Erased Places? Revealing the Mission network of the Swan River Colony, 1829-1879.
This paper reviews the institutions established for First Nations (Nyungar) children and young adults (16 missions and other residential institutions) operating in the first 50 years of the Swan River Colony, Western Australia (1829 – 1879), and their potential as sites of archaeological investigation. Focusing upon two institutions operating within this network, at Perth, run by the colonial government and Wesleyan Methodists between 1833 and 1844, it asks to what extent these missions operated as part of a network of surveillance and control of Nyungar lives. Evidence for the archaeology and the history of these places is examined and specifically their varying spatial characteristics, that were exploited by administrators in attempts to colonise and control Nyungar inmates. The role of such missions in the landscape of frontier colonialism and the colonial society and economy is explored.