Narional Archives of Australia
Patrol Report, R Macaulay, December 1959
The Commissioner of Native Welfare
Department of Native Welfare
GPO Box R1268
October - November Patrol of Central Reserves and Giles
1. I left Woomera 9th October and returned 24th November, 1959,
covering a distance of 5700 miles during this period. The patrol
route was from Woomera to Mt Eba, Coober Pedy, Granite Downs, Everard
Park, Kenmore Park, Ernabella Mission, Mulga Park, Mt Davies, Wingellina,
Giles, Warburton Mission, Blackstones, Giles, Giles Creek, Kutjinderry
(Gill's Pinnacle), Kaltukatjarra (Docker Creek), Tundi (Hull River),
Putta Putta (Shaw River), Giles, Ernabella Mission, Kulgera, Alice Springs,
(Bungalow, Amoonguna and Warrabri Native Settlements in NT Welfare
vehicle), Curtin Springs, Ayers Rock, Mt Olga, Ernabella Mission, Giles,
Alice Springs, Granite Downs, Oodnadatta, Coober Pedy, Mt Eba, and
Movement of Rawlinson Natives
2. The Rawlinson group has returned from Ernabella Mission.
Young Willie, Birmunka, Youngi Youngi, their children, and Ininka,
Narula, Wanatjura (three big girls) and Louie, are at Curtin Springs
waiting for rain before proceeding to the Rawlinsons. Japobe and
Toporalana and their families are in transit to the Rawlinsons.
3. All the natives near Giles have moved out in an easterly
direction towards Bungobiri, Putta Putta, and Wankari, where, they
say, they will hunt dingoes until my return to Giles in mid-January,
4. On direction from the Flying Doctor, Alice Springs, I admin-
istered three injections of penicillin to Kam:i, a native girl aged
about 6 years. Kam:i, daughter of Nowina and Malgina, had been treated
for a burn on the thigh by Mr T Taylor, Assistant District Officer,
Kalgoolie. The wound was in an appalling condition when seen by me.
Kam:i was flown to Hospital in Alice Springs on the weekly aircraft to
Giles on 28th October. It is expected that she will return by aircraft
early January, 1960.
5. Warbri, son of Tjali and Nininka, was treated for a severe mouth
infection which cleared up on treatment with gentian violet solution.
6. No sign was seen of Wanupay, wife of Japobe. I looked for her
in the Petermanns and at Ayers Rock and Mt Olga. It appears that she
was in the area north west of Mt Daisy Bates. Wanupay is actively
tubercular and should be sent to Alice Springs Hospital with the minimum
7. The 1956 Issue Medical Chest, on issue to Native Patrol Officers
for the treatment of natives, was in poor order. When last checked by
me late in 1958, it was complete and contained such additional items as
cough syrup and eye ointment. However, many articles are now missing
including a pair of scissors. Both tins of tulle gras, for the treatment
of burns, had been opened and a small quantity used from each tin, although
it is clearly indicated that one tin must be kept in tact and sterile for
emergency use. Steps have been taken to re-stock the chest and it is now
located in the office of the Officer i/c Giles, with a request taped to
the lid that a more responsible attitude be taken towards the use of the
chest in future.
8. Kulate, the one legged Rawlinson man and his children were left
at the Bungalow Native Settlement, Alice Springs, at the request of the
District Welfare Officer, Mr W McCoy. Later I was able to deliver his
wife to the Bungalow. The whole family will be removed to Areyonga on
a supply truck. (The family is
Kulate or Gulidinna
Miarinna, his wife
Toparalana, his son a young man
Pijiti, his son about 15 years
Tjupandari, his daughter aged about 11 years
Tjiyuduna, his son aged about 7 years
Ninu(na), his son aged about 5 years).
Native Cult Movements
9. Natives at Warburton and Ernabella Missions sought my advice on
several cult movements which are now affecting them. Three inter-related
movements are discernible - Kurunara, Wonbu Kutara, Wombu Ayiri - and they
originated in the Marble Bar, Port Hedland, Broome area. Their spread
is via Jiggalong Mission, Willuna, Mulga Queen, Leonora, Laverton, Warburton
to Rawlinsons, Warburton to Ernabella, Oodnadatta and Alice Springs.
10. Kurunara is not new by any means but phases two and three are,
and they incorporate material which, purposefully or otherwise, is anti-
white in character. From the WRE viewpoint, it is important to know if
the movements come from the McLeod's Group, or if they are a 'natural' phase
in the culture-contact sequence. I have heard that the cult movements
have had a tremendous influence on natives in constant contact with whites.
They have not had much appeal to the Rawlinson natives who do not think
as yet that they are so badly off.
11. The immediate embarrassment to natives at Warburton and Ernabella
is connected with one sentiment of the movements indicating that natives
should move towards the north-west coast, there to receive the good things
of the white man and be looked after in a 'proper manner'. So Far.
Warburton and Ernabella natives have not shown any inclination to leave the
12. Recently, however, messenger-musterers have brought word that native
women in the 'north-west' have been shown the sacred life, including the
initiation of young men. The call has gone out for natives of Western
Central Australia to form a huge 'womala' (soldier group), and move across
to the north-west to extract revenge. This has definite appeal to the
natives and they acknowledge the responsibility. There is also a ready
parallel when some fifty years ago, a group in the Mt Davies, Mt Gosse,
Mt Samuel area was rounded up and burned at Jalkada for similar infringements of
the sacred life.
13. In answer to the questions of the Warburton and Ernabella Natives,
I advised them that I was extremely loathe to interfere with their business
but that my advice was that
(a) there could easily be a connection between the cult
movements and the alleged showing to women of the sacred
life. This could be a trick to get them across to the
(b) The area referred to is a great distance away and there is
no guarantee that the culprits will be there when the avengers
arrive. Moreover, there are plenty of natives much closer
to the area in question. Also it is likely that Police
would turn back any large scale movement of natives.
14. This advice fitted in with the attitude of the middle aged group
of natives who were endeavouring to block the cult movement and prevent any
movement of natives from the Missions.
15. The police constable from Laverton recently confiscated three
.22 rifles at Warburton Mission on the alleged grounds that it is illegal
for natives to have firearms on a Reserve. While the constable may have
been endeavouring to exert authority - I heard that he was ordered not to
make any arrests connected with sheep spearing at Warburton - and while I
do not know if the Missioners lodged any complaints, I do feel that un-
necessary hardship was imposed. Certainly, the loss of these weapons which are
so intimately linked with the economic life caused a considerable amount
of resentment among the natives.
16. The South Australian Police attitude appears better adapted.
Ernabella Missioners have been requested by the Police to register every
rifle held by the natives. I have not heard reliably of any case where a native
has used a firearm dangerously or provocatively against whites, although I
know of several instances over the last three years when whites have fired
near natives in a provocative manner. It is noted that Ernabella wisely
invoked Police action against a native who used a knife in a fight instead
of a spear.
17. Billy, a Rawlinson native, obtained a rifle at Ernabella recently,
and there are several in the Wingellina area. Bullets are obtained from
whites at Ernabella in exchange for dingo scalps.
18. It is suggested that the Western Australian Police Department
gives further consideration to the matter of the use of firearms by natives
on Reserve No. 17614.
19. There are about six whites at Wingellina under the control of Mr
J Johnson. There were about twenty natives at Wingellina when I left and
more are expected to move across from Warburton when the Mission closes
after Christmas. Mr Johnson, who handles natives well, enlisted my aid
in encouraging them to spend more time away from Wingellina. Some were
using the Bore and WRE punp at Mt Davies when I left the area.
Blackstones and Mt Davies
20. The buildings at Blackstones and Mt Davies do not appear to have
been visited by natives for some time. It is noted that Mr H A Laine
has complained to the Western Australian Police about stealing by natives
at Blackstones although when he left Blackstones he indicated clearly that
he was abandoning the camp.
21. The Mission has not changed much over the last three years although
it appears slightly better administered by Mr K Siggs than by Mr H Green.
Several new bores have been put down. The natives were still complaining
bitterly about the poor employment position. On a daily average, six men
and six women are employed at the Mission.
Visit to Northern Territory Settlements
22. While in Alice Springs I took advantage of an offer by the District
Education Officer (Welfare Department) and the District Welfare Officer to
accompany the District Education Officer in his vehicle to the Bungalow Native
Settlement near Alice Springs, its unoccupied successor, Amoonguna, and
Warrabri Native Settlement. These visits proved very valuable in assessing
Northern Territory Welfare policy and machinery.
23. Warrabri, built at a reputed cost of 180,000 pounds is the show piece of
the Northern Territory Native Settlements. It became operative in 1957 and
has first class accomodation for the thirty whites living there. The white
staff consists of a superintendent, manager, assistant manager, farm manager,
two carpenters, driver-mechanic, cook supervisor, three nursing sisters, one
teacher for white children, a pre-school teacher and four teachers for native
children. There are about 300-400 natives at Warrabri, many of them housed
in small one-room aluminium houses with separate ablution facilities. It is
noted that Warrabri was not providing work for all the natives on the Settlement
although I was unable to obtain any figures as to what percentage is unemployed.
Inland Mineral Expedition
24. During October, a Sydney group, financed by Sydney business man,
set up camp near Lake Christopher at the western end of the Rawlinsons to
prospect for Lasseter's gold. The group was expensively but ill-equipped,
inexperienced, and very much the victim of the heat and flies. After con-
stant bickering among the personnel of the party, Mr D Blacklock, Managing
Director of Slazengers, flew to Giles and returned the party to Sydney after
only three weeks of the scheduled six months in the field.
25. The party consisted of Herbert Deloraine, Donald Fleming, Thomas
Wilkinson, Paul Bolton, Robert Macaulay, and Charles Foley. Their Reserve
permits were in order.
26. Mr Blacklock presented 7 cartons of weet-bix, 2 cartons of baked
beans, 1 carton of diced carrots, 5 x 150lb bags of plain flour, and 2 x 50lb
bags of S.R. flour to me for the natives in the area. These articles are
held in the Native Patrol Officer's store at Giles and will be used from time
to time to 'pay' natives for filming and tape recording rights. Mr Blacklock
asked for two small woomeras and I shall despatch two miniature spear sets
to him and recoup the cost from the Rawlinson natives.
27. Personnel of the Inland Mineral Expedition, apparently under the
influence of Mr M Sawtell of Sydney, asked seemingly casual questions about
the variance in State policies towards the Reserves and the attitudes of the
State Governments towards Missions. There is no doubt that the future of the
Central Reserves will come more and more into the limelight.
28. The Inland Mineral Expedition stated that Mr R Ansett has a plan
to send tourist buses between Alice Springs and Kalgoolie via Giles and
Laverton once a graded road is pushed through from Giles to Alice Springs via the
29. It is suggested that the Western Australian Police Department
gives further consideration to the matter of the use of firearms by natives
on Reserve No. 17614.
Native Patrol Officer