“Happiness is not something ready-made. It comes from your own actions.”


Western Australia 1904 Aboriginal Concentration Camp

Western Australia 1904
Aboriginal Concentration Camp

The photo of prisoners is from a book coming out in November this year. http://uwap.uwa.edu.au/products/every-mothers-son-is-guilty-policing-the-kimberley-frontier-of-western-australia-1882-1905

The photo, in front of Wyndham gaol, ironically, is designed to show that the treatment of Aboriginal prisoners in Western Australia was humane and orderly. It was issued following Dr Walter Roth’s ‘Royal Commission into the Treatment of the Natives.’ Roth said the criminal justice system operating in the Kimberley was a ‘brutal and outrageous state of affairs.’ Men were arrested by police on horseback, usually without warrants or evidence on various East Kimberley pastoral stations that had been established on the Aboriginal country mostly in the 1880s.

Most (including at times children as young as ten ) were charged with the โ€˜unlawful possession of beefโ€™ for allegedly spearing the introduced cattle and received sentences of up to three years gaol often including a flogging. On police patrols over several weeks or months up to 40 people at a time were caught and then neck chained together and forced to walk up to 300 km to gaol where, despite there being no regulation allowing it, the neck chains stayed on. Following senior police directives Aboriginal women were never arrested but were bought in with the same group. Not to act as witnesses for the defence but as witnesses for the prosecution. Again without any legal authority they too were neck or ankle chained. Prior to 1905 prisoners from Wyndham had their neck chains fastened with โ€˜iron split linksโ€™ that were extremely difficult to remove. The links were not police issue but purchased privately from an ironmonger in Perth. They could only be opened with โ€˜a hammer and a chisel with the prisoners head on a blacksmiths anvilโ€™, a process that would take up to ten minutes. Most prisoners did not know what they were arrested for, why they were in gaol, or why they were being punished. Roth directed (among a litany of other issues) the government of the day to stop using neck chains although they were used in Western Australia until at least 1956.

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REMEMBER you set yourself a goal

REMEMBER the commitment you made to yourself

REMEMBER what that goal really means to you

REMEMBER during your journey to give the same level of commitment along the way as you did day 1

REMEMBER if you get a flat tyre it’s just a set back don’t slash the other 3

REMEMBER when it gets dark and you feel like quitting, that stars need the dark to shine

REMEMBER winners never quit and quitters never win

REMEMBER you won’t get the results from the commitment you never kept

REMEMBER when it seems too far away, to focus on how far you have gotten

REMEMBER when you feel like giving up why you held on so long

REMEMBER the secret to success is never to give up and if your commitment was real you will always find a way


I remember a wise woman told me once how to keep a husband

* never place a chain around his neck *
My husband is perfectly suited to me cause he knows exactly why I never demand or judge him
My husband will always come home to me
Or maybe yes or no he will come to me
Those wise words stay with me dear husband
Cause it really does not matter what you do I will love you always
And if you do stay away, I will not be angered by you
I will love you and be happy when you MOVE ON cause I had the best of you
I know you will always think what could have been with us
Now just one thing, you will never take from me
The memories of us that are locked in my heart forevermore