James Keys

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James Manning Keys, Weekly Times, 1914


Goldfields Involvement, 1854

Mr James Keys, now a resident of St Kilda, claims to have been in the stockade at Eureka when the British troops made their surprise attack upon the defenders.
Mr Keys was at that time a lad of about 14. His father was the first storekeeper on the Melbourne road, near the Ballarat diggings. Young Keys was prospecting, and mixed with the miners who had decided to defend their rights if need be by force of arms.
He happened to be present at the burning of Bentley's Hotel, one of the notable incidents in the series of disturbances which thrilled the community.
He tells that when the British troops attacked the stockade he sought shelter behind some timbers. He saw Peter Lalor and another leader shot. As is well known, Lalor and others, though wounded, escaped capture. Lalor lost an arm, and lived to become Speaker of the Victorian Assembly. His grand son, also named Peter, is the medical -officer at the Duntroon Military College.[1]

Post 1854 Experiences


See also

Dennis Keys


Further Reading

Corfield, J., Wickham, D., & Gervasoni, C. The Eureka Encyclopaedia, Ballarat Heritage Services, 2004.


  1. Weekly Times,14 February 1914

External links