Who was Ned Kelly and what role did he play in Australian history?

Ned Kelly was an Australian bushranger, or outlaw, who lived in the late 19th century. He was born in Victoria, Australia in 1855, the son of Irish immigrants. Kelly grew up in a poor and rough environment, and by the age of 14, he had already been arrested for theft. He spent several years in and out of prison for various crimes, including horse stealing and assault.

In 1878, Kelly’s mother was arrested for the attempted murder of a police officer, and Kelly and his brother Dan decided to take action against the police. They formed a gang of bushrangers and began a string of robberies and holdups, targeting banks and other wealthy individuals. They also attacked police stations, and in one instance, killed three police officers.

Kelly and his gang, which also included his brother Dan and friends Joe Byrne and Steve Hart, became known as the Kelly Gang. They were considered by many to be Robin Hood-like figures, as they were seen as standing up against the corrupt police and government officials who were oppressing the poor and working-class people.

The Kelly Gang’s activities sparked a massive manhunt, with the police and government offering large rewards for their capture. The Kelly Gang was eventually cornered in Glenrowan, Victoria in 1880, where they made a last stand in the Glenrowan Inn. The police set fire to the inn, and Kelly and his gang were captured or killed. Kelly was severely injured in the battle and was subsequently tried and convicted of murder. He was hanged in November 1880.

Ned Kelly’s legacy is a complex and controversial one. To some, he was a folk hero who stood up against the injustice and oppression of the government and police. To others, he was a violent criminal who deserved to be punished. However, there is no denying that Ned Kelly played a significant role in Australian history. He is remembered as one of the most famous bushrangers in Australian history and his story has been retold in numerous books, films, and songs. Kelly’s story has also been used as a symbol of resistance against authority and a representation of the struggles of working-class people.

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