From Protectorate to Protection, 1836–1911

Book chapter


Foster, Robert A. and Nettelbeck, Amanda. (2017). From Protectorate to Protection, 1836–1911. In In Peggy Brock and Tom Gara (Ed.). Colonialism and its Aftermath: A history of Aboriginal South Australia pp. 27-40 Wakefield Press.
AuthorsFoster, Robert A. and Nettelbeck, Amanda
EditorsPeggy Brock and Tom Gara
Abstract

[Extract] South Australia was the only Australian colony to address the question of Aboriginal welfare and protection at its very foundation. While these were not issues that especially troubled the colony's entrepreneurial founders, they were issues of growing concern to the British Colonial Office. Evangelicals in the British Parliament, fresh from their victories against slavery, were concerned about the welfare of Indigenous peoples in their colonies and in 1835 instituted an inquiry into their 'state and condition'. Even as the inquiry was taking evidence, the Colonisation Commissioners for South Australia, charged with overseeing the establishment of the colony were in constant negotiation with the Colonial Office, and the fate of Indigenous people was a central concern. The Under-Secretary, Sir George Grey, pointed out to the commissioners that the territory they were laying claim to might 'embrace in its range numerous Tribes of People whose proprietary Title to the Soil, we have not the slightest ground for disputing'. The Colonial Office recommended that the founding Act be amended to include recognition of prior Aboriginal occupancy. While those amendments were not made to the Act prior to settlement, they were incorporated into the colony's Letters Patent and Order-in-Council, the legal instruments authorising the colony's establishment.

Page range27-40
Year2017
Book titleColonialism and its Aftermath: A history of Aboriginal South Australia
PublisherWakefield Press
Place of publicationAustralia
ISBN9781743054994
Publisher's version
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