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South Australia - Organisation

Nepabunna Mission (1931 - 1977)

  • Huts at Nepabunna Mission

    Huts at Nepabunna Mission, c. 1937, by Mountford, Charles P., courtesy of State Library of South Australia.
    Details

From
1931
To
1977
Categories
Government-run, Home, Mission, Mission Dormitory and Non-denominational

The Nepabunna Mission was established by the United Aborigines' Mission (UAM) in north-east South Australia in 1931. The Missionaries assisted with housing, schooling, health and other facilities at the Mission. A dormitory for Aboriginal children was constructed at Nepabunna early in the 1940s but was not used for several years. The State Government took control of the Mission from the UAM in 1973 and in 1977 Nepabunna was handed back to the local Indigenous people.

Details

The Nepabunna Mission was established by the United Aborigines' Mission (UAM) on 20 square miles of donated land on the Balcoona Station in 1931 in the north east of South Australia. In the late 1920s the UAM had begun searching for a permanent Home for the Aboriginal people of the area, collectively known as the Adnyamathanha. They had been displaced by colonisation in the 1850s.

The Missionaries assisted with housing, schooling, health and other facilities at the Mission. A school building was established in the 1930s which was also used for church services.

Protector's reports show that a dormitory for Aboriginal children was constructed at Nepabunna early in the 1940s. However, due to the lack of a matron to oversee its use the dormitory had still not come into operation in 1948. At some time after 1948 a dormitory was used for children whose parents were working away from the Mission. An education Department school was built in 1963.

The Government took control of the Mission from the UAM in 1973 and four years later in 1977 Nepabunna was handed back to the Adnyamathanha people.

Location

1931 - 1977
Location - Nepabunna Mission was situtated along the Gammon Ranges Road, at Nepabunna, South Australia. Location: Nepabunna

Publications

Books

  • Hampton, Ken and Christobel Mattingley, Survival in our own land: 'Aboriginal' experiences in 'South Australia' since 1836, Wakefield Press, Adelaide, 1988. Details

Resources

Online Resources

Photos

Huts at Nepabunna Mission
Title
Huts at Nepabunna Mission
Type
Image
Date
c. 1937
Creator
Mountford, Charles P.
Source
State Library of South Australia

Details

Sources used to compile this entry: 'Nepabunna - South Australia, past and present, for the future', in SA Memory, 2009, http://www.samemory.sa.gov.au/site/page.cfm?u=1303; Hampton, Ken and Christobel Mattingley, Survival in our own land: 'Aboriginal' experiences in 'South Australia' since 1836, Wakefield Press, Adelaide, 1988; Spencer, Tracey, The Story of Rebecca Forbes: she came to marry an Aboriginal man, Lateline - TV Program Transcript, Australian Broadcasting Corporation, 22 September 2003. Also available at https://web.archive.org/web/20160731094028/http://www.abc.net.au/lateline/content/2003/hc37.htm.

Prepared by: Gary George