People Australia

  • searches all National Centre of Biography websites
  • searches all National Centre of Biography websites
  • searches all National Centre of Biography websites

Browse Lists:

Cultural Advice

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people should be aware that this website contains names, images, and voices of deceased persons.

In addition, some articles contain terms or views that were acceptable within mainstream Australian culture in the period in which they were written, but may no longer be considered appropriate.

These articles do not necessarily reflect the views of The Australian National University.

Older articles are being reviewed with a view to bringing them into line with contemporary values but the original text will remain available for historical context.

Ralph Entwistle (c. 1805–1830)

This article was published:

Ralph Entwistle (c.1805-1830) brickmaker, convict and bushranger 

Birth: c.1805, Bolton, Lancashire, England. Death: 2 October 1830 at Bathurst, New South Wales. 

  • Brickmaker by trade; convicted at Lancaster Assizes on 10 March 1827 for stealing clothes and sentenced to transportation for life.
  • Sailed on the John I, departed London 22 July 1827 arrived in Sydney on 25 November.
  • Assigned to Bathurst landholder John Liscombe, working harmoniously as a bullock driver. Became convict rebel following a trivial misdemeanour involving Governor Ralph Darling in 1829 which earned him fifty lashes.
  • Led ‘insurgency’ of convicts in Bathurst area, raiding properties, eliciting support from other convicts. Noted for wearing a hat of white ribbons and, with strongly Irish cohort of supporters, gang styled ‘Ribbon Gang’, apparently after ‘Ribbon Men’, Irish secret society.
  • Successfully eluded capture in September-October 1830 showing verve, courage and bushcraft, particularly in the Abercrombie Ranges. Captured in 14 October 1830, summarily tried and publicly executed with nine others at Bathurst, 2 November 1830.
  • ‘Ribbon Gang Lane’ in Bathurst commemorates site.

B. Cubitt, Bushrangers at Abercrombie Caves, (pamphlet) Abercrombie Caves, 1998; Ken Fry, Beyond the Barrier (Crawford House Press, Bathurst, 1993); W. Steel, ‘Dunn’s Plains, Rockley’, Journal of the Royal Australian Historical Society, XXVI, III, 1940; G. Stewart, ‘Convict Rebel: Ralph Entwistle’ in Fry (ed) Rebels and Radicals (Sydney, 1983); Stephan Williams, Ralph Entwistle & the Bathurst Insurgency, (Popinjay, Canberra, 1994).

Citation details

'Entwistle, Ralph (c. 1805–1830)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 22 May 2024.

© Copyright People Australia, 2012

Life Summary [details]


c. 1805
Bolton, Lancashire, England


2 October, 1830 (aged ~ 25)
Bathurst, New South Wales, Australia

Cause of Death


Cultural Heritage

Includes subject's nationality; their parents' nationality; the countries in which they spent a significant part of their childhood, and their self-identity.

Passenger Ship
Key Organisations
Key Places
Social Issues
Convict Record

Crime: theft
Sentence: life
Court: Lancashire
Trial Date: 10 March 1827