Howitt and Fison Papers

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4or became extinct in the Kurnai tribe the local groups, Hordes if descent remains in the female or clans if it has been [?] of and [crossed out - became attached] the male line, the exogamous law has attached itself to the local that is geographical groups which therefore regulate marriage. It is as if an English Village had determined that its children should marry beyond its bounds, possibly with the children of some one in some adjacent village while its daughters went to the village whence thier brothers took their wives.

The illustration of these statements I shall take several instances mainly those of [crossed - the case of] the Dieri and the Kurnai [crossed out - as instances] for the reason [crossed out - already stated] that they are respectively highly typical of the most archais and the most recent forms of local & social organization of the Australian tribes known to me.

The local organization [underlined]

The Dieri tribe inhabits the country of the Barcoo delta in the west and to the west side of Lake Eyre in Central Australia. It is one of a number of tribes which have the same organization, with allied languages and [crossed out - the same] ceremonies, customs and beliefs are the same lines. These tribes to some extent althoroughly submitting, if I may be permitted to so phrase it, to the English imperium, still have their own lives and follow so far as is possible the tribal customs. That which I shall have [?] of them will however be as I knew them thrity seven years ago in their wild state before their country had been occupied for pastoral purposes. The tribal territory was occupied by five principal local divisions (1) [Poordo Pirmauie?] or Lake Hope [crossed out - the ?] Lake (2) Kūramina or Blanchewater (3) Kopperamana(4) [Kilalepanina?] and [Kathithaudra?] at the junction of the Baroo Rd with Lake Eyre.

Last edit about 1 month ago by ALourie
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The country of the Dieri tribe ends about Blanchewater [crossed out - where] where the Flinders Range of mountains and [crossed out - in the Freeling heights] [?] abruptly in the Freeling Heights. In these mountains were a series of tribes commencing with the [Murdilari?] or "Red people" in mountain areas, following the Kūyani --------- the country of the the latter ending [crossed out - west ? from Port Augusta] at Mt Eyre all these tribes were of the same great [st? ?ulients?]. had spread over the Lake eyre Basin having apparently migrated from [crossed out - the] N Eastern Australia following the course of the Barcoo natives and [?] those of the [?mantion?] also. At any rate I have traced the same organization and and class system on the Upper Barcoo at Mt Howitt in the [Rūnan dalrui?] tribe and the great ceremonies of the Dieri connected with the "mura mura" beliefs extend up to Birdsville and thus connect the tribes of the Everard/Everard River & Diamantina/Diamantina River with these as far south as the Dieri and [Murdula?] at the least.

The class system with the names Materi and Kararu not only extended from the Dieri to the most [crossed out - to Spencer Gul the surrounding ? extent of the tribes] [crossed out - But they also were in the [?] [Riveolin?] tribe.]tribes situated between [Piri?] and the Head of the Bight all of which had the classes Materi and Kararu in some dialectic form as for instance Mŭteri and kararu of the Witūrū and Hileri tribes at the head of the Bight. These class names cease for this [crossed out - any rate they did not extend beyond the boundaries] of the Mēning tribe settles about Eucla which [crossed out - must be ?] [crossed out - to be] is [?] of the West Australian State.

The class name Materi and Kararu as I have said extended down the western side of Spencers Gulf.

On the Eastern side: Yorke Peninsula separates Spencers Gulf from the Gulf of St Vincent. Here I may now [?] a long series of coast tribes which are remarkable as having in many [crossed out - ways] respects an organization which departs [crossed out - in] more or less strongly from the types which are found within the Australian continent.

The first of such tribes is that which occupied [?] and whose remnant state [?] therein.

[Left margin note]The [Augala?] tribe was [?] the Kūyani of Port Ausgusta. Thence in the extensive tract of whose bounds are approximately fixed by Pot Lincoln Head of the Australian Bight, Lake Gauwner & and the Gawler were two tribes whose common boundaries the coast at [Point Brom?]. The one east of the point Wilūrū and [the?] the west of the point the Hillerie tribe.

Last edit 12 days ago by ALourie

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great one" who could not come to see me. I went, and found sitting in one of the huts, the oldest blackfellow I ever saw. The other Pirarus were mostly grey haired and bald but he was so old as to be almost childish and was covered with a [?] feel/fell of hair from head to foot. The respect with which he was treated by the other old men was as marked in them as was the respect with which they were treated by the younger men.

They told me that he was unable to walk about and that when they travelled he was carried by some of the younger men.

Such Headmen as those of the Dieri were certainly to be found in all the tribes of the Lake Eyre Basin, the Barcoo, and extending

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[In circle] Insert under at A

In the [Adjadura?] tribe the office of Headman was hereditary from father to son. The Head man [insert: a man of probably 60 years of age] who was still living in [Crossed out ' In the Kurnai tribe'] 1887, and therefore dated back to the [settlement?] of South Australia inherited his his authority from his father, and his son [?] the time [?] already some authority in the tribe. [Rest of line crossed out] [word crossed out] Other men of near the same age were all unanimous in confirming their [?] and to the Headmanship.

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tribes such as the Dieri, but in this respect their power was perhaps no more marked and their office distinctly hereditary.

Each totem class (1) that is each localised totem had its Headman called [Rupulli?]. The office was not hereditary but the [Rupulli?] was chosen by the old men, yet here as in other such tribes there seems to have been a tendency to choose the brother or the son of the dead Headman as the successor.

[Left hand margin note to explain "Each totem class"](1) I use the term totem class advisedly?] in this case because with the naming [eri?] the totems have become [localised?] as was the case with many of the [western?] tribes.(see p. -)

Last edit 4 months ago by ALourie
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[Page a revised version of preceeding page 6]

great one" who could not come to see me. I went, and found sitting in one of the huts, the oldest blackfellow I ever saw. The other Pirarus were mostly grey haired and bald but he was so old as to be almost childish and was covered with a [?] feel/fell of hair from head to foot. The respect with which he was treated by the other old men was as marked in them as was the respect with which they were treated by the younger men.

Such Headmen as those of the Dieri were certainly to be found in all the tribes of the Lake Eyre Basin, the Barcoo, and extending down the Flinders Ranges to Spencer Gulf and [?],

[2 lines crossed out - ' I have now also in the two class tribe opf the Darling River and the River Murray']A [arrow to insert here]

Alluding to to the account given to me by the Rev. Geo. Taplin and [?] [?] [?]find and extended by his son the [?] Mr Taplin, the Head men of the [Narruyeri?] coast tribe were analagous in characteristics to those of the inland tribes such as the Dieri, but in this respect their power was [such?] [so?] more marked and their office distinctly hereditary.

Each totem class (1) that is each localised totem and its headman called Rupulli. The office was not hereditary but the Rupulli was chosen by the old men, yet here as in other such tribes there seems to have been a tendency to choose the brother or the son of the dead headman as the successor.

[Note left hand margin is the same as the previous page]

Last edit 4 months ago by ALourie

XM145_ICDMS_lowres R Christison to Howitt

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Lammamoor Oct 31stAckd 28/11[?]/85 [?]Alfred Howitt, EsqSale Gippsland Victoria

Dear SirI feel quite ashamed to write to you tis so long ago since I got your last letters. I have been most busy: closing a long partnership, selling some runs, and buying others, that I have had but little time for anything else. Dr Beddoe has gone, I regret to say he would not help me to give you the information you required. I have gone over all your queries today and I fear I cannot answer your questions accurately, of course I have an idea of many of your questions, but I refrain from attempting to answer them as I have my doubts as to their accuracy. However, what is in my power, and you can rely upon its accuracy, lies in the dot tracing I have made on your map, showing the boundary lines of the various tribes in this district, and the names of them.

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The only one I am doubtful of is No. 9 I think it lies more to the eastward towards the Alice and Barcoo. I feel I could answer more of your queries if I met you personally and had some of my most intelligent blacks with us, is there no probability of you coming north? Would you like a water color head of two Daleburra male and female? I shall make another attempt and try if I can give you some more information, especially upon the theme [?] of relationship. The drought is ? very bad, if no rain falls before Feb I fear ruin will fall upon many. Griffith’s Land Billis most damaging to Lessees, and must injure the future advance of Queensland much. I hope to go to Tenterfield N.S. Wales in December to escape the hot months here during the rainy season, if we are ever to have another.

Yours faithfullyR. Christison

Last edit 25 days ago by ALourie
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