The true story of Ned Kelly's little sisterRebecca Wilson
4 November 2021
Published by Allen & Unwin
Kate Kelly, the daring sister of legendary bushranger Ned Kelly, was mysteriously found dead in a lagoon outside the NSW town of Forbes in 1898.
At the inquest, Kate’s husband Bricky Foster claimed that she was addicted to drink and frequently spoke of suicide. However, a neighbour testified that she had only known Kate to drink since the recent birth of her baby and that she never spoke of suicide. Was it suicide, accident or murder, and why had she changed her name to Ada?
While only a teenager, Kate rode as a messenger and decoy for the Kelly Gang, and was present at the gruesome Glenrowan siege. After Ned’s execution, she appeared at public gatherings around Australia. Huge crowds came to see her talk and ride, and she helped to popularise the Ned Kelly story as a celebrity in her own right. Then she disappeared from the public eye.
Rebecca Wilson is the first to uncover the full story of Kate Kelly’s tumultuous life. It will surprise anyone who thought they already knew the story of Australia’s most famous outlaw.
‘Rarely told in full, this is the fascinating life of one of the great characters in one of our greatest stories.’ – Paul Terry, author of The True Story of Ned Kelly’s Last Stand
‘Thoroughly recommended not only to those who have an interest in bushranging and the Kelly dynasty but anyone who enjoys a well-written and riveting yarn, based on fact.’ – Rob Willis OAM, National Library of Australia Oral History and Folklore Collections