Today we’re diving into a case from the history books. The legend and anti-hero of Australian folklore. The notorious bushranger Ned Kelly.
While some believe that Ned was an idealist who fought for the rights of the common man. And refused to be bullied by a corrupt police force. Others believe he was a no good, low down criminal who was driven by blood lust and greed.
Once you’ve heard about his exploits, I’d love to hear what you think.
Source material for the case
National Geographic – Feb 12, 1851 CE: Australian Gold Rush Begins
National Museum Australia – Gold rushes
Ned Kelly: Australia’s Original Iron Man
The University Melbourne Archives – The pursuit and capture of Ned Kelly
Brittanica – Ned Kelly: Australian bandit
Ned Kelly: The outlaw who divides a nation
Ned Kelly: Australia’s first iron man
State Library Victoria – Ned Kelly fact sheet
Article about the Aboriginal Trackers who found the Kelly gang
From the Archives, 1880: Ned Kelly captured after shootout in Glenrowan
Ned Kelly’s remains found in mass grave
Ned Kelly movie starring Mick Jagger
Learn everything there is to know about Ned Kelly
The Public Record of Victoria partnered with Google Arts and Culture to compile this amazing, interactive resource. See stacks of original photos, Ned’s letters, police documentation, and more.
Read Ned Kelly's Manifestos
The Cameron Letter
Ned Kelly dictated two letters to Joe Byrne, his official scribe, following the bank heist at Euroa. One copy was sent to the Superintendent of police. And the second was sent to a politician named Donald Cameron.
The Jerilderie Letter
Ned Kelly asked the bank manager of the Bank of NSW to bring this letter to the publisher. After the bank robbery, no less. The audacity! Needless to say, the bank manager broke that promise.
The Kelly Gang went out with a bang
Ned Kelly's Death Mask
Maximilian Kreitmayer, proprietor of the Wax Museum on Bourke Street, made a wax mould of Ned’s head which was then used to make a plaster cast. Plaster casts of criminals’ heads were used to map the terrain of the skull and determine the corresponding characteristics that led to criminality. They were also used as a cautionary tale to would-be criminals.