I HAVE BEEN ATTACKED by leaches
at Stringybark creek, and I have caught some of the most nastiest
colds and flu's walking around the Glenrowan siege site at early
Yes I have done it all! I have tried
to find all the Kelly sites, some with success, others without,
but my favourite gang member was of course Ned Kelly. Until, one
day I thought of Joe and how quiet his story is; nobody seems to
really know about him. When I attended the commemorative dinner
at Glenrowan, to celebrate the anniversary of the siege at Glenrowan,
Joe's armour was the main feature, Seeing his armour close made
it the last straw; I now decided to do a Joe Byrne site.
The reason Joe is my
Ned, Dan and Steve is because of his loyalty to Ned, he was so loyal
to Ned, he claimed after Aaron was told by Joe to tell Nicolson,
that rather than give himself up, and escape the death penalty,
would die at Ned's side first...” Now that
coming from a man, who was reported around the Woolshed where Joe
and Aaron grew up, that he was a quiet and likable lad, completely
As Joe's death at Glenrowan was well
recorded by James and Kate Reardon, Dan and Steve's was more preserved.
Ned's was the best recorded.
a Joe Interest?
At an age of 9, my
step father, Gary Boness, my mother Lynne and myself, drove through
a township, which in turn was noted for " The scene of the
Kelly siege " I was enthralled, as we drove through this quiet
beautiful hamlet, I finally persuaded my mother to stop the car
for a look around town, as I stepped into Kate's Cottage, I heard
a lot of the word " Kelly " I had to know who this was.
I purchased my first Kelly book, "Ned Kelly: The Larrikin Years
" by Graham Jones.
As we were leaving
town, my mum said we should stay the night, I was over the moon.
We stayed at the local caravan park, and that night went to Bob
semi - live show, which at an age of nine for anyone who has
ever been in the show would know is very exiting I learnt of Aaron
Sherritt who at that time I was under the understanding he was a
Right: My mum, putting on a brave face after a trip to
The show introduced
me to the Kelly gang, at the end of the show, I was all exited of
how, I was going to learn all about the Kelly gang, and in my own
words " I will write a book about them " I remember this
well because I remember my dad saying that I was going to lose interest
one day. I didn't listen.
On our return to
our caravan, mum and Gary virtually went straight to bed, I sat
up and read this story of Australia's most unique figures, and before
I knew it, I had read half of the book. At the age of nine, I had
read the most amazing story in my whole life.
was over whelmed and next morning I was first up, and began hoeing
into my new book again and had finished it before every one was up.
I know knew the Kelly story better than any other nine year old.
That book lead me to my life as it is know, and as I think back, if
I hadn't picked up that book that day, I wouldn't
be who I am today.
That day and night
in Kelly Country had effected me forever,
and pushed me
from boy hood into the world of the Kelly gang. As I grew older and
older trips into Kelly Country became frequent, my life was taking
shape. I remember many of these trips, and the excitement before
getting there, was un bearable.
Left: Joe Byrne at 'Buffalo Mountain Wines' Glenrowan.
At 14 my life was there in front of me I had to just take it, and
that I have, and are pursuing the Kelly gang, Meeting Matt and
Brendan, introducing me to Ian Jones, noted Kelly Arthurian, Ned:
the exhibition, and the mates I have gained over the years
has been un - real, an after returning from that trip,
on the day of school, I had drifted from my child hood friends and
pulled into the new world.
trip to Joe Byrne's homestead site,
changed me forever; Joe,
was beginning to tower over Ned and the boys, and becoming my
favourite. Then, seeing his armour at the centenary dinner, was the
last straw, I had to study Joe. Now he is my world.
High school became
another hard factor, my mates would want me to come out after school,
I have no time, I am always reading the Kelly books or updating
this webpage. My life will continue to be the Kelly gang way it
If you have any questions,
queries, feel free to
DINNER, GLENROWAN 28TH JUNE 2002.
gang centenary dinner, to commemorate the siege at Glenrowan 122
years previous. I attended this dinner which I must say was very
good, I will guide you through the events which took place at this
very special event.
At 7pm I arrived
at the door, waiting there, it was a cool night, the cool breeze
was lovely, as we (Rod and Chris Gerrett
& Myself) shuffled in through the door,
and we yacking in each others ear for the passing of the next few
minutes, me and Ian Jones had a quick chat, then the main event
of the evening had arrived on horse
back, Joe's Armour was been ridden into the famous battle site of
the police and the gang, I thought I seen a few tears roll down
some eyes once or twice during
the night. As the armour was carefully taken from the horse, it
was walked through the mounting crowd, and was set up inside, the
excitement of getting into the next room was un bearable, eventually
we moved onto into the next room, we were seated, and all began
All focus was on
the armour, everyone seemed to be hovering around it, I waited until
everyone cleared, and I got my look, and I was moved inside, I took
notes in my mind of how it looked, and eventually, I sat down and
waited for the tucker.
But I couldn't keep
still in my seat; I wanted to touch the armour, but I must admit,
the security guards there did do a good job. One bloke got a "
Feel " of the outlaw armour, but was quickly, " Sent in
right path " if you get my drift......
Along came the food;
but I wasn't too concerned about filling my stomach, I still wanted
too touch that armour, as I glared at it from my seat, I couldn't
believe it was actually here, at the famous siege site, were I thought
it would never return.
A few speeches were
made, funding for the Kelly Tourism in Glenrowan, and, also that
this event will be a yearly event,
which is great news, Joe Online will keep you posted when the next
one is almost looming.
I walked outside
to view the peaceful and my personal favourite site of the Kelly
gang. More speeches came, and then, Ian Jones took the microphone
and blasted us with his Kelly expertise.
His speech was amazing,
moving and spectacular, I recorded his speech on my hand held recorded,
and listen to it very often. Some of the highlight's were:
arrived to see his best mate, Joe
moved, after Ian's talk, Ashley Davies
lit us up in lights with his new Ned Kelly
cd, and the Last Stand track, also made me withdraw the
Handkerchief again. The last stand moved me again, and it was so
good, being at the siege site listening to the sounds of the Last
Stand. I felt for Joe then...
night rolled on, the music from the sheds filled the coldness of
the Kelly Country breeze, and me and Ian began to talk about the
site of Ned's capture. Eventually, the night had ended, I watched
as the armour was packed away, and we were off talking we were the
last to leave, and, enjoying the night thoroughly, I went around
the siege site for my last look until next morning, and eventually
headed home, enjoying myself to the fullest! I highly recommend
anyone who wishes to go you will not regret it!
I have had a lot of help and support
in the creation of this website, many people have helped me immensely,
if you think your name deserves to be here
For all his support knowledge, and
just being the best mate of mine that
he is, he is one good fella, Mark, manages to scratch his Kelly
knowledge into text on my other Kelly site
Mark, I can't express how much you have helped, backed me, and plainly
always been there for when I needed him most.
AND BRENDAN PEARSE
With these two where do I start?
Matt and Brendan have basically become brothers to me, and Mark
included we have in my eyes became a small family, I care for them
as much as I would my own brother, and the so many things they have
down, put themselves in difficult positions, to help me. They have
bent over backwards to help me, and I can not be appreciative.
As above I was talking
about our " Family " Me, Matt, Mark & Brendan, are
the children, well Rod and Chris are the parents! Rod and Chris
run the Excellent and may I say the Best Kelly store in the world,
by the name of Kates Cottage, they sell everything Kelly gang. They
have been so supportive, allowing me to help in their Museum, Has
privileged me a lot.
Dave another avid
Kelly sympathizer, has given me help, support and everything I asked
him. His " going out of the way " help, was just so vital
to the creation of this website, we speak to each other on a regular
basis, and are close buddies. Dave has his own Kelly website:
AND NICKY COWIE.
Dave and Nicky have
supported me from the time I mentioned my Joe site to them. They
have given me graphics, and there excellent support and may I add,
their encouraging emails to keep me on the ball, for example:
.... You will rival Jones one day ...
like that inspired me to keep going. Dave and Nicky also have there
own Kelly website at
www.bailup.com have a look!
Good ol' Ashley, we
had a remarkable talk at the Centenary dinner at Glenrowan to commemorate
the siege 122nd anniversary. We spoke for a length and shared equal
views, and Ashley was surprised to see that my favourite was Joe.
Ash inspired me that night. Ashley performed the Wonderful NED
KELLY cd, which has the most remarkable songs, and are
very emotional. Ashley's Ned Kelly songs will be performed
live soon, Joe Online will keep you posted.