Ned Kelly’s Final Days, November, 1880.

After a Petty Sessions hearing at Beechworth in August, Ned Kelly was taken to Melbourne, passing through streets thronged with gaping people.
He was deemed fit to stand trial for murder at Melbourne’s Supreme Court on 28 October, 1880.
The judge, Sir Redmond Barry, who had once made the grim promise that he would see Ned Kelly hang, wanted to dispose of the trial in a single day, in order to have it finished before the Melbourne Cup.
The inexperienced barrister defending Ned was no match for an expert prosecutor, a determined judge and a chief Crown witness — the constable who escaped at Stringybark Creek — and who committed perjury.
Barry also misdirected the jury on a vital point of law concerning self-defence.
Inevitably, a guilty verdict was announced. Barry sentenced Ned to hang, concluding with: ‘And may the Lord have mercy on your soul.’ Ned famously retorted: ‘I will see you there, where I go.’
Twelve days after Ned was executed, Judge Barry dropped dead in his chambers on 23 November, 1880.
Ned Kelly’s execution was scheduled for Thursday 11 November, 1880 — only thirteen days after his trial.
A massive movement was launched to save his life. There were huge public meetings, torch-lit marches, a deputation to the Governor, and a petition for Ned’s reprieve from execution.
Three days before the planned hanging, the petition was presented to the Governor with more than 32,000 signatures.
An hour later, the Executive Council announced that the execution would go ahead.
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Image of Ned Kelly taken on November 10, 1880, the day before his execution.
At 9 am on the morning of 11 November, 1880, as a crowd of 5,000 gathered outside the Melbourne Gaol, Ned was transferred to the condemned cell.
Just before 10am, he was led out onto the scaffold.
As the hangman adjusted the hood to cover his face, Kelly’s last words were: ‘Arr well, I suppose it has to come to this. Such… (is life?)’.
At four minutes past ten, the executioner pulled the lever and Ned Kelly plunged into immortality.
His headless body was buried in an unmarked grave on the grounds of the Old Melbourne Gaol.
In the 1920s it was then removed to the Pentridge Prison cemetery.
via Ned Kelly Australian Ironoutlaw | Ironoutlaw.com.

Punishing Forgery with Death.

William Dodd, an Anglican priest, was imprisoned for counterfeiting and then hanged in 1777. Image Courtesy Getty.
Is the death penalty ever acceptable? And, if so, what kind of criminals should it apply to?
In early nineteenth century England, legal scholar Phil Handler writes, it was clear to authorities that death was an appropriate penalty for forgery.
According to Handler, starting in the early eighteenth century, more laws were passed concerning forgery than any other crime.
Given the growing commercial economy’s reliance on paper credit, both in the form of government currency and in notes of credit offered by private parties, forgery posed a “peculiarly subversive threat” with the potential to topple the entire economic system.
In 1797, a shortage of gold bullion pushed the Bank of England to begin issuing paper notes in smaller denominations of one and two pounds, without being backed up by gold reserves. With the wide circulation of these bills came a rise in forgeries, and forgery prosecutions.
From 1805 to 1818, convicted forgers or counterfeiters represented almost one in three people executed in London and Middlesex, and one in five across England and Wales.
Read on via Source: Punishing Forgery with Death | JSTOR Daily

Harris’s List of Covent-Garden Ladies.

Harris_covent_garden_ladiesHarris’s List of Covent Garden Ladies, published from 1757 to 1795, was an annual directory of prostitutes then working in Georgian London. A small, attractive pocketbook, it was printed and published in Covent Garden, and sold for two shillings and sixpence.
A contemporary report of 1791 estimates that it sold about 8,000 copies annually.
Each edition contains entries which describe the physical appearance and sexual specialities of about 120–190 prostitutes who worked in and around Covent Garden.
Through their erotic prose, the lists’ entries review some of these women in lurid detail.
While most compliment their subjects, some are critical of bad habits, and a few women are even treated as pariahs, perhaps having fallen out of favour with the lists’ authors, who are never revealed.Samuel_Derrick,_Master_of_the_Ceremonies_at_Bath
Samuel Derrick is the man normally credited for the design of Harris’s List, possibly having been inspired by the activities of a Covent Garden pimp, Jack Harris.
A Grub Street hack, Derrick may have written the lists from 1757 until his death in 1769; thereafter, the annual’s authors are unknown.
Throughout its print run it was published pseudonymously by H. Ranger, although from the late 1780s it was actually printed by three men, John and James Roach, and John Aitkin.
As the public’s opinion began to turn against London’s sex trade, and with reformers petitioning the authorities to take action, those involved in the release of Harris’s List were in 1795 fined and imprisoned.
That year’s edition was therefore the last to be published, although by then its content was less euphemistic, lacking the originality of earlier editions. Modern writers tend to view Harris’s List as erotica; in the words of one author, it was designed for “solitary sexual enjoyment”.
Read more via Harris’s List of Covent Garden Ladies – Wikipedia

“Kindy Kopped”.

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Grubby Hartshorne had a real perk going.
The Grubs had a swimming pool in his backyard and the water needed to fill it would have cost a lot back in the 1980s (imagine the cost today)
But Grubby had a scam which had been suggested by Alex Riley.
At night the Grubs would climb over the back fence, connect his hose to the Kindergarten tap and fill his pool up with kindy water overnight.
Elsdon decided our Grubby needed to be taught a lesson. He got on the Foreman’s phone and rang Grubs in the Intertype room.
Hartshorne answered and Elsdon said he was from the Water Board, following up a complaint from the Kindergarten behind Grub’s place.
He said that they had witnesses who had seen an overweight and balding man clambering over the kindy fence at night with a garden hose which he connected to the Kindergarten taps.
Well, Grubby absolutely SHIT himself. We were peeping through the door and could see the beads of sweat pouring down his face.
After a few minutes contemplating his future at Yatala Gaol he looked up saw us and realised that he’d been truly had.
Did he stop pilfering the water from the poor little kiddies? Don’t know!
Warren

Quicksand,1950.

Quicksand is a 1950 American film noir. It is a crime film starring Mickey Rooney and Peter Lorre.
It is a story about a young garage mechanic’s descent into crime after he steals $20 to take his girlfriend on a date.
It was directed by Irving Pichel shortly before he was blacklisted by McCarthy’s House on Un-American Activities Committee used to block screenwriters from obtaining employment in the film industry.

This film was a chance for Rooney to play a substantial role that differentiated him from his widely regaled Andy Hardy goody, “good boy” image. It was considered by many to be one of Rooney’s best ever roles.
Source: Quicksand (1950 film) – Wikipedia

The day a young John Monash had a yarn with Ned Kelly.

Photo: General Sir John Monash (1865-1931.
Famous World War One Australian General Sir John Monash was once asked to name two highlights of his life, his reply is absolutely fascinating.
Sir John  replied that one was when he called a council of war just before we broke the Hindenburg line and he other was when he had a yarn with Ned Kelly.
Photo: Ned Kelly, Bushranger (1854-1880).
Sir John gave details on the story about Ned Kelly:
“I was a school kid at Jerilderie,” explained Sir John, “when Ned Kelly and his gang took possession of the township and held it for three days.”
While in Jerilderie Ned Kelly and his men went to some of the hotels in the town, treating everyone civilly.
Bushranger Hart took a watch from the Reverend J. B. Gribble, but returned it to Gribble at Ned Kelly’s request.
The group left about 7 pm in an unknown direction. The disarmed and unhorsed police had no other means of following the gang.
Sir John continued, “That was in February,1879. Like all the other youngsters in the place, I was keen to get a glimpse of the famous outlaw.
So I went round in the morning, rather early, to the hotel which Ned had made his headquarters, and saw him come out of the place and squat on the verandah’s edge to have a smoke.
He beckoned me over, asked me my name, and so forth, and then gave me a short lecture.
A Sunday school superintendent couldn’t have given me better advice as to human conduct..”
Source: Trove Australia and Dennis Grover.