Working with Yowie, revealing unknown massacre sites, healing past and future, by SunBôw:
While the lockdown has made traveling close to impossible, progress keeps happening on the spiritual path. I have not posted much lately on here, waiting for the right time to disclose some of the sensitive discoveries I have been guided to do recently. Here is a summarized account of the lost history we have been piecing together in the last weeks.
The first time I went to Deebing Creek two months ago, I heard the story of a massacre of 50 to 60 children, which was only one of at least three known massacres on those grounds. The next day, I walked the land and soon came upon a large dug pit, about fifty by one hundred meters, where the ground seemed to be covered with countless bones.
I returned to Deebing Creek three weeks later (see photos and videos) and started to get involved with the community which has been defending these ancestral grounds officially listed as Heritage from destruction by urban encroachment. On my first day there, I walked the bush and was met by the local Yowie clan. That night and for that whole week, I learned that the Yowies were really well known by the local community with whom I got to share some information and messages from them. I wrote these stories before, so won’t repeat here.
After my encounter with the Yowies, I visited again the bone pit and examined closer, with the guidance of the Yowies telling me this had to be known and addressed. I had no idea yet of what to do, as I didn’t meet much interest at first when I mentioned it at camp. It is understandable that to face and study such a site requires a good amount of moral strength and it is harder for the Original Peoples whose very ancestors were the victims. The trauma has been transmitted through generations and is still very present with unhealed wounds and scars. So it felt like it was too hard for them at first to look into it. In Aboriginal cultures, there is also a strong taboo concerning the mention of deceased persons, which is why articles and videos mentioning or showing deceased Aboriginal persons usually come with a disclaimer in Australia, as a warning to them.
“WARNING: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that the following post may contain images and names of deceased persons.”
That’s when I met Kris Bunda aka Yowie First Nation, with whom I had been communicating and who has been my host with her family during this lockdown. She has had close communication with the Yowies and the spirit world and they told me she was the one who could carry on this mission to investigate the massacre sites, which she has been doing very well. But let us first start with a brief historical introduction.
A brief history of massacres in Australia
On this day of April 20th, 250 years ago, the Original Peoples of Australia saw Cook’s ship for the first time. It looked to them like a giant pelican, which is known to be greedy for stealing fish, so they called him the Greedy Pelican and smoke signals rose along the coast to warn all the tribes of his coming. They were right as it marked the beginning of violent land grab through genocide for the oldest continuous cultures on the planet.
Cook claimed the land through the false doctrine of Terra Nullis pretending that no one lived on the land, while the oldest cultures on Earth had been there for millennia. Eighteen years later, the First Fleet debarked in Sydney with a first shipment of convicts to settle the new colony. Soon the killings started and within a decade, hardly any Aboriginal were left in the Sydney area. Contaminated blankets also brought devastating epidemics, as the British among others had been practicing on Natives in America.
By the early 1800’s, murders and massacres of Aboriginals had become a common practice, largely sanctioned by the governing authorities and official policies, and those crimes were left without consequences for the perpetrators. The killers included local ranchers, private militias, military and police corps including parties of the Native Police that was created with survivors of genocides who were enrolled and sent on “punitive expeditions” against other tribes in distant regions. Other forms of genocidal acts included distributions of contaminated blankets and mass poisoning, which was sometimes conducted by giving food to the Aboriginal or leaving it near their camps, or by the poisoning of water holes they were depending on for their survival.
Over the decades, massacres became a business, as land grab was intensifying, and a lucrative market of body parts flourished. Tens of thousands of Aboriginals were killed for their body parts, most often their heads, that were shipped to Europe for museums and private collections, or sometimes kept by Australian collectors. Some collected ears, scalps, genitalia or other body parts that they exhibited as grim hunting trophies.
Those mass killings also developed their techniques in disposing of the corpses. Often, when it was only a few individuals that were killed, the bodies were left to rot in the open. When the massacres involved more victims, the killers would often drag the bodies into piles and lit pyres over them. In some cases, quicklime or sand were used to cover the dead. Massacres of Aboriginal occurred as late as the 1960’s in West Australia and the Northern Territory, often using the same techniques and without any consequences. It was only then that the Aboriginals were removed by law from the fauna, as humans.
It is also important to realize that Australia also has a long history of slavery, starting since the beginning of colonization well into the 20th century. Aboriginals were enrolled by force or kept into forced labor on plantations, ranches and in mines. They were kept in chains, whipped or beaten, starved and killed without consequences until the late 1800’s, when some 80,000 Pacific Islanders were blackbirded to Australia as a new slave labor force. Since England had banned slavery, these slaves were called indentured workers, but were not treated differently. The practice of not paying the Aboriginals for their work was maintained until late in the 20th century, and is known as “stolen wages”.
To complete this summary of the Australian genocide, we must mention the stolen generations. After the first few decades of the genocide, the colonialists found ways to take control over the survivors. While some men were enrolled in the Native Police and sent on raids in other regions, the rest of the tribes were driven to missions, where they were told they could be safe. There, they we taught to adopt the new imposed ways, rules, language and government. Missions were most often run by religious congregations, but often had some kind of permission and support from the governments. Missions were somewhat like reservations where the Aboriginals were allowed to live, but that they couldn’t leave without a written permission.
Missions were also places were the local ranchers and farmers would come to pick Aboriginals for free labor on their estates, as maids or general laborers. By the late 19th century, it had become a common practice sanctioned by the governments to forcibly separate families, spouses or remove children from their parents to send them in distant missions into forced assimilation programs. Missions turned into prison camps gathering individuals from various cultures, who were forbidden to speak their language or practice their ways, and indoctrinated into christianity and the colonialist paradigm.
By the turn of the 20th century, mission slowly disappeared to be replaced by boarding schools concentrating on cultural and racial assimilation of the children, targeting especially those of mixed blood with eugenist ideologies to breed out the Aboriginals. Those prison schools were the scene of horrific abuses, like the ones in America.
That period that the Australian Original Peoples call “the killing times” has been hidden, covered up and denied by the mainstream academics and the Australian society in general. Hence, it has been little documented and studied, save by a few historians and anthropologists, but it has left many stories and memories that have been passed on through the generations by the Original Peoples who are the survivors of the massacres.
A couple years ago, an exhaustive study published at Canberra University identifies on the map 311 massacre sites, yet the author concluded that through her research she discovered that there could be well over 500 massacre sites in this country. She defines a massacre by the murdering of six or more individuals at the same place and time. This list does not include the murders of countless individuals or smaller family groups.
To put in perspective, there are only twelve massacres of settlers by the Aboriginals in all of Australian recorded history, always as retaliations. They’re view of warfare was for protection from an invader, rather than the colonialist genocidal systemic policy.
Massacres at Deebing Creek
It was in the 1820’s that the Yugarra and neighboring tribes of southeast Queensland faced the aggressors. The tribes were strong and numerous, one chief was said to be able to raise 3,000 warriors. Patrick Logan came with troops and convicts to try to invade the land, but they were pushed back and killed, while boulders were thrown at them for the bush, and the locals say the Yowies threw them. I wrote this story in previous posts.
Logan discovered lime deposit just a few miles from Deebing Creek, which became a busy settlement with limestone mines and kilns, called Limestone, the actual Ipswitch. The land where the kilns were built were sacred gathering grounds for the tribes, who kept living there until 1862, when the last ones were evicted and sent to Deebing Creek.
From the 1830’s until almost the end of the century, massacres kept multiplying and intensifying across Australia, and southeast Queensland in particular was severely plagued. It would be too long to list here the multiple recorded massacres during that period alone and only for this region. Since those crimes were most often committed in the bush, without other witnesses than the perpetrators who would often attempt to cover up traces of their killings, there are many massacres that eluded written history.
While the names of most perpetrators of mass killings were forgotten, several were recorded. In 1857, after 60 of them were poisoned by the Fraser family, the Yiman tribe killed seven members of that family. This triggered a series of punitive expeditions by several killing parties that caused the near extermination of the Yiman and many massacres in surrounding tribes. In these Frontier Wars, the Aboriginals were strictly keeping a defensive position, with rare retaliations that would cost them any lives.
The Fraser brothers in particular made massacre their business and went on killing rampages for many years, murdering indiscriminately all Aboriginals they would come across. They were even reported as murdering Aboriginals in cities in broad daylight and be left free to go, without any consequences. They often visited Limestone and we can guess that they were of using quicklime to dispose of the bodies. Today, the Fraser family owns large estates, including the lands at Deebing Creek, which they now rent to building contractors. Knowing how they acquired these lands raises the question if they are the legitimate owners and have any authority over lands they took through genocide.
It is unsure what happened to the group that was displaced in 1862 from Limestone to Deebing Creek and nearby Purga. The oral tradition which had its transmission severely damaged during the forced assimilation of the missions period, has kept stories and memories of massacres, but many details like the dates have been forgotten and lost.
There is a local story of a young warrior who escaped from a massacre and hid in the next gully, and then came back on his own to attack the aggressors and killed a few of them before he was finally put to death. He is known as the Danger Gully Dog and his soul is said to still haunt the area around the gully, where he is heard at night.
It was not until 1888 that the Deebing Creek Mission was established by presbyterian missionaries with government funding. They proceeded in moving many Aboriginals and mainly children to the mission grounds, as they were being paid by the number of residents. Many settlers opposed the establishment of missions seen as safe refuges for Aboriginals guaranteeing them some type of entitlement to some lands, while others were taking advantage of the free labor the missions offered for their estates. But even in missions the Aboriginals were not safe and some murders and massacres still happened.
In 1896, gunmen came to the Deebing Creek Mission and shot the whole group of school children. Their white teacher, Mrs. Jones, was killed in the crossfire and a tombstone with her name is still the only one standing today in the mission’s old cemetery. A radar survey conducted there in 2016 discovered a mass grave with approximately thirteen skeletons, but no further investigation was done to look for other mass graves or victims.
This had the Deebing Creek Mission listed as a Heritage site of historical and cultural significance. According to the Elders, fifty to sixty children were killed at one time, but it is unclear if that was the time. The records show a few population declines at the mission during the three decades of its existence. In it unsure also why the mission closed in 1915 and a handful of survivors were sent to nearby Purga Mission, soon to be closed too. Some clues indicate that there may have been a mass dying, either from disease or poisoning, but there is not enough evidence uncovered yet to confirm this possibility.
The significance of Deebing Creek from our investigation
It would be safe to say that Deebing Creek has been occupied for several tens of thousands of years or more. Ancient stone tools and flaked stones are found on site. There are several ancient billabongs or water holes, that were often dug or enlarged around gullies, which could have sustained large populations. Some Bora rings and other stone arrangements like alignments are also present on the grounds. Another interesting clue is the presence of prickly pear cacti scattered across the land, some of considerable age, which is an imported species that was planted and grown. Some scar trees, old boomerangs and throwing sticks were also found on the mission site.
One of the most impressive features at the mission site is the majestic Bunya Pine towering above the other trees. Bunya Pines can grow over 50 meters high and live five hundred years, and this one could be one of the tallest standing on Earth. They are native of southeastern Queensland but their seeds were carried and planted from northern Queensland to central New South Wales. The Bunya trees were highly sacred to the Aboriginals and planted on ceremonial and gathering grounds. This one in Deebing Creek is facing two giant birthing trees, there was an ancient Bora ring at its feet and others close by. The Bunya gives its abundant rich nuts from its football size cones once about every three years. When the nuts were getting ready, it was the duty of the local tribes to send messengers to neighboring tribes and invite them for the harvest. There was an agreement between the tribes that made the sites of Bunya trees sacred grounds for all, where they would gather, trade, intermarry and always maintain Peace.
Birthing trees near the Bunya, women sites
Apart from the historical mission cemetery, there are ancient burials in some areas, as people have lived and died here for several millennia. Although the stories of massacres have been passed on, there had never been any sites located or identified officially so far. Those stories could have been considered as mere legends, until some evidence was found to prove their veracity. This is what I was guided to work on in the last month.
As mentioned above, in February I first found the site that I designate as the large pit. Two days ago, we discovered two more massacre sites nearby. The following information might be the hardest to read of this whole report, as it addresses horrific acts of barbarism. But these hidden pages of history need to come to light in this day and age.
When I visit those sites, I always first start with prayers for the healing of the souls and the removal of the sufferings, and for the land to be healed and protected. I was guided to bring them branches from the sacred Bunya tree which they used to honor to soothe and heal the souls of the victims. I leave offerings that the spirits have accepted and taken. This whole work is done with the help of spiritual guides including the Yowies.
The main large pit was dug out by widening a gully which was part of a long billabong. The entire pit is about 50 meters wide by 100 meters long and can be seen on google Earth. There are evidences of multiples uses in different occasions at this same site, which was in fact a dumping ground to dispose of corpses of the massacred. The pit may contain the bones of hundreds of victims, from the amount scattered on the surface.
The way used to dispose of the bodies was to pile them up, cover them with quicklime and lit a pyre over them. The quicklime would cook and set into the tissues, turning the corpses as limestone statues. The piles would then be buried with sand to form mounds. There are at least ten such mounds easily identifiable in the large pit, with as many more around adjacent to the banks. Their sizes average between two to five meters tall, by about three to ten meters in width, but they have been washed off, exposing heaps of bones and deposits of lime.
In one of smaller mounds on the edge they didn’t use quicklime, leaving half burnt piece of wood sticking out and charred bones that were not mineralized by lime.
Behind it, there is a smaller pit, about five meters across, which was apparently dug first. It is filled with similar calcified bones mostly of infants, but they were laid at the bottom of the pit and not piled up in mounds like in the large pit next to it. The mounds in the large pit show calcified remains sticking out and washing down their slopes, as well as a large quantity of lime washing off from them into patches at the bottom of the pit.
Apart from pieces of jaws and fragments of parietal or temporal plates, there seems to be no complete skulls on site, which might indicate that the heads were severed and sold on the body parts trade, or else they were crushed to piece to leave no obvious traces, but the first hypothesis is more plausible. there is also an isolated small mound of lime in the middle of the pit, which is about the size of a child, but without room for the head.
There is also a large number of bottles and broken glass on site. Some could have been thrown out at a later date, but some pieces stick out of the mounds and out of the ground. There are many liquor bottles but also a considerable amount of chemical products which could have been used as poison. One shard from a moonshine jar shows the date of 1878. The site was apparently used as a dump around the 1940’s and ’50’s, with rusted car parts, old tools and fridges laying just on the edge of the pit, but evidence shows that many bottles were left or broken there when the corpses were disposed of.
The other massacre site we discovered this week is in the gully behind the Bunya tree, near the old mission school. We located four pyre sites with charcoal and similarly calcified bones, but they were not in mounds, rather roughly buried in sand at the bottom of the gully, which was also part of a long billabong still holding water. It seems like the disposal of massacred bodies often happened in the water catchment holes to poison the water and prevent other people from returning to live there.
There is little documentation about quicklime burials, but a study on ancient sites states the following facts: “Analysis of the bones and lime have proven that the quicklime burials are the result of cremation with the use of crushed rock carbonate, which must have covered the dead body… During cremation, there is an exchange of the carbon between de bioapatite of the bone of the body on the one hand and the atmosphere, the fuel and the crushed limestone on the other hand. Due to this the cremated bones take up infinite old carbon from the limestone and therefore have an apparent age that can be even older than the first human occupation. Furthermore, recent studies have demonstrated that the lowest level of almost all lime burials consists of badly cremated bones (black instead of white) and soil but without lime.”
Another source describes quicklime burials this way: “Quicklime does have uses for burials. In the Red Cross Emergency Relief Items Catalogue, quicklime and lime are listed as a tool for aiding in proper disposal of human remains that cannot be afforded a deep burial. However, the goal of the product is not to destroy the body but rather to prevent putrefaction that create odor, and attracts flies and animals. Quicklime was often used over plague or cholera burials to prevent the spread of disease… Again, in practical usage quicklime is being used not to destroy but to prevent disease from spreading. Lime is one of the major finds in many forensics cases dealing with clandestine burials due to this popular notion of its ability to remove the identity of the deceased and destroy the remains. A new study by Schotsmans et al. (2012) used pig corpses to test different types of lime to see how it changed the remains. The pigs were put into graves, covered with different types and amounts of lime, buried, and were left for six months. Two pigs were buried with lime as the control group. The pigs buried without lime were mostly skeletonized and highly decayed, the two pigs buried with hydrated lime were very well preserved and had little decay, and the two pigs buried with quicklime were fairly preserved with some decay within the body. In general, they discovered that the lime was highly effective in preventing decay and protecting the body, rather than destroying it.”
We took hundreds of photos and have been doing intensive research into the history of the place. The Aboriginal liaison police officers have been notified and we work on producing a detailed and well documented report to have these sites listed and add to the protection status of this ancestral homeland to prevent its destruction by urbanization. The territory is also hosting a rich wildlife including kangaroos, koalas, dingoes, goanas, possums, turtles, ducks, and a diversity of other birds and animals.
The territory around Deebing Creek is roughly three square kilometers of bush and meadows, but it is dwindling by the day as it is surrounded by urban developments on all sides and major construction projects are opening new roads since last month.
We offer our support to the Sovereignty Camp occupying the land without interruption since almost two years, while the first protests to protect Deebing Creek were initiated four decades ago. It has always been and will always be Aboriginal land.
What about the Yowie?
Some might wonder what all of this has to do with the Hairy Humanoids, generally known as Yowie here, but also by a number of other names. Well, they have been manifesting and guiding us on this mission to support a community that knows them very well. It is no coincidence if I have been guided to stay and work with Yowie First Nation during the last month, as she also works closely with her Yowie guides and the spirit world. Just abut every time we go on the grounds, the Yowies and other spirit beings manifest in different ways, with visual apparitions, sounds, footprints or structures built out of branches. We see many small dome huts of the Junjeri around, as well as the tree arrangements of the Yowies or Dooligah. Their faces and shapes show up at times on some photos, and they were very present around the Bunya tree.
They have asked since I met them here to help support in protecting these lands, which are sacred grounds also for them, and they have provided guidance and support in doing the mission they ask us to do. None of this would have happened without their guidance.
Please send your prayers and support to help save Deebing Creek from destruction and have these sacred ancestral grounds protected for the future generations to flourish.
To conclude this article, I would like to share this short video that was sent to me by Uncle Wayne Thorpe who welcomed me with a ceremony when I arrived in Australia.
In this video he made, he tells the story of how, 250 years ago, his ancestors discovered Cook, and smoke signals were sent along the coast to warn the tribes of his coming.
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