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Glenrowan's most famous landmark, a huge statue of Ned Kelly.
|LGA:||Rural City of Wangaratta|
Glenrowan is a small town in the northeast of Victoria, Australia. It is 184km northeast of Melbourne and 14km from Wangaratta. It is near the Warby Ranges and Mt. Glenrowan. At the 2006 census, Glenrowan had a population of 952. It used to be on the main road between Melbourne and Sydney, the Hume Highway. The new Hume Freeway now goes around the town.
The first people to live in the area were the Australian Aboriginal tribal group called the Pallanganmiddang. Glenrowan was named after farmers James Hutton Rowan and George Christian Rowan who had large farms in the area between 1846 and 1858. The township was laid out and land sold in 1857. In 1862 Cobb and Co had a stopping place for changing horses on their stagecoaches. The Post Office was opened on February 22, 1870. The small town had a police station, hotels and a boot maker.
In 1873 railroad was built, and the town moved about a mile to be closer to the station. In 1876 the first school was built and Thomas Curnow was the teacher. He would become famous as the Hero of Glenrowan, the man who stopped the train.
The Siege of Glenrowan
It is famous for the bushranger Ned Kelly, who was captured there in 1880 after a siege and shootout with police. The Kelly Gang had captured many of the people living in the town and held them hostage in a hotel. The hotel was called the Glenrowan Inn and was owned by Mrs.Ann Jones. They had pulled up the railway track hoping that the train carrying extra policemen would crash. The school teacher Thomas Curnow got out of the hotel and was able to stop the train. The police surrounded the hotel and began shooting at the bushrangers. It is estimated that 15,000 bullets were fired during the shooting. The Kelly Gang had made suits of armour to stop the bullets from hurting them. The police set fire to the hotel. Eventually Ned Kelly was shot and captured. The rest of the gang, Dan Kelly, Steve Hart and Joe Byrne were killed.
Mrs. Jones took the government to court. She wanted to be paid £1050 for the destruction of her hotel during the siege.
The Town today
Glenrowan is a popular rest point for those travelling on the Hume Freeway. In the township of Glenrowan, off the highway, tourists can rest, walk and examine the famous Kelly siege sites.
- Localhero: History of Glenrowan
- History of the siege of Glenrowan[dead link]
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