James Alpin McPherson Bushranger

James Alpin McPherson (1842–23 August 1895) otherwise known as The Wild Scotchman, was a Scottish-Australian bushranger active in the area around Gin Gin, Queensland in the 19th century. He was born in Inverness-shire, Scotland, the eldest of the eight children of John McPherson, farmer, and his wife Elspeth, née Bruce. The family migrated in the William Miles and arrived at Moreton Bay on 19 January 1855. The father worked as a farm labourer for D. C. McConnell of Cressbrook. Alpin went to a Brisbane school where his diligence pleased the teachers; he learnt some French and German, and became a fluent and entertaining speaker. Apprenticed to the builder, John Petrie, he attended the Brisbane Mechanics' School at night and achieved prominence in its debating class. In 1863 McPherson ran away and worked on various stations, becoming an excellent horseman and an accurate shot. His first recorded law-breaking activity was early in 1865 near Bowen, where at gunpoint he held up a publican who owed him back wages. The government offered a £50 reward for his apprehension. He went to New South Wales and is alleged to have stuck up several parties on the Northern Road.

Personal details

Date of birth
Date of death
August 23rd, 1895 at age of 53
Place of death


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