Daily Archives: July 5, 2017

Colonial Frontier Massacres in Eastern Australia 1788-1872

The University of Newcastle has a fantastic new site showing colonial massacres on the frontier in Eastern Australia. You can access it at

https://c21ch.newcastle.edu.au/colonialmassacres/

The map shows the approximate location of massacres of both indigenous people and settlers in the eastern states. As the creators explain in the introduction, their criteria for a massacre is six people.  Why six? To lose six people (or 20%) from a  ‘hearth’ group of twenty people renders that group vulnerable to further attack and diminishes their ability to hunt for food, reproduce and carry out their ceremonial obligations. The data is drawn from a range of sources including newspapers, parliamentary reports, the memoirs and correspondence of settlers, missionaries and Protectors, and oral and visual Aboriginal accounts.  The reliability of the source is rated with a star system.

The site makes quite clear that it is a work in progress, and subject to change through ongoing research.  Fascinating, and sobering.

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