|INSIDE ABERCROMBIE CAVES. Source: blayney-nsw.|
|ABERCROMBIE CAVES. Source: panoramio.com|
By the time the rebels had reached the caves, their numbers had markedly reduced. Most probably saw impending doom but there was a hard core of fourteen still led by Entwistle, ready to fight it out.
Resting in the Abercrombie Caves, the rebels continued to the top of a waterfall where they decided to camp. It was here that the troopers and the volunteers finally caught up with the rebels.
The gun battle lasted for over an hour. By the end of it, two troopers were dead and Daniel Geary (my great,great, great grandfather) was badly wounded in the right shoulder. The rebels retreated back to the caves, losing their horses in the process.
The troopers continued to follow, searching the dark labyrinth of caves; trying to flush out the rebels. The rebels eluded the troopers, escaping the caves and heading to a hill now known as Bushrangers Hill ( A bushranger is an Australian outlaw).
|BUSHRANGERS HILL. Source:snucklepuff.|
Unfortunately, this is where they met the soldiers who had marched from Sydney. Although vastly outnumbered, the rebels decided to go down with a fight. In the firefight, another two soldiers and two rebels were wounded. Eventually, the rebels were totally surrounded and arrested. The two wounded rebels died whilst being taken back to Bathurst and another three managed to escape.The remaining ten, including Entwistle were hung on the 2nd November 1830 in Bathurst at a spot now called Ribbon Gang Lane.
As for Daniel Geary, he was invalided out of the police and granted a pension for life. As a result of his shoulder wound he was never able to again raise his right arm above his elbow. Call it bureaucratic madness, because he still had to report to a government doctor every year to prove it hadn’t got any better! More about Daniel Geary in my next blog.