The View From Mount Clarence

A look back at settlement along Western Australia's South Coast

Category: Albany Aborigines

  • A short history of Aboriginal relations along the South Coast through the story of the Albany Aborigine Norngern and his King George Town contemporaries

    Tommy King was Norngern, and Norn was Wandinyilmernong.   This is a modified version of a piece submitted to Vol. 33 of  the academic journal Studies in Western Australian History during 2019. The edition, called ‘Albany: an antipodean Arcadia‘ edited by Malcom Traille and Harry Freemantle, carries a range of works from writers in some…

  • Mokare’s Mob – Summary and Conclusions

    As with every aspect of The View From Mount Clarence‘s look into the inclusive history of Albany and the South Coast, exploring the life and times of Mokare and his fellow Menang Aborigines has been nothing short of compelling. This is because most non-indigenous people, myself included, have little knowledge of -and do not properly…

  • Mokare’s Mob – Part 4b

    Collie after Mokare (Continued from Part 4A)   Cultural impasse aside, it’s important to stay close to our intended purpose of trying to determine the ultimate role played by Mokare in leading the Albany Aborigines into non-violent intercourse with the incoming European presence. The question is not whether Mokare and the succession of incomer leaders…

  • Mokare’s Mob – Part 4a

    Mokare and Dr Alexander Collie (1793-1835)   And so to Dr Collie himself, Albany’s original ailing academic. Doctor, botanist and casual explorer, by the early 1830s Collie had become a reknown natural history collector as well. His naval experience aboard HMS Blossom cruising the coasts of the Americas, including the Pacific Islands and far north,…

  • Mokare’s Mob – Part 3

     Mokare and Captain Collet Barker Our impression of life with the Aborigines at the garrison prior to the arrival of Captain Collet Barker can be compared to Scott Nind’s watercolours. From them we get a sense of place and time, but the landscapes Nind painted are unpeopled and vacant. In contrast, from the opening entry…

  • Mokare’s Mob – Part 2

      Mokare- His character and influence    Above: Louis de-Sainson’s  Albany Aborigines sketched in October 1826, coloured and printed 1833. The images are of Mokare (bottom right); Patyet, thought to be Nakinah (bottom left); and young brother Yallapoli with the brothers’ father, also named Patyet (middle). The two men at the top are unidentified but…

  • Mokare’s Mob – Part 1

    Mokare: 1800 – 1831 Not since the time of Mokare has there been more future driven anxiety facing the South Coast’s Indigenous. As final deliberation on the Single Noongar Claim looms, Western Australia’s South-Western Aborigines face acceptance of the decades long Native Title case against the Government of Australia, an issue as much rooted in the story of Mokare…

  • In Search of Ngurabirding – Part 3

    Moorilup   In our search for Ngurabirding we are building  background to the arrival of his father, Ticket-of-leave man John Maher, in the Albany area during 1854. Maher took up work as a farm labourer or shepherd on one of the Spencer sheep runs closer to Mount Barker, north of the main settlement. Last post…

  • In Search of Ngurabirding – Part 2

    The Hay River Brigade   Before we go on with the story of John Maher after the issuing of his Ticket-of-Leave, it’s important to look into what had already taken place at Albany relative to his arrival. This applies to the earliest period of free settlement and the story of the Spencer family, in particular, who…

  • Campbell Taylor and the Cape Arid Connection – Part 2

    Originally Published 30 April 2015: The 1840s   Above: The Lower Kalgan River meanders past Mount Boyle into Oyster Harbour and King George’s Sound reflecting the rural idyll of old Albany. Campbell Taylor’s childhood home lay on the upper part of the hill. Built in 1837 by his father Patrick, the living room gave commanding views,…