who have been too long a terror to the peaceable settler & traveller.— MR. WILLIAM THOMAS STOCKER, his wife, and a cart containing property to a confiderable amount belonging to them, accompanied by MR. ANDREW WHITEHEAD, and family (the former on their way to Port Dalrymple), halted for the night at the premifes of Mr. Hayes.—Soon after, the party were alarmed by the appearance of the Bufh-rangers, headed by Michael Howe & his gang of 8 runaways, who feemed well informed of the intent of their journey; and requefted to know the reason of Mr. S’s delay, obferving, he ought to have been there the day previous.—They carried off the following articles, which had been removed from the cart into the houfe: 2 cafks of rum, one containing 11 and the other 10 gallons; 2 gallons of gin; 30 pair of fhoes; fancy ribbons to the value of £50; 2 bags of fugar, containing about 125lbs each; 1 cheft of green tea; pepper to the amount of £30; 9 pair ftays, &c – The whole is eftimated at upwards of £300 —— What added to the defperate intentions of thefe wretches, they actually fired a pistol through the head of one of the cafks of rum, by which the whole of its contents were loft.

They alfo requefted Mr. Whitehead’s watch, and, from it they regulated other watches they had in their poffeffion (no doubt part of their former booties), they then returned Mr. W. his watch; but Mr. Stocker was not so fortunate, for they compelled him to deliver his watch, which they kept.— From their converfation during the time they continued on the premifes of Mr. Hayes, it evidently appeared they were well acquainted with every tranfaction in town, relative to themfelves; and also, of the bufinefs of travellers journeying between the two fettlements.—Previous to the attack at Mr. Hayes, MR. JOHN WADE, Chief Conftable (being on his way to infpect his flock at Stony-hut Valley), accidentally joined the party at Mr. H’s, but fufpecting the approach of the Bufh-rangers, from the noise he heard while in the houfe, he made all hafte off the premises; his efcape was very fortunate, as from the threats they made ufe of, ferious confequences might have followed his falling in their way.

The property thefe wretches have plundered from the public, fince their efcape into the woods is immenfe; and with reafon we may fuppofe, that it either muft be fold to their accomplices in the two fettlements, or concealed in the woods.—Upon the whole, we may conclude, it will be attended with great rifk to individuals to convey property between the fettlements whilft thefe defperados are at large.

Spotlight: Morgan’s Last Exploit (14/11/1864)

Mercury (Hobart, Tas. : 1860 – 1954), Monday 14 November 1864, page 3


On the subject of Morgan’s last exploit, the Pastoral Times, of the 5th, has the following:

“On Sunday last, Morgan, the murderer, stuck up the Yarrabee Station, on the Yanko. Early in the morning he met two stockmen employed on the station, apprehended them on a charge of horse-stealing, placed them in a hut, and said he should take them to Wagga Wagga. He left the hut for a short time, and on returning, announced himself in his own proper character. In the course of the morning he captured two more prisoners, and keeping the lot in the hut until evening, he marched them down to the home station. Morgan had by this time been joined by a mate, and the two villains then imprisoned every one about the the [sic] station. No violence was committed, but they heated a branding-iron and threatened to brand Mr. Waugh, the Superintendent, and Mr. Apps, the storekeeper. Mrs. Apps, a widow, and daughter-in-law of the storekeeper, offered Morgan jewellery and a £5 note not to carry out his barbarous threat. Morgan declined to receive them, stating he did not come there to rob a poor widow. And this from a murderer! What hypocrisy! He will not rob a widow, but the villain would make one without a moment’s consideration. When he shot McGinnerty did he think of the misery he was inflicting on the sergeant’s family? The shot was fired in cold blood without even an outlaw’s excuse of being in self-defence. The branding, however, was not resorted to, and the only property stolen consisted of two saddles and bridles and clothing out of the store. They burnt all the other saddles and bridles they could find. During the thieves’ stay, one of the station hands asked if he could go; ‘Yes,’ said Morgan, ‘you can if you want to be shot.’ The flaps of Morgan’s saddle were observed to have been cut away, and he stated he had used them for gun wadding. About three o’clock on Monday morning they took their departure, and information was sent to the Urana police. Judging from past experience, the next report in connection with this robbery will be the fact of the police having, in company with a black tracker, followed Morgan until the horses were knocked up, and they were thus forced to abandon the pursuit. This is the stereotyped tale, but the time has come when the public will not longer suffer themselves to be thus befooled. We do not wish to cast blame on the officers and police in the bushrangers’ district, but in the name of the public we demand that the bushrangers shall be hunted down or out of the country. The trackers have often proved their ability to follow a trail, but successful results have failed from horses breaking down. Should such a circumstance stop pursuit? Fresh horses should be borrowed, bought, or impressed and the trail followed at any expense. If the track became effaced, the tracker might make “a cast,” and if found again carry it on. The successful manner in which the Duff children were tracked shows how efficient the natives are, and their ability, if properly supported, to hunt down their quarry. If Morgan and villains of his stamp cannot be caught in this way, they can surely be cleared out of the country, which, under present circumstances, would be a great relief to all residing in the dangerous district.”

Spotlight: Country News (14/11/1863)

Argus (Melbourne, Vic. : 1848 – 1957), Saturday 14 November 1863, page 6



THE POLICE AND THE BUSHRANGERS.— Superintendent McLerie and seven or eight troopers have returned safe and sound to Albury. The gallant fellows are looking remarkably well, and they do not report having been stuck-up or ill treated by the bushrangers, although we believe some of them “sighted” Gilbert or O’Meally, or what is much the same, Gilbert and O’Meally “took sights” at them.

PROCEEDINGS OF A BUSHRANGER.— On Monday morning last, Morgan the bushranger made his appearance at Burrumbuttock, the station of Mr. Gibson, who was absent. He went into the house, ordered breakfast, and he sent one of the men to fetch up Mr. Gibson’s favourite horse. Meanwhile, he turned out all the drawers, &c., and provided himself with a full suit of Mr. Gibson’s clothes. Having breakfasted, he led the horse away, and went to the publichouse at Piney Range: there he remained some time. On remounting, he proceeded to Walbundrie, and at the stock-yard stuck up Mr. Thomas Kidston and four men who were inoculating cattle. He said he wanted the chesnut horse Euclid, and said he would shoot Mr. K. if he did not get the horse up. The stockrider went, and brought the horse in, and Morgan took him away, refusing some pressing invitations to go inside the house. Shortly after leaving Walbundrie, he let Mr. Gibson’s horse loose, having ridden him as far as he wanted. He then went to Bulgandra lower station, where Mr. Gibson was busy shearing. Morgan appeared before him in the suit of clothes which he had taken from Burrambuttock, which was the first intimation Mr. Gibson had of what had been going on at the upper station. After remarking that “he was now Mr. Gibson,” he ordered all the shearers out of the shed, and told the over seer, Smith, to prepare for death, as he would not see the morrow’s sun. The overseer’s wife told him if he killed her husband, he must kill her and the child too, and have three murders to account for. Whether this consideration influenced him or not, he let the overseer off, and went into the house, took a pair of pistols, smashed the overseer’s gun, and made Mr. Gibson sign nine cheques of £30 each, which he gave to the shearers, and told them they were discharged. He also made Mr. Gibson sign one for £95 for himself, and another for £15 to pay a man to go in to get them cashed. He then took leave of Mr. Gibson. That was one day’s work. Early next morning, he called on Messrs. Stitt Brothers, of Walla Walla, and helped himself to various articles which struck his fancy.