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Several Australian South Sea Islander men loading cane stalks onto wagon in the field
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Australian South Sea Islanders

Australian South Sea Islanders have a compelling heritage etched in the landscapes of Queensland. State Library has a vast array of collections and resources to explore, providing an insight into their history and contribution.


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Refined White Exhibition 2001 photographic materials

Children ride the merry-go-round on Recognition Day at Emmaus College, Rockhampton, 2000.
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25 years of Australian South Sea Islander National Recognition

Tai Bobongie, 2018-2019.
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Historic photographs

(Two men posed in a studio) Untitled
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Australian South Sea Islander resource guide

A comprehensive list of State Library of Queensland resources related to Australian South Sea Islanders.

PDF · 246 KB

Exhibitions and symposia

South Sea Islanders arriving by ship in Bundaberg, Queensland Negative number: 18058
Australian South Sea Islanders
An online showcase commemorating 150 years since Australian South Sea Islanders arrived in Queensland.
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Group of South Sea Islander workers on a property in Cairns
Plantation Voices: Contemporary conversations with Australian South Sea Islanders
The 2019 exhibition Plantation Voices explored Australian South Sea Islander culture and history in Queensland.
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Percy and Roy Mooney outside their house in Habana near Mackay, Queensland Image number: 28873-0001-0008
A Time for Telling
Australian South Sea Islanders discuss their history and contemporary identity in this compelling conversation.
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From the blog

The John Oxley blog is a primary tool for sharing knowledge about Queensland's history and knowledge of the past. The Australian South Sea Islander experience unfolded with the establishment of Queensland's sugar industry in the late 1800s.   

South Sea Islanders arriving by ship in Bundaberg, Queensland in 1895
Uncovering the story of Australian South Sea Islanders
62,000 South Sea Islanders were recruited for the labour trade in Queensland between 1863 -1903.
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Portrait of James Murray of Bundaberg in uniform
Australian South Sea Islanders in WW1
Australian South Sea Islanders enlisted with pride. James Murray of Bundaberg served in the 9th Btn.
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South Sea Islander labourers gathered around a drum outside a hut in Innisfail, ca.1902
Australian South Sea Islanders National Recognition Day
Each year, 25th August is Australian South Sea Islanders National Recognition Day.
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You may also like

South Sea Islander women planting sugar cane by hand at Bingera, Queensland, c.1897.
Australian South Sea Islanders: Flickr
Explore more historic photographs in our Australian South Sea Islander albums on Flickr.
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Plantation Voices exhibition, Philip Bacon Heritage Gallery, State Library of Queensland.
Plantation Voices resources
An online portal to a wide variety of resources linked to Australian South Sea Islander history.
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Two young South Sea Islander children near Innisfail, Queensland, c.1903.
Australian South Sea Islander education resources
Discover resources developed by education professionals on State Library's Curriculum Connect.
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