LAWLESS – The Real Bushrangers Interactive Scenes


Episode Four


Lethbridge’s Pocket Map

Instructions: Move mouse over coloured pin icons in the below Lethbridge’s Pocket Map to read information.

 


It is Easter Sunday, 1902 when a police party is sent out to arrest Patrick and James Kennif  in what is the northern part of today’s Carnarvon National Park in Queensland. Although mystery still surrounds the exact events of the day, the account of the sole survivor of the attack – Aboriginal tracker Sam Johnson – is the key evidence for investigation. His story goes, that after a confrontation with the Kenniff brothers at Lethbridge’s Pocket and a dramatic horseback chase through the bush, Constable George Doyle and Albert Christian Dahlke (the manager of nearby Carnarvon Station) manage to capture James Kenniff and get him off his horse.

Whilst Sam Johnson fetches handcuffs from a nearby packhorse he hears five shots and suddenly finds himself being pursued by the Kenniffs. Johnson escapes, alerting police at Mitchell. Two days later a grim discovery is made – 125 kg of charred and mutilated remains of Doyle and Dahlke are found stuffed in police-horse packsaddles – the animals roaming aimlessly near where the men were last seen. The bodies of the two men were apparently cremated on a large, flat rock in a creek bed, nowadays known as the ‘incineration site’.

One of Queensland’s largest manhunts ended three months later when the brothers were arrested without a fight near Mitchell. They were put on trial in 1903. It was decided during the trial that Patrick Kenniff fired the fatal shots, whilst James was standing with Doyle and Dahlke. James was sentenced to life imprisonment and Patrick, proclaiming his innocence to the end, was hanged. James was released from jail in 1918 and died in 1940.

James never spoke of the crime again.


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Interactive Scene 1
Interactive Scene 2


Explore the interactive scenes below by rolling your mouse over outlines and icons for information.

Interactive Scene 1 – Corporal Sam Johnson hears gunshots


Interactive Scene 2 – Who Killed Doyle & Dalhke?


Episode Three


Billabong Creek Map

Instructions: Move mouse over coloured pin icons in the below Billabong Creek Map to read information.

 


One of history most popular Bushrangers, Ben Hall, was shot and killed by police on 5 May 1865, after a three-year crime spree in central West NSW. An informant had led the police party to Hall’s camping spot near Billabong Creek northwest of Forbes and they waited in ambush for him to arrive.

According to inquest statements by Sub-Inspector James Davidson who led the search for Hall, and his second-in-charge Sergeant James Condell, Ben Hall was identified on the night of May 4th 1865, while he camped in the scrub.  The police surrounded his camp and waited in ambush.

Davidson claims that early on the morning 5 May, as Hall walked to collect his horses he was called on to surrender. When he didn’t, Davidson fired the first shot as Hall turned and ran. Hall was then fired upon by Condell, Aboriginal tracker Billy Dargin, four more constables and another tracker. Hall was gunned down and killed in the ensuing melee.

When Ben Hall’s body was returned to Forbes and placed on public display, the sight of his bullet riddled remains triggered public outrage. Despite the police account that Hall was gunned down while trying to escape, rumours were rife amongst the locals that the police had outright executed Hall without giving him the chance to surrender.


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Interactive Scene 1
Interactive Scene 2
Interactive Scene 3


Explore the interactive scenes below by rolling your mouse over outlines and icons for information.

Interactive Scene 1 – Tracker Billy Dargin shoots Ben Hall in his sleep.


Interactive Scene 2 – Ben Hall ambushed by Sub-Inspector James Davidson police party

Interactive Scene 3 – Ben Hall is gunned down and killed in the melee


Episode Two


Wantabadgery Map

Instructions: Move mouse over coloured pin icons in the below Wantabadgery Map to read information.

 


In October 1879, after a series of run-ins with the law, a failed career change and the inability to find work in Victoria, Andrew George Scott [Captain Moonlite], his closest friend James Nesbitt, and 4 young men headed to NSW – specifically to the Wantabadgery region where they hoped to find work.

At Wantabadgery Station, their hopes were crushed. The despair and humiliation of being denied food and shelter led Scott on a path of destruction, which soon spiralled out of control.   Moonlite and his gang armed themselves and held the occupants captive for two days. , When the police eventually arrived, a brief exchange of gunfire convinced them to withdraw and await reinforcements. Moonlite and his gang took advantage of their absence and made their way to nearby McGlede’s Farm. Before they could leave, a party of police from Wagga and Gundagai arrived.

A fresh and violent gun battle began, eventually resulting in the death of two bushrangers:  James Nesbitt (22) and Augustus ‘Gus’ Wernicke (15). Senior Constable Edward Webb-Bowen was mortally wounded from a bullet to his neck, and died 6 days later. Moonlite, and his three surviving gang members, surrendered and were taken into custody.  At their subsequent trial they were convicted of murder and sentenced to death.  Scott (aka Moonlite, 35) and Thomas Rogan (22) were hanged on January 20th 1880.  Colleagues Thomas Williams (19) and Graham Bennett (20) had their sentences commuted to life imprisonment – it is alleged that this was primarily based on their respective ages.


Explore the interactive scene below by rolling your mouse over the coloured icons for information.

Interactive Scene – The Killing of Constable Webb Bowen


Episode One


Stringybark Creek Map

Instructions: Move mouse over coloured pin icons in the below Stringbark Creek Map to read information.

 


At Stringybark Creek on the 26th of October 1878, Ned Kelly, Dan Kelly, Steve Hart and Joe Byrne ambushed a police campsite. At the time of the attack, only Constable Thomas Lonigan and Constable Thomas McIntyre were at the camp. McIntyre claimed that he was unarmed and immediately surrendered. But Constable Lonigan started to run and as he reached for his revolver, Ned Kelly shot him dead. When Sgt Michael Kennedy and Constable Michael Scanlan arrived back at the campsite Scanlan was shot while attempting to untangle the rifle strapped to his back while Kennedy drew his revolver, and was pursued by Ned Kelly. Ned said that he shot the wounded Sergeant in the chest as “he could not live, or I would’ve let him go.”


Jump to:
Interactive Scene 1
Interactive Scene 2
Interactive Scene 3
Interactive Scene 4


Explore the interactive scenes below by rolling your mouse over outlines and coloured icons for information.

Interactive Scene 1 – Ned Kelly gang ambush the police camp


Interactive Scene 2 – Ned Kelly lies in wait for the other policemen

Interactive Scene 3 – Ned Kelly kills Constable Michael Scanlan

Interactive Scene 4 – Last Moments of Sergeant Michael Kennedy