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John McNally (1826–1856)

Intelligence was received on Saturday morning last, at the Detective Office, that on the preceding Thursday, the 16th inst., two of the mounted police force, Sergeant [John] McNally and Constable Moore, proceeded at seven o'clock on the night in question to a tent believed to be occupied by the notorious William Turner, alias Gipsy Smith, who stands charged with various acts of highway robbery, and with dismounting a constable from his horse near Castlemaine several months ago, and with escaping from custody. On approaching the tent, the officers recognised Turner, who attempted to make his escape. The officers immediately closed with him, and, during the struggle, shots were fired from the tent, one of which entered the breast of Sergeant McNally, who fell dead on the spot. Several other shots were fired, and wounded the constable (Moore) severely in the face and other parts of the body. As soon as the intelligence reached the Camp at Mount Ararat, the police went in search of the bushrangers, who, however, succeeded in eluding their vigilance. A woman was arrested in the tent. An active search is in progress, and it is thought the criminals cannot long escape detection. The gang, supposed to be under the leadership of Turner, is, without doubt, the same as that which committed the late daring acts of bushranging near Moliagul.

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Citation details

'McNally, John (1826–1856)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 17 June 2024.

© Copyright Obituaries Australia, 2010-2024

Life Summary [details]




16 October, 1856 (aged ~ 30)
Ararat, Victoria, Australia

Cause of Death


Cultural Heritage

Includes subject's nationality; their parents' nationality; the countries in which they spent a significant part of their childhood, and their self-identity.