Lest We Forget


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Artist: Lee Hampton

Nation/s: Wodi Wodi – Worimi – Yuin

Story: As Australians we are all reminded of the great sacrifices our forefathers have made in times of war, to protect our way of life. Many ANZAC’s have made the ultimate sacrifice to maintain the civil liberties we all enjoy today.

But there is a darker side to our history that isn’t spoken about, nor the sacrifices glorified like our white countrymen, and that is of the hundreds of thousands of Aboriginal Men, Women and Children that have died in the name of protecting Their Land against foreign invaders in both post and pre European Invasion. It is estimated that before European settlements on Aboriginal Land, our people numbered more than 1 Million, within 100 years, that number had fallen to around 60,000.

Many died during initial battles with European occupiers of their land, while thousands died from introduced dis- eases. Those that had survived were forced from their lands by farmers, and ended up in battles with neighbouring tribes.

In more recent times, Aboriginal men and women have fought alongside their white countrymen, against foreign enemies, even when their own country, did not recognise them as equals. Many thought that by fighting alongside the white man, they would receive better living conditions when they got home, but once they return from service, they were once again treated like second class citizens.

It wasn’t until the 1960’s that our people were beginning to see changes made that allowed them the same privileges as their white countrymen.

There is still a divide today, although I do believe progress is being made in order to restore some of the loss felt by all Aboriginal people. For those who have paid the ultimate price with their lives, and for those who continue to lose their lives in the pursuit of truth and to help regain our identity, we shall remember you…Let We Forget.


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