White Sails

White Sails

Dreaming stories of people coming to the region from islands when sea levels were lower are part of local indigenous history. Mitch Dunnett, an Aboriginal leader from Ceduna, tells of one Wirangu story which refers to a ship with white sails which seemed to have been anchored near cliffs in the Sceale Bay area. It is believed that this story dates from a time well before Flinders and Baudin charted these waters, and may possibly refer to a Dutch or Portuguese ship.

Middens at Aerie, burial sites at Searcy Bay, and oral history of Aboriginal Elders are evidence of prior occupation.

Oral history exists of people forced over cliffs at Elliston and the memorial to shepherd James Baird and his death at the hands of indigenous people is located on the Point Labatt Road. The forced relocation and dispossession of indigenous tribes in the region to settlements away from their traditional lands caused a great degree of hardship to Aboriginal people, and resulted in a significant loss of cultural artefacts and traditional knowledge. Despite these unfortunate events, Aboriginal links to the area remain strong.

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