Saturday, January 21, 2012

Urunga Aborigines - can you identify?

In response to my post Elections, Aborigines & the need for change, MC wrote:

Hello Jim
Im wonderingIf you know who this family is in the photo? And if you have many other photo's with names as I was born in Belligen and lived in Urunga and found out that we are Aborigines. But our Great grand father married Our grandmother she was from England so it was not to be talked about in our family.Which is great loss.
MC

The photo follows. Do you know who the people in the photo are?

[Aborigines Home the Island Urunga[4].jpg]Postscript:

Christine made this extremely helpful comment that I thought should be brought up in the main post:

Hello there... I have recently completed some research into the relationship between missionaries, Aboriginal people and the government in NSW during this period and may be able to provide some clues as to where to look.

I found this link showing that the family appear to be a family who moved to an island in the area to live independently of the Aborigines protection Board in about 1914. Here is the link.
http://nla.gov.au/nla.cs-pa-http%253A%252F%252Flibrary.coffsharbour.nsw.gov.au%252Fcgi-bin%252Fspydus.exe%252FENQ%252FPIC%252FBIBENQ%253FIRN%253D2862563%2526FMT%253DPA

It may be worth a look in the Minute books of the Aborigines Protection Board around that time to see if there was any fuss being made. If there was, then their names would have been listed. It is also worth wondering whether the family DID live on the actual Aboriginal Reserve and was kicked off. In which case it is possible their names would have been listed. In 1914, however, the Board was fairly busy drafting its 1915 Amendment. Certainly it may well be that the family, living off the reserve, was not subject to the various acts. Sadly they may well have come to the notice of the Department of Child welfare... again it is a matter of combing the lists. There is a project underway to reconcile children with families. I can provide a contact name.

Another possible area to look may well be the Unitee Aborigines Magazine The Advocate (copy in Mitchell Library). The UAM was active up that way during this period and would have known and named the family. But then again, sorry, there were one or two families who spurned the faith missionaries because they were Roman Catholic. Your correspondent mentions that there was a marriage with a white woman. Perhaps you could tell me more about this? You could also try the index of births deaths and marriages if names and dates are known... this may also help.

I will have a look through my copies of archival material to see if I can be more specific but these leads may be of assistance.

My email is christine at chrisvickers.com.au

5 comments:

Christine said...

Hello there... I have recently completed some research into the relationship between missionaries, Aboriginal people and the government in NSW during this period and may be able to provide some clues as to where to look.
I found this link showing that the family appear to be a family who moved to an island in the area to live independently of the Aborigines protection Board in about 1914. Here is the link.
http://nla.gov.au/nla.cs-pa-http%253A%252F%252Flibrary.coffsharbour.nsw.gov.au%252Fcgi-bin%252Fspydus.exe%252FENQ%252FPIC%252FBIBENQ%253FIRN%253D2862563%2526FMT%253DPA

It may be worth a look in the Minute books of the Aborigines Protection Board around that time to see if there was any fuss being made. If there was, then their names would have been listed. It is also worth wondering whether the family DID live on the actual Aboriginal Reserve and was kicked off. In which case it is possible their names would have been listed. In 1914, however, the Board was fairly busy drafting its 1915 Amendment. Certainly it may well be that the family, living off the reserve, was not subject to the various acts. Sadly they may well have come to the notice of the Department of Child welfare... again it is a matter of combing the lists. There is a project underway to reconcile children with families. I can provide a contact name.
Another possible area to look may well be the Uniteed Aborigines Magazine The Advocate (copy in Mitchell Library). The UAM was active up that way during this period and would have known and named the family. But then again, sorry, there were one or two families who spurned the faith missionaries because they were Roman Catholic. Your correspondent mentions that there was a marriage with a white woman. Perhaps you could tell me more about this? You could also try the index of births deaths and marriages if names and dates are known... this may also help.
I will have a look through my copies of archival material to see if I can be more specific but these leads may be of assistance.
My email is christine at chrisvickers.com.au

Le Loup said...

Good post.
Keith.
http://woodsrunnersdiary.blogspot.com/

Jim Belshaw said...

Thank you, Christine. I really appreciate this. I will bring your comment up in the main post and cross-post on my New England history blog.

Jim Belshaw said...

Thanks, Keith.

Christine said...

Your'e welcome, Jim.