Australia’s Most Notorious Bushrangers: Tales of Crime and Infamy

Uncategorized By Mar 16, 2023

Australia has a long history of notorious bushrangers who committed daring robberies, murders, and other crimes in the country’s vast wilderness to elude authorities. Some of the most famous outlaws include Ned Kelly, captain Thunderbolt, Daniel Morgan, and the Kelly Gang. These bushrangers became folk legends and inspiration for various works of art, capturing the imaginations of many Australians and visitors. Most bushrangers were eventually caught or killed by the police after long pursuits, while a few, like Ned Kelly, became symbols of rebellion and resistance to some Australians.

Australia’s Most Notorious Bushrangers: Tales of Crime and Infamy

Australia has a rich history of notable outlaws and bushrangers – individuals who took to the country’s vast and unforgiving wilderness to elude authorities and carry out daring robberies, murders, and other crimes. From Ned Kelly to Captain Thunderbolt, the exploits of these notorious bushrangers have been the subject of countless books, films, and folklore, capturing the imagination of many Australians and visitors to the country alike. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at some of Australia’s most infamous bushrangers and the deeds that made them a legend.

HTML Heading: Ned Kelly – Australia’s Most Celebrated Outlaw

Perhaps the most well-known and celebrated bushranger in Australian history is Ned Kelly, who led a gang of outlaws in the late 1800s. Born in Victoria in 1854, Kelly was raised in a family of poor Irish immigrants and was no stranger to conflict with the law. Over the years, he became a cunning and resourceful fugitive, often outsmarting police and creating headlines across the country with his brazen heists and audacious escapes.

Kelly’s most famous act of rebellion occurred in 1878 when he and his gang took hostages during a robbery in Glenrowan, Victoria, eventually leading to a face-off between the outlaws and the police. The siege ended with Kelly donning his iconic homemade iron armor and charging at the law enforcement officers, leading to a hail of gunfire and his eventual capture.

HTML Heading: Captain Thunderbolt – The King of the Road

Another popular figure in Australian outlaw folklore is Captain Thunderbolt, whose real name was Frederick Wordsworth Ward. Born in New South Wales in 1835, Ward was apprenticed as a stockman and became well-versed in the art of bush survival. He turned to a life of crime after being falsely accused of theft, and soon became one of the most notorious bushrangers in Australia.

Captain Thunderbolt gained his nickname thanks to his fleet-footedness and his ability to outrun police on horseback, earning a reputation as the “King of the Road.” He carried out numerous daring robberies throughout New South Wales and was eventually gunned down by police in May 1870.

HTML Heading: Daniel Morgan – The Wild Colonial Boy

Daniel Morgan is another legendary bushranger in Australian history, known for his violent temper and general lawlessness. Born in New South Wales in 1830, Morgan had a tough childhood and turned to a life of crime at an early age. He soon racked up numerous charges of theft, assault, and other crimes, and spent much of his life on the run from the law.

Morgan gained notoriety for his daring raids on banks, coaches, and travelers throughout New South Wales and Victoria, earning him the nickname “the Wild Colonial Boy.” He evaded police for years, but was eventually tracked down and shot dead in 1865.

HTML Heading: The Kelly Gang – Australia’s Most Infamous Outlaws

The Kelly Gang, led by Ned Kelly, was one of the most notorious and feared bushranging gangs in Australian history. Comprising Kelly’s brother, Dan, and two other accomplices, Steve Hart and Joe Byrne, the gang carried out numerous robberies, murders, and other crimes throughout Victoria in the 1870s.

The Kelly Gang’s most infamous act of rebellion was the previously mentioned siege at Glenrowan in 1878. The gang had taken hostages in an attempt to derail a train filled with police officers, but their plan was foiled, and the four outlaws were eventually captured or killed. Ned Kelly himself was executed by hanging in November 1880, becoming a symbol of rebellion and resistance to many Australians.

HTML Heading: The Legend of Australian Bushrangers

The legacy of Australia’s bushrangers lives on to this day, inspiring countless books, films, and works of art. The exploits of these notorious outlaws have become a part of Australian folklore, captivating the imaginations of generations of Australians and visitors alike.

FAQs Section in HTML

Q: Who was the most famous bushranger in Australian history?

A: Ned Kelly is widely considered to be the most famous bushranger in Australian history, thanks to his daring exploits and iconic appearance.

Q: What was the main motivation behind bushrangers’ crimes?

A: Many bushrangers were driven by a desire for wealth and adventure, and often turned to crime as a means of survival. Others were motivated by a sense of rebellion against authority and the injustices of society.

Q: How did bushrangers survive in the harsh Australian wilderness?

A: Bushrangers had to be skilled in bush survival techniques, such as tracking, hunting, and living off the land. They often formed alliances with sympathetic locals, and took advantage of the vast areas of wilderness that provided ample hiding places.

Q: What was the fate of most bushrangers?

A: Most bushrangers were eventually caught or killed by police, often after a long and difficult pursuit. Some, like Ned Kelly, became folk heroes and symbols of rebellion, while others were largely forgotten by history.