The Royal Commission evidence for 28/6/1881
(see also introduction to day 33 )
Sup Francis Augustus Hare giving evidence
Hon. F. LONGMORE, M.L.A., in the Chair;
J. H. Graves , Esq., M.L.A., G. R. Fincham, Esq., M.L.A.,
W. Anderson , Esq., M.L.A., G. W. Hall, Esq., M.L.A.,
E. J. Dixon, Esq., J.P., J. Gibb, Esq, M.L.A.
12286 Did you employ him to watch on behalf of the police, or to give any information?— I had better state exactly what occurred. He came to Benalla shortly alter my arrival there on the second occasion, and told me he had given information privately concerning the Kellys, and said he was anxious to get his son into the police force. I told him we were not taking on any fresh men then, but that if be could give me any information concerning the Kellys that I would do what I could to get his son in the force; in fact, l would guarantee that he should be taken in. Knowing that he lived within a very short distance of the Lloyds, I said to him, “Would you have any objection to take a man to live with you who is in my employ. He is not a policeman, but he has been one.” We had some conversation about it, and at last he agreed to do so, and told me to send him as if in search of work; to come with an old horse that he could turn out in his paddock. without the Crown brand. I made all the necessary arrangements to send a man named Stevens to his house. The man remained there for some time, and left the day after the Kellys were captured. I think he was at Wilson 's place about ten or twelve days, not more. I do not think I saw anything more of Jacob Wilson.
12287 Is it your opinion that he was compelled to leave his selection through fear?— I cannot say that. I know nothing at all about his case whatever. He referred in his evidence to my having put my horses in his paddock. I did so; but I put my horses in many settlers' paddocks whilst I was out searching for the Kellys. Some people there consented, and some I put in without saying a word to them about it, and I paid him for the forage I took for the police horses. It was with his consent I put the horses in. The man was particularly anxious to assist me–I must give him that credit–and did what very few other men would have done, that is, allowed us to send a stranger to his place; and he, I was told by Stevens, watched with Stevens at Lloyd's house. That is all the information I can give on the subject.
12288 When you told him you would do w hat you could to get his son in the police, that was provided he was fit?— Yes, of course.
12289 Are you aware that he is ruptured, and unfit?— I heard Wilson say so here, but nothing beyond that.
The witness withdrew.
The Reverend Matthew Gibney sworn and examined
12291 We just want the few things you know yourself at Glenrowan?— Yes.
12292 Do you remember the taking of the Kellys at Glenrowan?— I came there by the train, I do not know the exact hour the train arrived, but I believe it was the first ordinary train from Melbourne . I was staying in Kilmore the previous night and started then with the train.
12293 It would be about 12 o'clock ?— Coming on twelve, I think.
12294 Did you take any particular notice of what was going on at that time?— I had not heard previous to my getting into the train of the Kelly capture or that the police had found them, but when I came to Benalla I was told there that Kelly was taken, that he was wounded, that the others were stuck up at a place of which I could not remember the name then–that was Glenrowan. I enquired myself if there was any Catholic clergyman there, and I was told no; and then I made up my mind if there was not I would stay to attend first to Kelly, and then to any others I might be called on to.
12295 You were a witness of what occurred after 12 o'clock ?— I was a good deal of the time.
12296 Where were you principally stopping?— I made my way into where Ned Kelly was lying. I understood he was in a dying state at the time.
12297 That was in the station?— Yes.
12298 Did you notice anything that occurred at Mrs. Jones's hotel?— I observed that the police stationed around were firing into the hotel just as the train came up–in fact the firing seemed to be then vigorously carried on.....
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