Dhimurru rangers have been involved in some very interesting work this week at the Garanhan (Macassan) stone pictures site. Archaeologist Prof. Campbell Macknight and colleague Bill Gray, who were involved in the original mapping of the now National Heritage listed site, returned to re-record and assess the 45 stone pictures.
The arrangements were done towards the end of the nineteenth century by Yolngu wanting to record the history of traders from Macassar that came every year from about 1780, to harvest dharripa (trepang), a sea slug, which they processed on site (with Yolngu assistance), then sold on to the Chinese. The pictures depict boating and processing equipment used and are an important part of Yolngu history. Our rangers did an awesome job surveying the site and interpreting the stories for the visiting Learning on Country students. This work demonstrates why ‘Country Needs People’ http://www.countryneedspeople.org.au/