Duncan Brown was awoken by a noise outside his Wahgunyah farmhouse in northern Victoria around 1.00 am on 2 June 1869. ‘I went to the door and was in the act of opening it, when some person sprung at me with a yell – and struck at me with a knife’, Duncan Brown said in his witness statement. It was Wee Cow who had lunged at him as they wrestled. Duncan warned his daughters that Wee Cow had a knife. Brown’s daughter Agnes fetched her brother Donald from his nearby house. Donald arrived to find his father covered in blood, holding Wee Cow down. He tied Wee Cow up with a clothes line. The previous day Wee Cow had begged Agnes and her sister, Margaret who were home alone, for some food. Wee Cow kept returning for more, and they had to call Donald to chase him away. In April 1870, Wee Coe was found guilty for wounding with intent to murder and sentenced to death. A review commuted the sentence to twenty years imprisonment on account of temporary insanity.


  • Title: Wee Cow Prisoner Number 8761 Prison Register Page
  • Date Created: 1870-08-04
  • Provenance: VPRS 515/P0, Central Register of Male Prisoners, unit 13, folio 152
  • External Link: Digital Archive File

Get the app

Explore museums and play with Art Transfer, Pocket Galleries, Art Selfie, and more

Google apps