Jay Creek Disciplinary Correspondence 1939 - 1942

Narional Archives of Australia Darwin Office CRS F126 Item 23 Disciplinary Cases Correspondence Jay Creek 1939 - 1942 NB The parts marked ....... have been censored in the originals. Copyright P J Mackett 2007 20. 2.1939 From T G H Strehlow Jay Creek to Chief Protector of Aboriginals Adelaide South Australia Full blood Millie Smith being held at Jay Creek. Aged about 40 years. Comes from Anna Creek south of Oodnadatta South Australia. Came to Alice Springs some years ago as wife of a quadroon named Walter Smith. Walter Smith deserted her. Has brother Jimmy Fenn at Anna Creek. 28. 2.1939 From Acting Chief Protector of Aboriginals to T G H Strehlow Trying to find out if Millie Smith is known in the Anna Creek district. 27. 3.1939 Signed Walter Smith, witnessed Mrs L Price This is to certify that I have given orders to Mrs W Smith to sell all my camels branded near neck Z T S. 11. 4.1939 To Mr Walter Smith at Tennant Creek or the Anningie Tin Field from the Patrol Officer. Wife is Millie at Jay Creek. 28. 4.1939 To T G H Strehlow from Chief Protector of Aboriginals Brother of Millie Smith is Jimmy Fenn at Nilpinna Station. 18. 6.1939 From Arthur L Pope to T G H Strehlow Jay Creek Wants Millie for wife's domestic help. 9. 7.1939 To Mr A L Pope at Hatches Creek Millie Smith unable to leave Hatches Creek. Is Walter Smith at Hatches Creek or has he left. 28. 7.1940 To Mrs Arthur Pope of Hatches Creek Millie Smith will be able to leave Jay Creek at the end of August. 9.12.1941 From Half-caste Institution Alice Springs to T G H Strehlow Jay Creek About Agnes, age about 16 years, lives at Little Flower Mission and employed as a domestic in casual employment. 'on the 28th November I appeared on behalf of an aboriginal named 'Kenny' charged with assault on the above named female aboriginal. The facts appeared to be that 'Kenny', a brother of 'Agnes', wanted her to stop going with soldiers and to go with an aboriginal names 'Long Frank'. This 'Agnes' refused to do and in the ensuing quarrell 'Kenny' struck her a terrific blow on the mouth cutting her lip through and badly damaging the upper. For this offence 'Kenny' received three months imprisionment.' Similar thing happened with an aboriginal names Wallaby. 'I would therefore recommend that 'Agnes' be removed from the township area of Alice Springs to your Jay Creek Reserve for detention. I might add that Father Ether has signified his approval of such action 17. 4.1942 From T G H Strehlow to Director Native Affairs Branch Mataranka Application for Marriage Permit for Mr Michael (Mick) Murphy and full blooded aboriginal girl Agnes. This letter is reproduced in full. Northern Territory Administration Alice Springs 17th April 1942 The Secretary Native Affairs Branch Northern Territory Administration Mataranka, N.T. Application for marriage Permit, Murphy - Agnes An application has reached me from Mr Michael ('Mick') Murphy for a permit to marry a full-blooded aboriginal girl called Agnes. Agnes is a good looking girl, who was educated for a while at the Little Flower Mission, Alice Springs. She got into trouble ......... at Alice Springs on a number of occasions; however it appears that on at least one of these occasions she had been .................. ..... . She was removed from Alice Springs to the Jay Creek Reserve as a penal case on January 5th of the present year. Mr McGarry, of the Little Flower Mission and Father Eather, of Alice Springs, were of the opinion that Agnes would never settle down with a native husband; all attempts to do so had failed. I am inclined to concur with them. Agnes appears to me to be a girl who regards herself as being superior to all native males. She always keeps herself spotlessly clean, wears good clothes, usually walks around in high-heeled shoes, and bears herself like a well-educated town girl. She has given us no trouble on the Jay Creek Reserve. Mick Murphy is a single labourer, at present working on good wages in Alice Springs. He is, like Agnes, a Catholic. He was born in Ireland, but has spent most of his life in Australia. He was a miner at Wauchope Creek a few years ago. Since then he has come to Alice Springs, where he has worked for a contractor C Deacon. At present he is working in the Railway yard, Alice Springs. He is a good worker, and of sober habits, and has good references from his employers. Mick Murphy asked me for permission to marry Agnes about a week after she had been removed to Jay Creek. He has known Agnes for some time, and she apparently has not gone .................... since he met her. He was fully informed about her previous history by Mr McGarry; but this information merely aroused his resentment against Mr McGarry without lessening his liking for the girl. I asked Murphy in January to wait for a reply to his application till May; I wanted to be certain that his love for Agnes was sincere and not merely an infatuation which would vanish after four months separation from the girl. During this interval Murphy interviewed Father Eather about his marriage. At first Father Eather agreed to marry him to Agnes, and informed me to this effect. Later, however, Mr McGarry returned from his holidays; and I was then told that 'Father has decided not to marry Agnes and Murphy in the Church; but he is agreeable to their being married by a Registrar'. McGarry's explanation to me was to the effect that marriage being a sacrament, he did not think it advisable that a church marriage should be agreed to in this case since love between a white man and a black girl did not seem feasible to him. I do not agree with Mr McGarry in this regard. A white man who has lived in the country for some years amongst the natives can, in my experience, conceive real love for a black girl. One instance in point is the case of Mr Pearce, of Lynda Vale Station, who left the proceeds of his whole station property to his black wife after his death. From all accounts Murphy is a single respectable man, who in spite of discouragement from certain quarters has stuck to his intentions to marry Agnes. Agnes is a girl who, in my opinion, will never settle down with a black husband; but she would probably make a good and faithful wife to a white man who cared for her. She has worked in Alice Springs Homes, and has splendid references from her employers for her neatness and her industry. I, therefore, recommend thay Murphy's application for a marriage permit be granted, and forwarded to me so that it can be kept till the date of the ceremony. T G H Strehlow Patrol Officer 4. 6.1942 Letter from the Constable Jay Creek Reserve to the Deputy Director of Native Affairs Alice Springs. This is reproduced in full Jay Creek Aboriginal Reserve Alice Springs 4-6-42 The Deputy Director of Native Affairs Alice Springs Proposed Marriage Murphy - Agnes Sir I refer to correspondence dated 17th April in the shape of a memo from Patrol Officer Strehlow to the Secretary, Native Affairs Branch, and a Marriage Permit authorising the marriage of the two a/n parties, issued by the Deputy Director, (Mr White) dated April 29th. This Permit has been handed to me by Rev S O Gross, who was of the opinion that it ought to be filed in this Office. The position is that this marriage is postponed indefinite- ly. Mr M (Mick) Murphy, interviewed by me in the presence of Rev Gross at Alice Springs, desired such postponement. Mr Murphy stated that he is working on the Railways such long hours, that he has practically no opportunity for home life. Also, (he stated) he has found it impossible to obtain a house or accomodation for carrying on a married establishment. Mr Murphy states that his feeling for Agnes have under- gone no change. He still retains his interest in the girl, and points his profession by supplying Agnes with a consignment of rations, etc, regularly each fortnight. On the other hand, (he states) in the event of Agnes conceiving an affection for, and desiring to marry another during this proposed period of waiting, he will not stand in her way nor object. He asked that Agnes be retained at Jay Creek during the interim, (a course of action which would have been taken in any case, in view of the fact that Agnes is a disciplinary case). I therefore removed Agnes back to Jay Creek on the 3rd of June. The Marriage Permit is filed with correspondence relating to this matter in this Office. Constable Officer in Charge Jay Creek Reserve 22. 5.1942 From T G Strehlow to Dr O Kewish Alice Springs Hospital This is reproduced in full here. The Northern Territory Administration Alice Springs 22nd May 1942 Dr O Kewish Alice Springs Hospital Dear Sir Since the girl Peggy, kept hitherto as a penal case on the Jay Creek Reserve, has now married the boy Tarzan employed by you, and has expressed a desire to live with him at the place of his employment, leave is hereby given to her to do so. In view of the assurance kindly given by yourself to me a few days ago that Peggy would be employed in your household and thus protected from undesirable outside influences, I hereby give leave to Peggy to take with her her halfcaste child, aged about two years, while employed in your household. Should she leave her employment with you, the child would have to be returned to the Jay Reserve or some other Institution. Leave is hereby given to you to employ both Peggy and Tarzan in the Tennant Creek area. Yours sincerely T G H Strehlow Deputy Director of Native Affairs