Sunday

Who was Harry Power?

Harry Power


Harry Power was born Henry Johnson in Ireland in 1820 and came to Australia in 1842 as a convict for stealing a pair of shoes or a saddle depending on who you believe. (see SOURCES below) .
 
He Stole a Saddle and bridle and was overtaken illegally using a blood horse, and with this act his career in Ireland came to an end. He was convicted and sent out in 1838, under the name of Johnston, and adhered to that name until he became a ticket-of-leave man. Dropping the surname, for obvious reasons, and under the impression that Power would carry him safely over any likely obstacle he began the life of a highwayman. Like scores of his class in the early days he rob-bed and plundered wherever he could, and no one has any idea of the numerous thefts he was mixed up in with...*

Harry Power was an Australian bushranger who, some believed, gave Ned Kelly his start on a life of crime. The career of Henry Power, the Victorian bushranger who served a life sentence imprisonment at Pentridge, is extraordin-ary in its cunning and daring, and made even more remarkable from the fact that the Kellys, the Harts, the Byrnes, the Quinns, the Lloyds, and other horsestealers and lawless young men in the Wangaratta and Strathbogie country, were all his con-fidants and pupils, and supplies the true and only key to the rise of the fiendish Kellys...

SOURCES:
  • * Australian Dictionary of Biography  Ian F. McLaren, 'Power, Henry (Harry) (1820–1891)', Australian Dictionary of Biography, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University
  • LIFE OF A BUSHRANGER POWER  in Western Mail (Perth, WA : 1885 - 1954) (Perth, WA: National Library of Australia). 5 February 1910

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