Welcome to Country
It is important that those who are on the traditional lands of Australia’s First Peoples are right-minded and cleansed. Learn about the significance of Country and the difference between a Welcome to Country and an Acknowledgment of Country.
My voice for my country
Explore the history of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander voter participation.
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have been observing the skies for millennia. It is where ancestral beings exist and observe. It is both a map and guide to navigation, seasons and cultural practice.
Eddie Koiki Mabo
Eddie Koiki Mabo led a landmark legal case that succeeded in overturning the fiction of terra nullius – ‘land belonging to no one’. What motivated Mabo to take on a ten-year legal challenge?
A map of diversity
The AIATSIS map is a visual reminder of the richness and diversity of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australia.
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have occupied the lands and waters of Australia for millennia. Since the beginning of colonisation, Australia’s First peoples have defended their lands and waters and asserted their rights to their homelands. Learn about a few of the historical moments of the land rights movement in Australia.
Australia's First Peoples
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples are the first peoples of Australia with many different and distinct groups, each with their own culture, language, beliefs and practices. It is because of this diversity that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples identify in lots of different ways.
Missions, stations and reserves
In the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, many First Australians were forced from their Country and on to missions, reserves or stations. Broadly speaking, there were three types of spaces set aside by different governments specifically for Aboriginal people to live on: missions, stations and reserves.
Henry 'Seaman' Dan
Henry Gibson Dan or Seaman Dan as he was affectionately known, was the ripe age of seventy when he released his first album with music producer, Karl Neuenfeldt. Undoubtedly Australia’s oldest ‘gigging’ musician and recording artist, Seaman Dan continued to delight audiences well into his eighties.
Laurie Baymarrwaŋa or Big Boss as she was affectionally known, was born on the island of Murruŋga, largest of the outer Crocodile Islands 500km east of Darwin in North-East Arnhem Land around 1917. A senior Yolŋu leader she was instrumental in preserving the endangered Yan-nhaŋu language and all its intimate ancestral knowledge, linked to her seas and island homelands, for future generations.
The 1965 Freedom Ride
In 1965, a group of students from the University of Sydney drew national and international attention to the appalling living conditions of Aboriginal people and the racism that was rife in New South Wales country towns. Known as the Freedom Ride, this 15-day bus journey through regional New South Wales would become a defining moment in Australian activism.
From the Collection
A.M. Fernando Notebooks
In the late 1920s, a lone Australian Aboriginal man stood outside Australia House in London protesting the treatment of Aboriginal people in Australia. His notebooks offer a glimpse into his life in London and reflect his views on the treatment of Aboriginal people in Australia.