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Michael Shanley (1856–1920)

Mr John Cheney, junior, owner of Opossum Plains station, who arrived in Wagga yesterday, tells a pathetic story of the death of a drover and horses in the mountains about Kiandra. Mr Cheney, who is a sheep owner, and knows every inch of the mountain country, where he depastures his sheep every summer, decided to move a couple of mobs from Kiandra. He started on August 11 with 3000 sheep, accompanied by Michael Shanley, 64 years of age. They brought the sheep to Lob’s Hole, a distance of 10 miles, in four days. The snow was thick everywhere, and barrels had to be drawn through the snow to make a track for the sheep. Every creek had to be bridged, and at one place a dray was placed for the sheep to cross on. On the afternoon of their arrival at Lob’s Hole Shanley started for Kiandra, intending to go on to Adaminaby, and Cheney intended starting back next morning to move another mob of sheep to Cooma. Four feet of snow fell at Kiandra over-night, and a woman named Forstram walked four miles through the snow from a ravine to warn Cheney that a message from Kiandra by telephone stated that the snow was too deep. As no news was received of Shanley a search party was organised, and it set out on snow shoes to search the drifts. After three days the party found a huge hole in a drift about 20ft deep. With difficulty the snow was cleared away, and the unfortunate man Shanley and two horses were found at the bottom frozen to death.

Original publication

Additional Resources

Citation details

'Shanley, Michael (1856–1920)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 29 November 2023.

© Copyright Obituaries Australia, 2010-2023

Life Summary [details]


Adaminaby, New South Wales, Australia


11 August, 1920 (aged ~ 64)
Kiandra, New South Wales, Australia

Cause of Death