Day of Mourning

Topics: Australia, Indigenous Australians, New South Wales Pages: 2 (585 words) Published: March 2, 2009
1.Describe the main features and/ or developments of the day of mourning.

As many Australians know Australia day is celebrated on the 26th of January. Australia day celebrates the British flag at the head of Sydney cove by Governor Arthur Philip in 1788, This day was also known as the day of mourning by the 21st century.

During the year 1938 , Aboriginal people in Sydney were becoming more prepared in their political activities. Bill Ferguson organised the first meeting of the “Aborigines Progressive Association” in 1937 in preparation for an event to mark the 150 years of European settlement. William Cooper (leader of Victoria's Australian Aboriginal League) and Margaret Tucker planned "A Day of Mourning and Protest" and a meeting for January 26, 1938. This event occurred in the Australian Hall at 150 Elizabeth Street after they were declined for the use of Sydney Town Hall. This meeting was the first meeting held to discuss the mistreatment against aboriginal people. Before this meeting many leaflets were handed out informing people that only “Aborigines and persons of Aboriginal blood only are invited to attend”

Jack Patten reads the resolution at the Day of Mourning Conference on 26 January 1938: "We, representing the Aborigines of Australia…on the 150th Anniversary of the whitemen’s seizure of our country, hereby make protest against the callous treatment of our people…and we appeal to the Australian nation of today…for full citizen status and equality within the community." Man, March 1938. Mitchell Library, State Library of New South Wales

After many years of protest The "Day of Mourning" made an impact, and changed aboriginal peoples life’s the government made new laws for the education and care of aboriginal people, which now made them equal with the “white community” After this, Aboriginal organisations in Sydney disagreed with the participation in the Government's re-enactment of events for January 1788. The Government brought groups...
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