Narional Archives of Australia
Report on Patrol 19 February 1964
Patrol Report R Macauley 19.02.1964
19th February, 1964
Patrol - January to February, 1964
(1) Examine the general position of the Aborigines in the
Rawlinson Range, especially near Giles Weather Station.
(2) Collect information at Warburton Range Mission for the
forthcoming monograph on the Central Reserves.
The patrol route was to Coober Pedy, Everard Park, Ernabella
Mission, Musgrave Park, Rawlinson Range, Mural Crescent, Warburton
Mission, Rawlinson Range, Mural Crescent, Musgrave Park, Ernabella,
Victory Downs, Coober Pedy and Woomera. The patrol covered the period
24. 1.1964 to 5. 2.1964 and three days were spent at Warburton Mission.
There are 4 men, 4 young men, 6 women, 5 young women, and
approximately 6 children scattered in small family groups throughout
the Rawlinsons, Mural Crescent, Walter James Range, and the Central
Petermanns. In addition I transported Mickey's widow (Tawila) and
her two children (Miawla and Patani); and old woman (Naparala), and a
young family (Henry - Tjimalka, his wife Kungala, and baby Elizabeth)
to Warburton Mission for various purposes. With Mr Harman's approval
I transported Tjardi (Georgie) (Walatina), and his two sons Minyindidi
and Yanunana to Musgrave Park because Yanunana appeared to me to be
suffering from malnutrition. Musgrave Park was chosen rather than
Warburton Mission because Tjardi's wife Naraban is in hopsital in Alice
Springs receiving further treatment on her jaw, and Musgrave Park is
on her flight route home.
Mickey, a middle aged adult, died near Giles on 13th January,
1964, from what appeared to be a chest infection, probably broncho-
pneumonia. Mr MacDougall reported the death at the time. Mickey is
buried 10 miles west of Giles on the north side of the Warburton road.
Three other deaths of the same nature occurred at Mt Davies about the
same time and there are reports of an influenza-type epidemic in several
parts of the Centre.
Apparently most of the Rawlinson natives had colds but they
had cleared up by the time I reached Giles. There were no obvious
urgent health needs in the groups I say.
Food and Water
There are at least two native owned rifles among the
scattered groups and they are providing the means to a regular supply
of kangaroo meat. Lizards are being caught in great numbers and the
quandongs have had a good season. There are also good supplies of
onion grass along the creeks. It could be stated that present food
supplies in the area are reasonable. There were only two dingo scalps to
180 points of rain have been recorded at Giles since mid-
December and the rock-holes in the ranges are full and the soaks in
the creeks have a ready supply near the surface, allowing small groups to
move away from the ranges into the plains in search of food. I doubt
if water supplies will cause any concern until next summer.
Stealing st Giles
On the night of 16th January, 1964, three local native youths
Brian, Graham and Young Harry, broke into the store at Giles and
stole a total of 59 tins of food, none of which was recovered. On
the night of 24th January, 1964, three young women pushed a hole in
the fly wire netting of the store and stole 34 tins of food of which
13 tins were recovered. On 29th January, Brian and Graham entered the
garage at Giles at 2.00am looking for files, knives, etc but fled
when detected. About the same time most of a packet of .22 bullets and
a Biro pen were stolen from the weather office at Giles. Earlier, on
11th January, 1964, a canvas utility canopy and a new tarpaulin were
recovered from the native camp. The date on which they were stolen
was unknown at Giles.
I spoke sternly to the three youths concerned, but did not
see the three girls who fled on my approach and stayed bush. The
youths in question were removed to parental care some miles from Giles.
When near Giles they were in camp with distant relatives who obviously
did not discourage the stealing. Mr Morgan, camp Manager, Giles will
take greater precautions to keep buildings locked and sealed, but short
of this there is little that can be done by Mr MacDougall or me or the
Staff at Giles. The normal method of dealing with petty stealing on
missions, etc, is to make the whole camp suffer by closing the store
etc until the camp forces the offenders to comply. There are so few
scalps to trade in camp that this was not a worthwhile lever against
stealing. What is required is a good swift kick in the pants by a
Could Mr Harman please be asked to refer this matter to
his local Police Authorities so that a Policeman can accompany the next
welfare patrol into the area. All stealing can become serious if unchecked
but the young people involved are not belligerent and are now, I trust,
under parental care. Thus I do not see any urgency in this matter and
possibly a policeman could accompany the early April patrol as far as Giles.
I confiscated a rifle belonging to Brian on the grounds that
it was dangerous to him. Parts of the cocking device were missing and
the bolt action was extremely sloppy. The rifle is now at Musgrave Park
where there are doubts that it cam be repaired. I hope that the loss of
his prestige-giving rifle will serve to quieten Brian and make him work
longer hunting with spears, thereby cutting into his leisure hours which
seem to be devoted to stealing.
I spent three days at Warburton Mission, mainly in discussion
with Mr Keith Morgan, Acting Superintendent, and Mr R Hawthorn,
who provided some material for the forthcoming Central Reserves Monograph.
I wish to thank Mr Harman for notifying the Mission of my intended visit
and for so paving the way for the discussions.
The patrol International utility ZSU 071 gave a trouble
free patrol, and there were no punctures.
Native Patrol officer