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Students at the airport on Yermalner/Melville Island in 1985 taking part in the ceremony commemorating the extraordinary story of Tiwi man, Matthias Ulungura. On 19 February 1942, a Japanese fighter plane crashed near Snake Bay on Melville Island. The pilot, Hajime Toyoshima, survived the crash and staggered from the plane, lost and disoriented. Ulungara who was nearby, crept up behind Toyoshima, taking him prisoner. Ulungura was famously reported to have said, “stick 'em up, two hands!” Toyoshima was the first Japanese prisoner-of-war to be captured on Australian soil.

Image: Wiedemann, Bert, 1985, PictureNT, Northern Territory Government Photographer Slide Collection, PH0730/0032

Published: 9 October 2016


Forgotten Territory was a weekly photo column of historic images in the Northern Territory News which I curated from 2016 until 2019 supported by the collections of the Northern Territory Library and other cultural institutions around Australia, as well as local history Facebook groups. 

Click on the images to read the story behind the image.

Warning: May contain images of people who have died.

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