For someone who doesn’t believe Ned Kelly was present when Fitzpatrick claimed to have been shot in the wrist by him, Mick Fitzsimons wastes an enormous amount of energy trying to prove there couldn’t have been anything wrong with Neds revolver! If Ned wasn’t there, who cares about the capabilities of his revolver?
Fitzsimons believes Ned Kelly was telling the truth when he said he was 400 miles away at the time, but almost everyone else thinks Kelly was lying because 400 miles away would place him somewhere north of Sydney, out at Broken Hill, near Adelaide or maybe in Tasmania. 400 miles away from Greta is a very long way, especially on a horse! There are lots of other reasons besides that ridiculous claim to believe Kelly was lying, and its going to be fascinating reading when Fitzsimons explains, as he has repeatedly said he would, why Neds brother Jim Kelly, Ian Jones, Max Brown, and Alex Castles, among many are wrong in their belief that he Ned was home that night and that his story is lies.
Even Ned Kelly later admitted that he was there and that he fired at Fitzptrick!
In his latest and now extremely rare and universally unsuccessful attempts to discredit Ian MacFarlanes book “The Kelly Gang Unmasked” Fitzsimons asks “Was Neds Pistol Faulty?”, which of course is exactly the same question MacFarlane asked in his book.
MacFarlane wrote “ We will never know exactly what the problems with this revolver were since it was stolen in Chicago in 1976” but says “ ..there was something seriously wrong with this revolver or its ammunition”. He then provided a detailed examination of the various problems associated with the use of the 1849 Colt Pocket revolver. Fitzsimons confused and rambling response shows he has missed the point completely : all MacFarlane was demonstrating was that there are many POSSIBLE ways in which these old revolvers can fail, or can discharge a bullet that could create the type of wound Fitzpatrick received, and therefore Fitzpatricks account is entirely plausible.
Does Fitzsimons want to say these revolvers NEVER misfired, ALWAYS worked perfectly, that the powder was ALWAYS perfectly made and NEVER damp? Unless he is prepared to state that these revolvers worked perfectly every time, then the argument is perfectly legitimate : revolvers sometimes don’t work the way they are meant to and therefore could INDEED produce a wound like the one Fitzpatrick sustained.
He (Fitzy) wrote “MacFarlane claims Ned only used a third of the 12.5 grams of black powder..” No he doesn’t! MacFarlane, in developing his discussion about what could go wrong wrote “ PERHAPS , to conserve powder…Ned only used a third of the required amount…” So here, Fitzy is criticizing something MacFarlane didn’t say…However I am sure MacFarlane will be sure to correct the obvious typo about grains and grams.
He (Fitzy) wrote “Ned and the Boys had plenty of target practice at Bullock Creek, so would have had the right amount of powder for the weight and type of bullet they used and would have had this down to perfection. The trees around their camp were full of holes where they had fired into and dug out the bullet to melt down and re-use.” Well, yes but this all happened AFTER the Fitzpatrick incident so, Fitzys argument here simply has no relevance.
He (Fitzy) wrote “MacFarlane claims that the Gang had difficulty using them as they could not get the correct ammunition (bullets) and had to ‘cut down’ bullets with a knife to fit! MacFarlane offers no citation for this claim to its authenticity! So we have no idea what exactly he means by ‘cut down’ bullets. This is obviously his unsubstantiated opinion!” In fact here MacFarlane is quoting from the Ovens and Murray Advertiser of July 1880, where it reports the finding at Glenrowan after the siege of a discarded Kelly Gang revolver : “It, when found was loaded in each of the six chambers with a cartridge too large for it and and which had been cut down (evidently with a knife) to the required size.”Fitzy is here simply yet again ignorant of the facts.
Once again, another attempt fails to discredit the Kelly Gang Unmasked and the truth it exposed about the Kelly story. Fitzys utterances are based on failure to understand the whole point of that discussion in the book, misrepresentation of what is said, ignorance of facts and irrelevant attacks. This is typical of everything he writes. One can only wonder at the similarly ignorant Facebook supporters of this man who give it 14 “Likes” and write “agree agree agree” and “very well put together” and of MacFarlanes book “it doesn’t remotely match the truth” . As I have shown, this article is rubbish, badly put together and “wrong wrong wrong”.
The problem is these people have very little accurate knowledge about Kelly history. Probably none of them have read or – if they have – still own a copy of MacFarlanes book. Thus they are easily persuaded by anything that ticks all their boxes about Kelly myths, that reinforces their anti-Police mindsets and puts the boot into someone whose research casts doubt on their fond delusions.
What people should do if they REALLY want to know about Kelly history, is read MacFarlanes book and read the several Posts on THIS website on the topic :
THIS Post links to an academics recent research on the Fitzpatrick incident and is brilliant! A MUST READ!
THIS post from November 2014 is about what I called the scandal of the cover-up of the many lies Ned Kelly told.
Read them and perhaps do what I have been blocked from doing, which is respond to this nonsense on his Facebook page with some facts and some Logic. However if you do, prepare to be attacked and rubbished by him and his followers.They cant stand the truth!
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10 Replies to “Another Misfire from the Kelly Dud”
Grains are a bit more complicated than Fitzy realises. The term grains refers to the projectile’s mass or weight.
The grain is commonly used to measure the mass of bullets and propellants. The term also refers to a single particle of gunpowder, the size of which varies according to requirements.
The "grain" is a measure of weight. 1 grain is equal to 1/7000th of a pound. Or 7000 grains are in 1 pound. There are 15.43 grains per gram for those who are metric.
It's just a weird way of saying how heavy something is in firearms. More grains means heavier bullet. For those who get involved in making their own ammunition, the grain is the standard unit by which as things are done as a consistent unit of measure. All bullet weights and powder measures for a particular ammunition load and all reloading data is provided in grains.
Regards to all!
I'm disappointed to hear that the FB hate page about The Kelly Gang Unmasked book is still posting defamatory garbage about it. The author perhaps should have sued him years ago and shut him up.
I think, Dee, that you have demonstrated that the hate page has failed to give even a slight dent to what is a mighty unravelling of the Kelly myth.
Keep doing him slow.
I gather from the above that some apparently still believe Ned Kelly was right when he claimed to have been 400 miles (or some other great distance) away from home, at the time Fitzpatrick swore he was shot in the wrist by Ned. Thanks Dee, for the mention of my 'Redeeming Fitzpatrick' article about the incident, free to download from 'Eras Journal' no. 17.1 (2015).
I spent two pages analysing every piece of evidence ever mentioned about Ned's various claims to have not been present at the time, all of which are shown to be rubbish. He made the longest, '400 miles', claim to his captives at Jerilderie.
Meanwhile back at the ranch, at the Beechworth Assizes, his mother, along with Skillion and Williamson, were on trial for aiding and abetting the attempted murder of Fitzpatrick. Ned's cousin Joseph Ryan swore for the defence that he had brought a horse from Ned for cash on the day, and produced a receipt which he said was written that same evening.
As Ian Jones (in whose 'Short Life' book I first noticed this reference) said, this unquestionably placed Ned in the general area on the day. (For Ryan's evidence see O&M 10 October 1878, p. 5).
Anyone who doesn't like my reconstruction, corroboration and vindication of Fitzpatrick's testimony has to do a lot more than nitpick some minor point, if they find a couple. They have to produce a coherent alternative reconstruction that is at least as well corroborated and cross-referenced with matching source evidence. Since I read every article and reference that anyone had ever cited about the Fitzpatrick Incident, and found over a dozen sources that others had ignored (as they were favourable to Fitzpatrick and the research has all been highly partisan to Ned), all I can say is good luck and happy to respond when they do it.
Ian Jones wrote an impressive, deeply biased and highly revisionist history of Ned Kelly, turning him from murderous crook to good man gone bad through no fault of his own. This all stems from his 'New View of Ned Kelly' talk at the 1967 Wangaratta Conference, with the papers published in 1968 as Man & Myth. I see the 'Short Life' as a 25 year project to provide a justification for Ned based mostly on believing as much of Ned's stories and oral traditions as possible, coupled with a belief that only something as ingenious as a 'mad scheme' republican agenda could explain the armour, sympathisers, and attempted train derailment. I reject this revisionist and romantic history, seeing a violently disturbed murderous crook hell bent on revenge for the inevitable consequences of his own stupid actions. Spectacular, yes; political agenda, no. Funny how both Euroa and Jerilderie has numerous outsiders in town at the time of those bank robberies, all waiting for payday. Republic my foot.
I'm afraid Jones led us all astray regarding crucial parts of the Kelly history. Did he do so deliberately, only time will tell.
The FB hate page about the book is lightweight guesswork. Luckily the book got rave reviews from professional critics such as major Oz and UK newspapers, and in the London Times Literary Supplement by the genius inventor Sir Clive Sinclair.
The FB hate page review, by comparison, is insipid, invalid, vacant trash.
As I expected Fitzy has been reading my Blog and learning some of the facts about Kelly history. As usual like a classic bully he responds from a place that he has prevented me from going to, his Facebook page, from the safety of which he launches into disgraceful personal attacks on me and the other people who post comments to this Blog. Also typical of a bully, he is scared to come here to make his remarks, and creates all kinds of weak excuses why he won't. But in any case his remarks on his FB page are the usual drivel, liked by the usual suspects and as always are a smoke screen that tries to distract from the reality of yet another failure to land a blow on the revelations contained in the Kelly Gang Unmasked. Bluster and bullshit are the only things that sustain the Kelly mythology these days, and Fitzy is the master of it. All the Kelly Myths other supports have been blown out of the water by the research findings of academics like MacFarlane and Dawson.
He even had the cheek to complain that author Macfarlane never replied to his emails!
Facebook isn't serious about stopping people like this or IO.
Kelly history enthusiasts have been far too quick to criticise Ian MacFarlane's 2012 book, 'The Kelly Gang Unmasked'. Yes, it's a very different take, but it was the first book to seriously question the broad Kelly-hero myth that has been in place since Kenneally, almost 100 years ago. I have seen a couple of criticisms of MacFarlane's writing style and reference system, including of his short-form PROV reference numbering. The book's cover notes say that he worked in PROV for over 20 years, so his citation system is correct, and he knows what he is doing.
For anyone not familiar with PROV, if you want to locate one of MacFarlane's references, e.g. 'PROV: VPRS 4965: unit 3: item 155', all you do is type 'VPRO 4965' into Google and click the link there to the exact record set. Then access the records within that. Go to the unit (here, unit 3), and scroll down till you get to item 155. There is no mystery about it.
I had never looked at a PROV record in my life until I was already well into the Fitzpatrick investigation, in September 2014. So anyone can do this, once they know what they want to investigate.
Before that I was just using books and Trove online newspapers, and at that point working my way through all of Peter FitzSimon's 'Ned Kelly' references on the Fitzpatrick Incident. I discovered several curious things, including that his eager team of pro-Kelly researchers had used 'Australian Town and Country Journal' for most of their quoted sources of Fitzpatrick's testimony. Unfortunately for author Peter, the reportage in AT&CJ is in all cases cut-down versions of longer testimony previously published in the Argus or elsewhere, meaning that he was seeing only parts of the available material and could not possibly provide a valid interpretation of the Fitzpatrick Incident from his cited sources, even if he wanted to.
By also generally following Ian Jones' account of the Fitzpatrick Incident, and throwing in considerably more police bashing and mocking (e.g. p. 129, sarcastically and without any analysis of evidence, "the police working out that 2 + 2 = 5"), he has done history no favours. Anyone wanting a starting point to investigate the Kelly story should in my opinion stick with Ian Jones' 'Short Life' (except for chapters 7 & 8), but maintain a healthy scepticism for anything that relies on interpretation rather than evidence.
I made a bad mistake tonight and surfed the anti-The Kelly Gang Unmasked FB hatesite. What a load of piffle. I have the book and that blog "corrects" many 'mistakes' that are not in it. One well-known supporter disagreed that Ned wasn't at 11 Mile Creek during the Fitzpatrick incident as claimed by the blogger. Darren Sutton (often mentioned here) scorned the findings of Dr Russ Scott and MacFarlane that Ned never uttered the words "Such is life" on the scaffold. Sutton mistakenly assumes They thought the execution took place at Pentridge. Oh no they didn't!
This is time-wasting stuff.
The whole hate-page is a gigantic mess of waffle and piffle.
Facebook should take it down immediately.
This will be my last comment in regard to the latest post on the anti Kelly Gang Unmasked FB Page. Readers please note that I responded to this by pointing out some of the many errors it contained – such as where the writer, Fitzy misquoted the book, was WRONG in claiming that MacFarlane had made up something about bullets being cut down with a knife, and absurdly made a claim about target practice AFTER the Fitzpatrick affair. These were just some of the obvious blunders in the post.
What I want to point out is that as usual, Fitzy has responded not with argument about the subject matter but a range of hysterical personal attacks on me, repeating the same stupid claims about my identity – claims I denied emphatically a long time ago and am no longer interested in responding to – repeating the same stupid claims that I post under different names to my own Blog, repeating the same abominable lies about me being a person who made threats to children and posted peoples phone numbers and addresses, and repeating the same lies about my ability to respond on his Facebook Page. The facts are that I WAS once able to Post there, but he has blocked me from doing so and my posts have all been removed. I am not afraid to post there, and would prefer to do so but he was so routinely whipped and humiliated by me when I did that he decided to block me altogether. What a courageous move Fitzy.
I leave it to readers to decide if they would prefer to believe what I write and say on this Blog where anyone polite can post a comment and enter into the debate, or a person who attacks me from the security of a FB page I am banned from, who writes demonstrably wrong claims about a book, who responds to criticism only with lies and personal attacks and never debates the topic, who persists with delusional false beliefs about my identity that have been denied for years, and who is afraid to Post on my Blog where no doubt he would be further exposed as the person who even Kelly supporters have asked to shut up because of the damage they see him doing to their cause.
I agree Ian Jones book is a great read, notwithstanding Jones refusal to accept that Ned wasn’t a magnificent revolutionary but a psychopath who could charm and entertain at one minute and the next ram his revolvers barrel between the teeth of an old man or kill a Policeman or even a former friend who dared challenge him.