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Three Indigenous Australians, c1850

This is a watercolour painted by Samuel Gill in about 1850, entitled 'Two natives and child by a creek'. The painting, which measures 10 cm x 12 cm, is also known as 'Aborigine with barbed spear'. The location is unidentified. The image shows three Indigenous Australians - a man, a woman, and a child aged about three. All ...

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Sheep run and wool dray, c1855

This is an oil painting on canvas, measuring 12.2 cm x 19.0 cm, painted in about 1855. It is made in the form of a Christmas card, inscribed with 'The COMPLIMENTS OF THE SEASON'. The painting has two 'pictures within a picture', like wall hangings, surrounded by the leaves and bright red flowers of Sturt's desert pea. One ...

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Simon, Indigenous Australian from Victoria, c1858

This is a hand-coloured photographic print of an Indigenous Australian from Victoria, taken in about 1858. Measuring 24 cm x 19 cm, it is entitled 'SIMON. An Australian Aborigine of the Yarra Yarra tribe which opposed the landing of Batman 1835'. The man is pictured with a spear in one hand and a wooden club in the other. ...

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'Where the Treaty of Waitangi was signed', 1882

This is a watercolour by Alfred Sharpe that shows the house where the Treaty of Waitangi was signed in 1840, as seen from Motumaire Island in the Bay of Islands (far north of the North Island of New Zealand) in 1882. Steep exposed rocks, with a number of trees growing on them, dominate the foreground. The Treaty House is ...

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Armed Constabulary camp near Parihaka, 1881

This is a black-and-white photograph of a New Zealand Armed Constabulary camp near the settlement of Parihaka, Taranaki (halfway down the west coast of the North Island) in 1881. Several dozen uniformed men are lined up on either side of a track. Some are leaning on a railing that runs alongside the track on each side, ...

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Räwiri Püaha's gun

This is a 'superimposed-load' or 'four-hammer' double-barrelled shotgun. Known as 'Koatariini', it belonged to Räwiri Kïngi Püaha, a chief of the Mäori tribe Ngäti Toa Rangatira. The butt of the shotgun is made from walnut. The barrel and trigger are made from steel and brass, and are attached to the rest of the gun with ...

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Elderly Mäori man, 1870s-80s

This is black-and-white photograph of an unknown elderly Mäori man taken during the 1870s or 1880s. Shown from the waist up, he is wearing a feather cloak (kahu huruhuru) that has three distinct bands: the bottom layer is made up of white feathers, the middle band is of darker feathers and the band nearer the head consists ...

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'Te Whiti's bank, Parihaka', c1887

This is a black-and-white photograph from Parihaka, Taranaki taken around 1887. Traditional Mäori whare or houses surround a bank built in European-style architecture, using painted, sawn timber and with foundations, a cross gable tiled roof with finials, and a covered balcony with a balustrade at the front. A man is leaning ...

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'Crowd in the water, Opononi', 1956

This is a black-and-white photograph showing a woman and a group of children in the water at Opononi, Hokianga Harbour on the west coast of the far north of New Zealand's North Island. The woman appears to be reaching out her arm near the head of a young bottlenose dolphin known locally as Opo. The dorsal fin and part of ...

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‘Wool tables, Horsley Downs - J D Lang’, 1880s

This is a black-and-white photograph taken in the 1880s showing wool tables in the interior of a woolshed at Horsley Downs, a sheep station in Waipara County, North Canterbury (central east coast, South Island of New Zealand). The photograph shows seven men in the foreground sorting and grading sheep’s wool on slatted sorting ...

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'Breach at Gate Pä, April 30, 1864'

This is a watercolour created by Lieutenant Horatio Gordon Robley showing Pukehinahina or Gate Pä at Tauranga, New Zealand, on the morning of 30 April 1864. Two British soldiers are standing guard over the scene. In the background two figures are carrying someone away on a stretcher. A slain Mäori defender lies in the trench ...

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Crested weedfish

This is a preserved specimen of a crested weedfish ('Cristiceps aurantiacus', but labelled 'Auchenopterus aysoni' in this specimen). It was collected by a Mr Stephenson in 1901 in the Bay of Islands, in the north of the North Island of New Zealand. It is head down in alcohol in a glass jar on which two labels are pasted. ...

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Dress with accessories, c1820s-40s

This is a dove-coloured 'going away' dress with shoes and bonnet. The dress was made in the 1820s, then remodelled in about 1840. It is made of silk taffeta and is 132 cm long and 47 cm across at the shoulders. The 'poke' bonnet was made by James Robson Millinery and Lace Depot, England, around 1840, from buckram, a silk ...

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Embroidered picture of a huia, c1900

This is an embroidered picture of a female huia bird ('Heteralocha acutirostris') on a branch taking nectar from the flowers of a rata (a native New Zealand tree). The dark-coloured bird has white-tipped tail feathers, and light orange wattles at the base of its beak. The work has a stylised Mäori design around the edges ...

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Tabua (ceremonial whale tooth), c1800s

This tabua, a kapkap (a forehead or shoulder ornament), is a large, cream-coloured whale tooth, originating from Fiji in the 19th century. It is perforated at the tip and the base for suspension. Its suspension cord is a tight, complex plait of sennit (coconut fibre) with ornamental knots at 2-3 cm intervals. Nine ornamental ...

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'Akau-tä (club), 18th century

This is a long fighting club created in Tonga in the 18th century. It flares from a round grip to a wider, thicker tip and is completely covered with intricate incised designs, including several miniature figures on the shaft and flattened end (figures are not visible in this image). Most of the carving is extremely fine, ...

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'At whare komiti', 1885

This is a black-and-white photograph taken in 1885 by Alfred Burton. It depicts a group of 17 unidentified Mäori women and children in front of a thatched whare komiti (committee house). It was taken at Haerehuka, near Otorohanga, in the upper central North Island of New Zealand, and measures 12.5 cm x 17.8 cm.

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Bunyip gold nugget, 1972

This is a gold nugget known as the 'Bunyip nugget'. It weighs 50 ounces (1.55 kg). It was found in the early 1970s by a farmer while ploughing near Bridgewater to the west of Bendigo in Victoria, and was purchased by the National Museum of Victoria (now Museum Victoria) in 1978 for $40,000.

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Penny-farthing bicycle, c1888

This is a penny-farthing, or high-wheel bicycle, built in Melbourne by H Bassett and Co in the late 1880s. Called 'The Victory', it has a 142-cm diameter front wheel and a smaller rear wheel, both with solid rubber tyres. The pedals are fixed directly to the axle of the front wheel. The leather seat sits on a 'cradle spring' ...

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Phar Lap

This is a photograph showing the mounted hide of Phar Lap, a champion racehorse in the late 1920s and early 1930s. He was a large chestnut-coloured gelding who stood 17.1 hands (about 174 cm) tall.