Gus Williams
Hermannsburg, N.T. 0872
17 St Andrews Place
Melbourne, 3002
(03) 96511510
19th August 1997

1933 Hermannsburg Photographs


I spoke with you on the phone on Tuesday about some photographs from a trip my father, John Pockley, made to Hermannsburg in 1933 when he was only 20. He died in 1991.

Sorry about the quality - the originals are worse because most of them are tiny little contact prints. The best way to see these images is by using a computer. They are on the internet along with some others from around Alice Springs and Haasts Bluff. The images are part of a site called `The Flight of Ducks' which tells the story of my father's journey through your country.

It can be found at .

As I explained on the phone, my father went out to Mount Liebig with an artist called Arthur Murch and a collector called Stanley Larnach. T.E. Strehlow and Petering went with them as far as Gosses Bluff. Their guide was a man from Hermannsburg called Hezekiel.

I am aware that the use of historical photographs showing Aboriginal people can be sensitive and that sometimes these images can cause offence. I would like to avoid that if possible.

Using the internet is quite a different way of telling stories from film or video because anyone can talk back and correct the stories, put in new images or even tell another story from their own point of view. I'm sure there are lots of stories about those days at Hermannsburg. It would be wonderful if your community could tell some of them in `The Flight of Ducks'.

What I am sending you is a print-out section of my father's journal at Hermannsburg (page numbers didn't come out well). I have also included, for your inspection, all the other photographs I could find taken in or around Hermannsburg.

There are a number of important issues arising from the use of the internet and Community people that I would like to discuss with you. I will ring you again next week and we can talk if you are available.


Simon Pockley