Aboriginal people on the Victorian Goldfields(1850-1860s)

The attraction of gold mining in Victoria for Aboriginal people

According to the above article, the Aboriginal people were involved in discovering and prospecting for gold during the gold rush The gold miners made use of the Aboriginal bushcraft, knowledge and food on the goldfields In 1852, Lord Robert Cecil made a visit to the Kyneton diggings where he recalled how the miners in Specimen Gully showed him the “blackfellows’ sugar” in Aboriginal language The appeal of gold provided the opportunity of joining the ranks of the nouveau riche. Many European station hands could not resist these ranks The gold rushes provided the Aboriginal people with opportunities of gaining employment on pastoral runs and also were also able to learn skills in their station work Many of the station hands deserted the Challicum station and joined the Clunes rush of 1851 The Aboriginal people helped in lambing. The Aboriginal people were employed by Colin Campbell his Buangor station after the price of European labour increased during the gold rush in 1852. Other opportunities ceased by the Aboriginal people during the gold rush included the selling of excess produce from their farms by the Djadjawurrung farmers at Mount Franklin (David Fred Cahir, 2008).

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An Exploration of Aboriginal and Chinese People’s Associations on the Victorian Goldfields

According to historical records, the activities of the Chinese during the goal rush are was less than desirable and hence led to certain level of disapproval among the locals. They were far from an Aboriginal cosmological perspective; they were neither considered as ngamadjidj who were the resuscitated clan people as the whites were considered by Aborigines; nor were they the mainmait who were the foreign and undesirable Aboriginal people. The authors also noted that during the pre-gold period, labour shortages were relieved by the importation of indentured workers from Asia and they were most times called “coolies” by the squatters. The coolie labour was almost introduced in 1846 when thirty squatters formed the Malay Immigration Society. Alexander Johnston of Carranball people and they could hardly speak any English. In 1852, about 3,000 Chinese men had entered Australia under the collie labour system. Based on the notion derived from the authors of the above named book, it is important to note that that it was not only the European that were attracted to the goldfield, the Chinese from east were also part of the gold rush, (Cahir,& Clark, 2015).

Aboriginal Victorians A History Since 1800

The aboriginal Victorians history since 1800 was written about the aboriginal people, based on a comprehensive study of the article is important to mention that the piece of writing focused on certain aspect the as regarding the aboriginal people. The introductory chapter of this book pointed out the concept of the gold rush. According to the author of it remained one of the reasons behind the immigration of educated individual into Australian. The immigrants were said to have frame a form of colonial consciousness of the residence of the Victoria Falls with led to the enhancement of protective laws by the colonial government. Based on the resource available at the time the colonial government created specific aboriginal administration, although these group of people was caught in the middle of these adverse situation of force land possession by immigrants, it important to note that it was during the period of the goal rush that that aboriginal people became profound based on activities such trails, travail, and profound effort to regain independent from colonial rule and to reclaim possession of their lands. (Richard Broome. 2005).

Aborigines and the Gold Rush

According to the above article, the goal extraction caused certain forms of disruption in the life of the aboriginal people residing the Victoria fall, the natural environment at the time which was characterized by flocks of cattle and sheep were now replacing humans, tools and implements. The miners invaded the land. They carried out many activities with disrupted the normalcy as regarding the life of the aborigines. Trees were cut and used for firewood’s, tunnels, houses and other construction needs and most often than not the water supply was contaminated by miners’ activities. It is important to mention that the authors of the article also emphasises the fact that the invaders of the aboriginal land changed the lifestyle of the people. According to the author of the article it is important to note that irrespective of the fact that the land was adversely impacted and natural resources were continuously excavated, the land also witnessed a form of modernization. The locals were not totally victims of the events that took place in the Victorian goal rush; however, according to the author, most often the benefit that accrued to the locals are usually overlooked whenever the story is retold. (“Aborigines & the gold rush | Ergo”, 2018)

Black Gold: Aboriginal People on the Goldfields of Victoria, 1850-1870

The above-mentioned book gave it an account of the events that transpired during the era of the gold rush. It began by pointing the Discoverers and fossickers, according to the authors of the book; the first discovery of gold in Australia was reattributed to Edward Hargreaves. However, there is a need to note also that are reports suggesting that others preceded him. The author stated also the discovery and presence of gold in the communities lead to specific reactions which included immigration and cultural interruptions and alterations amongst other, based on the nature of the role played by the Chinese during this era, the book also dedicate specific aspect to explain their involvement in the gold rush. It pointed out particular effects of the arrival of the Chinese on the aboriginal people. An aspect of the book which was titled unfriendly relation was dedicated to discussing specific instances when there was conflict on the goldfield and such times outputs and production were dramatically affected. It is necessary to mention also the concluding aspect of the book discussed an interesting concept which was referred to as the sexual unions. The author clearly indicates that there were occasions when non-indigenous members of the community selected aboriginal life partners in the nineteenth century, (Cahir, 2013).


Works Cited

David Fred Cahir. (2008). The attraction of gold mining in Victoria for Aboriginal people. Journal of Australasian Mining History.

Aborigines & the gold rush | Ergo. (2018). Ergo.slv.vic.gov.au. Retrieved 17 March 2018, from


Richard Broome. (2005). Aboriginal Victorians: A History since 1800.

Cahir, F. (2013). Black gold: Aboriginal people on the goldfields of Victoria, 1850-1870. ANU Press.

Fred Cahir, Ian Clark. (2015, October). “John and Jackey”: An exploration of Aboriginal and “Chinese People’s Associations on the Victorians Goldfields”. Journal of Australasian Mining History, 13.