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  1. The Aborigines Protection Board Act is passed, giving the Board ‘legal’ control over Aboriginal people on stations and reserves but not missions, in the Northern Territory.


  1. The South Australian Aborigines Act makes the Chief Protector the legal guardian of every Aboriginal and ‘half-caste’ child under 21 years old. The Chief Protector also has control of where the child lives. The Chief Protector is replaced by the Aborigines Protection Board in 1939 and guardianship power is repealed in 1962.

  2. Federal government passes the Northern Territory Aboriginals Ordinance. The Chief Protector is made the legal guardian of every Aboriginal and ‘half-caste’ child under 18 years old. Any Aboriginal person can be forced onto a mission or settlement and children can be removed by force.

  3. The Aborigines Protection Board establishes the Cootamundra Girls' Home (also known as Cootamundra Domestic Training Home for Aboriginal Girls) in a former hospital. It is maintained by the Aborigines Welfare Board until 1968 and closed in 1974.


  1. Maternity allowance is introduced but does not include Aboriginal people.

  2. Recognition

    Roper River Aboriginal man Aya-I-Ga, known as Neighbour, is awarded the prestigious Albert Medal by King George V after he saved Constable W F Johns from drowning. It is the first time that a gallantry medal is awarded to an Aboriginal Australian.

    How Aya-I-Ga saved the Constable

    "The constable led his horse into the stream, and they set out. Mr Johns swam with his left hand, his right hand resting on the saddle of his horse.

    Neighbour, with a chain around his neck that had been allowed to hang loose while the crossing was made, swam on the opposite side with his left hand on the saddle.

    In mid-stream the animal sank, and in going down kicked the constable in the head, knocking him semi-unconscious. The prisoner did not hesitate. He went to his captor's assistance, and soon got him to safety."

    It was an extraordinary act of courage considering how heavy Neighbour's chain was, but nevertheless they continued their journey to the police station where Constable Johns said there was no evidence to charge Neighbour, and allowed him to go. The story made headlines nationwide, and came to the attention of the British Parliament, which awarded him the medal.


  1. Beginning of WWI. Approximately 400 to 500 Aboriginal children continue to be removed from their families during the period 1914 to 1918, including children whose fathers are overseas at war.

  2. Aboriginal people serve in the war despite the Defence Act 1909 which prohibits any person not of ‘substantially European’ origin from serving. Aboriginal soldiers are among Australian troops at Gallipoli.


  1. The London Missionary Society hands over its mission in the Torres Strait to the Anglican Church. Elements of Torres Strait custom are incorporated into the ceremonies.

  2. The NSW Aborigines Protection Board is given powers to remove Aboriginal children without a court hearing. This power is repealed in 1940, when the Board is renamed the Aborigines Welfare Board.

    Four generations of my family went without parently (sic) love, without mother or father. I myself found it very hard to show any love to my children because I wasn't given that, so was my mother and grandmother.

    — Carol, personal story in the Bringing Them Home Report


  1. The Northern Territory Aboriginal Ordinance Act "ensured that Aboriginal people could not drink or possess or supply alcohol or methylated spirits, could not come within two chains of licensed premises, have firearms, marry non-Aboriginal people without permission or have sex across the colour line". The Ordinance also forbids mining on Aboriginal Reserve Land.


  1. Aboriginal pastoral wages are 66% of the wages for white workers.


  1. Aboriginal players such as Paul Tranquille and Paddy Crough play first grade rugby league in the 1920s.

  2. Groote Eylandt, in the Gulf of Carpentaria, is named an Aboriginal Reserve. A number of missions have been established there.

  3. Aboriginal population is estimated to be at its lowest at 60,000 - 70,000. It is widely believed to be a ‘dying race’. Most Australians have no contact with Aboriginal people due to segregation and social conventions.


  1. Regulations in the Northern Territory exclude Aboriginal people from voting. Officials have the power to decide who is Aboriginal.

  2. Massacres

    Sturt Massacre in the Kimberley: A police party is searching for an Aboriginal man named Banjo, who was thought to have murdered pastoralists Joseph Condren and Tim O’Sullivan. They shoot at a group of Aboriginal people near Sturt Creek, and when the ammunition runs out, they chain up Aboriginal men, women and children and march them to the old Denison Downs homestead where they shoot and burn them.


  1. The Aborigines Protection Board builds the Kinchela Aboriginal Boys' Training Home, near Kempsey, to train in farm labouring older Aboriginal boys who had been removed from their families. Later it becomes a home for school-aged boys who had also been removed. There were between 30 and 50 boys at the home at any given time. It closed in 1970.

  2. The second banknotes series of Australia (known as the Harrison Series, issued 1923-1925), shows a reproduction of E Phillips Fox’s painting of 1902, the Landing of Captain Cook at Botany Bay, 1770, on the £1 banknote. The painting shows Cook seemingly restrain his men from firing their muskets at people of Gweagal clan, who wield spears in opposition of the landing. It is the first reference to First Nations peoples on an Australian banknote.


  1. Glen Crouch is the first Aboriginal footballer to tour overseas, playing 11 games for Queensland in a New Zealand tour.


View article sources (4)

[1] 'Medal handed back to brave man's family', Koori Mail 501 p.9
[2] dreamtime.net.au/indigenous/timeline3.cfm
[3] 'Aboriginal massacre sites uncovered in first forensic science study', ABC News 1/10/2017
[4] 'First Nations Peoples and Australian Banknotes - Colony', Reserve Bank of Australia Museum, available at museum.rba.gov.au/exhibitions/first-nations-peoples-and-australian-banknotes/colony/

Cite this page

Korff, J 2024, Timeline results for , <https://stage.creativespirits.info/aboriginalculture/timeline/searchResults?page=8>, retrieved 25 July 2024

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