Sydney Road Blaks: Aboriginal and Island History comes to life

Sydney Road Blaks
Within ten miles of Melbourne (Photo: Kim Kruger/Courtesy of the artist)

In 1847, a group of Pacific islanders were spotted on the road heading towards the city of Port Phillip (modern-day Melbourne). The ten men were hauling two drays laden with wool bales from the colony of New South Wales, ending up in Sydney Road, Brunswick.

The movement of these Pacific workers was reported to the Assistant Protector of Aborigines in an October 1847 letter, expressing concern that “a party of blacks were on their way to Melbourne on the line of the new Sydney Road. Early this morning I was out and to my astonishment found . . .

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