Adding to the thread I started. Ned Kelly is famous enough probably from his home made armour and two films; however I had never heard of Ben Hall until I heard Martyn Wyndham Read's excellent LP.
I suppose 'more famous in song than history books' is very subjective: where you live, who taught you history at school, did you maintain an interest in history etc. I was surprised to discover later in life that so many characters and events I had first heard about in songs as a child and teenager really did exist. Says a lot about history teaching I'm afriad: Romans, Vikings, Tudors and WWII is about all some kids get.
Charley Chicken, I too like RR songs. Do you know anything about the Wabash Cannonball? Thanks