Email By Tim Callanan Updated January 09, 2020 07:00:55 Photo: The seawall at Brighton contains markers from the graves of prisoners executed in the 1800s at the Old Melbourne Gaol. (ABC News: Tim Callanan) Map: Melbourne 3000 Along a stretch of Port Phillip Bay, one of Melbourne’s great archaeological stories is slowly being buried beneath tonnes of sand.It’s a tale that has everything: ghastly crimes, executions, exhumations, grave robbery, publicly-funded Great Depression-era mass-employment construction schemes and, of course, Ned Kelly.But it’s a story that’s probably not as well known as it should be. It’s not untold, but it’s definitely under-told.John Conder’s role in the story is small but fascinating and as good a place as any to start.Conder — a Yorkshireman who emigrated to Australia in 1859 — was a prolific felon whose crimes graduated in seriousness on each of the half a dozen times he was jailed in Victoria. Photo: John Conder was hanged in 1893 for the murder of of an Indian hawker. (Supplied: Public Records Office of Victoria) Larceny. Cattle stealing. Bank robbery. Murder.In one of the earlier mugshots in his prison file, he is wild-eyed with a thick, bushy beard, but in the final photo taken… Read full this story
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