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Patrick KenniffPrint Page Print this page

01-November-2017
01-November-2017

Photographs supplied by John Huth

A plaque commemorates the centenary of the execution of Patrick Kenniff in 1903. 

Patrick Kenniff (1865-1903) was an Australian bushranger who roamed western Queensland, Australia, with his brother James Kenniff (1869-1940). They were primarily cattle thieves, but the brothers were found guilty of murder and Patrick was hanged in Boggo Road Gaol in 1903.

When the charred remains of Albert Dahlke and Constable George Doyle of the Upper Warrego police station, who had set out during Easter 1902 to arrest the Kenniffs for horse-stealing, were found in Lethbridge's Pocket, strong suspicion fell on Patrick and James Kenniff. Although he did not see the actual murders, Doyle's Aboriginal tracker, Sam Johnson, heard shooting and when he neared the arrest scene the Kenniffs pursued him, but he escaped. Despite a reward of £1000 and a large police manhunt, they were not taken until 23 June at Arrest Creek, south of Mitchell.

Chief Justice Sir Samuel Griffith presided over the trial in Brisbane. Found guilty of wilful murder, both prisoners were sentenced to death but execution was deferred, pending an appeal. Even before the trial there was much public sympathy for the Kenniffs. This was partly a manifestation of public discontent with unemployment and a drought, and partly a revival of the old antipathy between squatter and cockatoo farmer among New South Wales expatriates. The appeal, financed by funds contributed by supporters, was dismissed by a full bench of the Supreme Court; the only dissenter was Mr. Justice real who was not convinced of James's guilt. Patrick was executed on 12 January 1903 and buried in South Brisbane cemetery with Catholic rites; the sentence of James was commuted to life imprisonment.

Location

Address:185 Annerley Road, South Brisbane Cemetery, Dutton Park, 4102
State:QLD
Area:AUS
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -27.499158
Long: 153.027787
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Details

Monument Type:Plaque
Monument Theme:People
Sub-Theme:Crime
Link: http://adb.anu.edu.au/

Dedication

Actual Monument Dedication Date:Sunday 12th January, 2003
Front Inscription

Plaque:
To Commemorate the
Centennial of the execution of
PATRICK KENNIFF
Related families &
Members of the community
gathered here on
Sunday 12th January, 2003

 
Source: MA, ADB
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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