A very different mission : the Myora Aboriginal Mission on Stradbroke Island, 1892-1940

Walker, Faith (1996). A very different mission : the Myora Aboriginal Mission on Stradbroke Island, 1892-1940 Honours Thesis, School of History, Philosophy, Religion & Classics, The University of Queensland.

Attached Files (Some files may be inaccessible until you login with your UQ eSpace credentials)
Name Description MIMEType Size Downloads
FAITH_WALKER_HONOURS.pdf Full text application/pdf 3.02MB 8
Author Walker, Faith
Thesis Title A very different mission : the Myora Aboriginal Mission on Stradbroke Island, 1892-1940
School, Centre or Institute School of History, Philosophy, Religion & Classics
Institution The University of Queensland
Publication date 1996
Thesis type Honours Thesis
Supervisor Rod Fisher
Total pages 155
Language eng
Subjects L
430101 History - Australian
Formatted abstract

Myora began as the history of a mission. However, it soon became the history of a remarkable community of Aborigines of the Noonuccal tribe on Stradbroke Island who lived on a twenty hectare reserve at Moongalba about two miles from Dunwich. They were able to withstand the pressures of European contact from the 1820's onwards. Instead of submitting, they negotiated with the early invaders thereby retaining their identity and independence. The community at Myora survived a period between 1892 and 1896 under a strict missionary regime culminating in the murder of a young inmate. Members of the Myora community proved capable witnesses during the trial in the Supreme Court in Brisbane resulting in their release from a four year ordeal. The difference between the Myora Mission and those institutions where Aborigines were removed from their tribal land and incarcerated under fearful conditions, became apparent even to the Protectors of Aborigines. These men perceived Myora to be different. They repeatedly referred to the settlement as a "community" or a "village". The Myora Mission, after 1896, consisted of a school and a resident teacher, as well as a group of about a dozen small houses. The houses were usually built and maintained by the residents who lived in close proximity to their extended families of Grandpas, Grannies and Aunties. There were times of crisis, such as the decision to close the school in 1929. However, as the school building was the hub of community activities the Elders fought and overcame the threat. Most of the ' residents had been in employment of one sort or another since white contact, the Dunwich Benevolent Asylum being the main employer, Unfortunately they, like other Queensland Aborigines, had part of their wages withheld, which led the Myora residents to confront both the Protectors and their employers during the 1930's. Unlike controlled institutions, Myora had reasonably satisfactory food rations and an abundant supply of every variety of seafood. They never went hungry. Today the Mission has gone, but many past residents remain on Stradbroke Island as leaders of the present-day Minjerribah-Moorgumpin Elders. This really was a mission with a difference.

Keyword Myora
Aboriginal community
Stradbroke Island

Document type: Thesis
Collection: UQ Theses (non-RHD) - UQ staff and students only
Citation counts: Google Scholar Search Google Scholar
Created: Fri, 11 Apr 2014, 16:01:21 EST by Mr Chinh Nguyen on behalf of Scholarly Communication and Digitisation Service