State of South Australia
The Royal Commission on the Aborigines was appointed on 19 December 1912 to inquire into and provide a report on 'the control, organisation and management of the institutions in this [South Australia] set aside for the benefit of the aborigines'. It was also asked to report 'generally upon the whole question of the South Australian aborigines'.The Commission's Progress report, handed down in October 1913, included 26 recommendations, one of which suggested that the Point Pearce and Point McLeay Missions be taken over by the Government and controlled by the Aborigines department. A Final report was produced in October 1916.
The Commission comprised three members of Parliament and two members of the Legislative Council. During 1913, the Commission visited Aboriginal missions at Point McLeay, Point Pearce and Moonta, taking evidence from mission staff, board members, Aboriginal residents and pastoralists.
The Final Report covered evidence taken during 1914 at Killapaninna and Koonibba Missions which the Commission also recommended be taken over by the government. Also the Commission recommended that the State take control of all Aboriginal children at age 10 and place them 'where they deem best'.
Sources used to compile this entry: Progress Report of the Royal Commission on the Aborigines; together with minutes of proceedings, evidence and appendices [Document], Date: 1913; Raynes, Cameron, A Little Flour and a Few Blankets: An Administrative History of Aboriginal Affairs in South Australia, State Records of South Australia, Adelaide, 2002, 162 pp; Swain, Shurlee, History of Australian inquiries reviewing institutions providing care for children, Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, Sydney, October 2014, http://www.childabuseroyalcommission.gov.au/documents/published-research/historical-perspectives-report-3-history-of-inquir.pdf.
Prepared by: Karen George and Gary George
Created: 21 February 2011, Last modified: 14 August 2015