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Tomorrow marks a century since Darwin's infamous rebellion, which climaxed with angry residents marching through the streets and then burning an effigy of the the Administrator Dr John Gilruth. A range of factors had caused tempers to boil over. The NT had been handed back to the Commonwealth in 1911, leaving Territorians unrepresented at the highest level, plus there were ongoing industrial disputes and, perhaps the clincher, Darwin’s hotels had been nationalised which led to a significant jump in the price of beer. So after stop-work meetings on the morning of 17 December 1918, it was on. About 1,000 men walked to Government House with placards saying demanding "no taxation without representation" carrying an effigy of Gilruth tied to a stake. After weeks of what was essentially imprisonment in Government House, Gilruth left town.

Published: 16 December 2018


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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