Murray Island, Queensland
Murray Island, also called Mer within the native Meriam language, is a small island of volcanic origin, probably the most easterly inhabited island of the Torres Strait Islands archipelago, just north of the good Stone Barrier Reef. The island is populated stone island grey polo by the Melanesian Meriam people, which has a population of around 485 as of 2006 census. The Murray Group contains three islands: Mer, Dauar and Waier.
There are eight Meriam clans: Komet, Zagareb, Meuram, Magaram, Geuram, Peibre, Meriam-Samsep, Piadram, and Dauer Meriam. The organisation of the island is predicated on the standard legal guidelines of boundary and ownership. Administrative management of the island relaxation with the Torres Strait Regional Authority.
2 History 2.1 Pre-European settlement
2.2 Submit European settlement (1872) 2.2.1 Culture
Murray Island, situated within the jap section of Torres Strait, is a basaltic island formed from an extinct volcano, which was last energetic over 1,000,000 years ago. It formed consequently when the Indo-Australian Plate slid over the East Australia hotspot. The island rises to a plateau 80 metres (260 ft) above imply sea level.
The highest level of the island is the 230-metre (750 ft) Gelam Paser, the western end of the volcano crater. The island has pink fertile soil and is covered in dense vegetation. The island has a tropical local weather with a wet and dry season.
Murray Island has been inhabited for around 2800 years, the first settlers being Papuo-Austronesians who brought agriculture and pot making with them. Regular contact between the inhabitants of Torres Strait (including Murray Island, recognized by the Meriam people as Mer Island), Europeans, Asians and different outsiders started as soon as the Torres Strait turned a technique of passage between the Indian Ocean and the Pacific Ocean within the nineteenth Century.
The inhabitants of the Torres Strait, including the Meriam individuals, gained a popularity as fierce warriors and skilled mariners. Warfare (each intertribal and in opposition to European ships in transit by the Coral Sea) and head looking were part of the tradition of all Torres Strait islanders. The account of Jack Ireland, a surviving cabin boy from the barque Charles Eaton that was wrecked in 1834 at Detached Reef near the entrance to Torres Strait is of interest in this respect. He spent much of his time on Murray Island before being rescued.
A large ceremonial mask was recovered in 1836 from a neighbouring island – Aureed (Skull) Island, following his rescue and that of younger William D’Oyley, the only different survivor of the Charles Eaton, and their return to Sydney. The mask was made from turtle shells surrounded by quite a few skulls, seventeen of which had been determined as having belonged to the crew and passengers of the Charles Eaton who have been massacred once they came ashore following the shipwreck. The mask was entered into the gathering of the Australian Museum after the skulls have been buried on 17 November 1836 in a mass grave in the Sydney cemetery in Devonshire Avenue. An acceptable monument – within the type of an enormous altar stone – recording the catastrophe by which they perished was erected. When the Devonshire Avenue Cemetery was resumed for the site of the Central Railway Station in 1904 the skulls and the monument have been eliminated to Bunnerong Cemetery at Botany Bay Sydney.
Put up European settlement (1872)
Missionaries (primarily Polynesian) and some other Polynesians began to settle on the island in 1872 when the London Missionary Society founded a missionary college there. The Queensland Government annexed the islands in 1879. Tom Roberts, the properly-identified Australian painter, visited the island in 1892.[Three] He witnessed a night-time dance and depicted it in a painting.
In 1936, a maritime strike fuelled by Islander dissatisfaction with the fact that their wages and boats were managed by the Protector of Aborigines allowed islanders to assert management and reject government controls. In 1937, the stone island grey polo inaugural meeting of Island Councillors on Yorke Island resulted in the Torres Strait Islander Act (1939), giving Islanders more authority in their very own affairs and established native governments on each island.
After the outbreak of the Pacific Struggle in 1941, over 700 Islanders volunteered to defend the Torres Strait. This group was organised into the Torres Strait Light Infantry Battalion. The migration of Islanders to mainland Australia increased as jobs disappeared in the pearling industry. A call for independence from Australia in the 1980s was as a result of the government failing to provide basic infrastructure on the island.
Murray Island’s most famous resident was trade unionist Eddie Mabo, whose decision to sue the Queensland Government to secure possession of his land, which had been removed from his ancestors by the British colonial powers utilizing the terra nullius legal concept, finally led to the High Court of Australia, on appeal from the Supreme Court docket of the State of Queensland, problem the “Mabo determination” to finally recognise Mabo’s rights on his land on 3 June 1992. This decision continues to have ramifications for Australia. Mabo himself died a number of months before the decision. After vandalism to his grave site, he was reburied on Murray Island the place the islanders carried out a conventional ceremony for the burial of a king.
The folks of Mer maintain their traditional tradition. Modern influences akin to consumer items, tv, journey and radio are having an impact on conventional practices and culture. Despite this, song and dance stays an integral a part of island life and is demonstrated by means of celebrations such as Mabo Day, Coming of the sunshine, Tombstone openings and different cultural events. In 2007, after two years of negotiations, the skulls of 5 Islander tribesmen had been returned to Australia from a Glasgow museum the place they had been archived for more than a hundred years.
The artist Ricardo Idagi was born on Murray Island. Idagi received the main prize on the Western Australian Indigenous Art Awards in 2009.
The people of Murray Island speak Torres Strait Creole and Meriam, a member of the Eastern Trans-Fly languages of Trans-New Guinea; its sister languages being Bini, Wipi and Gizrra. Though it is unrelated to Kalaw Lagaw Ya of the Central and Western Islands of Torres Strait, the two languages share around forty% of their vocabulary. Torres Strait English is a second language.
Murray Island is governed by the Community Council, which is answerable for roads, water, housing and community events. The Group Council is an integral a part of group life. The elders of the community hold a place of respect and now have a serious affect on island life.
Listing of Torres Strait Islands
List of volcanoes in Australia
Murray Island Airport
^ McInnes, Allan (1983). The Wreck Of The Charles Eaton. Windsor: Diamond Press. p. 45.
^ “Torres Strait Island communities I-M”. State Library of Queensland. Eleven Might 2011. Retrieved 4 July 2011.
^ Bousen, Mark (6 March 2010). “118-12 months-old Murray Island art found”. Torres News. Retrieved four July 2011.
^ “Queenslander”. News Restricted. Thirteen June 2009. Retrieved 4 July 2011.
^ “Mer Islanders reclaim sacred skulls”. Torres News. Three July 2007. Retrieved four July 2011.
^ Rothwell, Nicolas (1 October 2009). “Carved out of ancestral whispers”. The Australian. Information Limited. Retrieved 4 July 2011.