Does the popular image of the Hall Gang marry up with eyewitness descriptions? Unlike with many earlier bushrangers, witness descriptions of bushrangers in the gold rush era were often quite detailed. Many in the modern day are familiar with the studio portraits of Ben Hall before he became an outlaw, as well as the illustrations of Gilbert and Dunn produced for newspapers, but these images only give us a controlled glimpse. No verified photographs of Gilbert and Dunn exist (the man photographed with Gardiner never having been officially named, and quite possibly a son of Gardiner’s close associate William Fogg), … Continue reading Describing the Hall Gang
The Pastoral Times hears that Mr. Commissioner Lockhart is engaged in the district around Albury in trying to clear the country of the wretched villains who aided and abetted the recently slain murderer. Little mercy should be shown to those who, residing on Crown Lands illegally, gave shelter and food to Morgan while he went forth to rob and kill. It is to be hoped that the other Commissioners of Crown Lands in the Wellington districts, and the country where Messrs. Hall, Gilbert, and Co. carry on their avocations, will see that the powers invested in them are used to rid their districts of the aiders and abettors in these crimes.
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.
Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston, Tas. : 1835 – 1880), Wednesday 22 March 1865, page 6 NEW SOUTH WALES. BEN HALL WOUNDED According to the “Goulburn Argus” of the 8th, there is no doubt that Ben Hall was wounded in the encounter at Mutbilly. That journal says :– He seems to have lost blood on the spot where he fell, but be managed to make his way either on foot or horseback to the Gullen district, and being concealed in a house there, he obtained the assistance of a person, who knew something of surgery, and the ball, which had lodged in … Continue reading Spotlight: Ben Hall Wounded (22 March 1865)
This notorious bushranger, the last of Ben Hall’s gang, after a series of robberies in the northern district of New South Wales, was apprehended about the end of December last and lodged in the lock-up of Dubbo. The police effected his capture entirely by their own exertions; not having received any information of his whereabouts. They took him by surprise, but he did not surrender, until after a most desperate resistance, and until he was unable from his wounds to continue the contest. McHale, the policeman whose bullet disabled Dunn, was, also wounded. When Dunn was secured he treated the affair with the greatest jocularity, remarking that he was tired of bushranging, and had thrown away his gun. Continue reading Spotlight: THE ESCAPE AND RECAPTURE OF DUNN, THE BUSHRANGER (1866)
The town of Goulburn was thrown into a state of great excitement on Wednesday morning last, by a report that Mr. Rossi’s house at Rossiville, only two and a half miles from town had been stuck up the previous night by Hall, Gilbert, and young Dunn. It was at first stated that the robbers had their faces covered when committing the outrage, and this led to the rumour being discredited as to the identity of the men, as it was well known the three individuals named never resort to concealment of their faces; it proved, however, that there had been no concealment. Continue reading Spotlight: Robberies by Hall & Co. (November 1864)
There’s never a stone at the sleeper’s head,
There’s never a fence beside,
And the wandering stock on the grave may tread
Unnoticed and undenied;
But the smallest child on the Watershed
Can tell you how Gilbert died.
By March 1865 the Hall Gang were struggling. The murders of Sergeant Parry and Constable Nelson had elevated these highwaymen to murderers and thus the hunt for them had ramped up. Because of the lowered success from highway robbery, the … Continue reading The Araluen Escort Robbery
Kilmore Free Press and Counties of Bourke and Dalhousie Advertiser (Kilmore, Vic. : 1865 – 1868), Thursday 29 March 1866, page 4 EXECUTION OF DUNN THE BUSHRANGER.Sydney Herald, 20th March A sadder scene was never enacted in that … Continue reading Spotlight: Execution of Dunn the Bushranger
The following detailed depictions of the final form of the Hall Gang give an intriguing insight into the state of the trio in the period between the murder of Sgt. Parry and that of Const. Nelson. The incident is almost … Continue reading Spotlight: Ben Hall’s Gang, December 1864