I can cross another big thing off of my list of Big Things to Visit in Australia: the Big Ned Kelly in Glenrowan, VIC.
In case you don’t know, Ned Kelly is one of Australia’s most notorious criminals as well as its only folk hero.
The story goes that he tried to protect his mother Ellen when police harassed her. In the process he shot a police man in his hand, even though no one can confirm his presence at the house at the time of the shooting…
Ned, his brother Dan and their mates Joe Byrne and Steve Hart (later known as “The Kelly Gang”) went into hiding. Ellen Kelly was jailed for aiding and abetting an attempted murder. It went downhill from there…
Although some might say it went uphill as he became some sort of Robin Hood of the colony. They say he protected the weak and stole from the rich. All the while the gang was persecuted by police. Until two years later, when they fought their last battle at Glenrowan (which is why the town has dedicated itself to Ned Kelly).
During the shootout that followed, Dan, Joe and Steve died, and Ned was captured. He was sentenced to death by the same judge who had sentenced his mother years before. On 11 November 1880, de died at the gallows in Melbourne.
He summed it all up with his famous last words:
Such is life.
And maybe it is.
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I wonder which big thing is next… Suggestions?