A look at a rare photograph of Hay Simpson as Ned Kelly in 1934’s When The Kellys Rode, as well as some reviews and artwork related to the film. Continue reading Spotlight: Hay Simpson as Ned Kelly
The former Burmese cargo ship Success was converted into a floating prison in the 1850s as the influx of immigrants seeking their fortunes on the goldfields caused the crime rates to explode. As a result, to alleviate the overcrowding of the prisons, the government purchased a set of abandoned ships (Success, Deborah, Lysander, President and Sacramento) and had them fitted out with cells.
The Success was the only one kept intact when the ships were decommissioned. Continue reading Spotlight: The Floating Museum
James Saunders was born at Big River, (Ouse). At 18 months old, James was left by his father with a woman at Perth. This woman raised him until he was 5 years old and he was given the name Sutherland. He was then fobbed off on a woman at Evandale, who looked after him until he was 11. James was then kicked out and left to his own devices. He tried to make his way back to Perth, but was arrested and tried under the vagrancy act. He was sentenced to 3 months in gaol. When he got out of … Continue reading Spotlight: Portrait of James Sutherland
In the 1860s printing technology did not allow for photographs to be published in newspapers so photographs were copied by artists and turned into etchings – a kind of engraving that could be used as a stamp. The quality of … Continue reading Spotlight: Ben Hall, The Bushranger (etching)
The folk song The Wild Colonial Boy is known around the world and has been sung by artists as wide ranging as the Clancy brothers and Mick Jagger. Despite the popularity, very few know of the inspiration for the song: seventeen year old John Doolan. Continue reading Spotlight: Mugshot of Jack Doolan
This engraving and accompanying text were featured in the Sydney Mail, December 13, 1879. Continue reading Spotlight: Special Police Parade
A studio portrait of Jimmy Nesbitt of the Wantabadgery bushrangers. Continue reading Spotlight: Portrait of James Nesbitt
As technology did not exist to replicate photographs in print at the time, artists employed by publications were given the task of dramatising events in illustrations or producing portraits of the key players based on descriptions or existing photographs. Continue reading Spotlight: Scott (Moonlite)
This engraving of Ben Hall was published twenty days after his death. Continue reading Spotlight: Ben Hall, the Bushranger.
In 1867 Thomas and John Clarke were the most wanted men in Australia. With a reward of £1000 for Thomas and £500 for John, the hunt was on for two of the most notorious bushrangers in New South Wales. Continue reading Spotlight: “Thomas and John Clarke, bushrangers, from a photograph taken in Braidwood gaol”