Awakening: Stories from the Torres Strait

"Awakening" seeks to reconnect the spirit between people and their objects.

Influences on living culture

Cultural Advice: Visitors should be aware that the exhibition and website may include names, images and voices of deceased people that may cause sadness or distress to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. It is our intention to tell these stories and use imagery with good faith and with respect.

"Bringing the past forward, to create an understanding of the past for the future generations"

Uncle Thomas Sebasio, Elder, Erub Island

Significant events in Torres Strait history have affected the maintenance and continuation of Torres Strait Islander culture: contact with Europeans, the development of the pearling industry and the arrival of Christian missionaries. These processes caused immense social, religious and environmental disruption and changed Islander way of life.

Coming of the Light

Coming of the Light

Since the 1840s, The London Missionary Society (LMS) had been working to spread Christianity throughout the Southwest Pacific.

Pearling

Pearling

The development of the pearling industry in the mid 1800's marked the entry of the Torres Strait into the global economy.

Trochus shells & button blanks

Trochus shells & button blanks

Pearl shelling was concentrated in the Torres Strait, but trochus shells were also collected to make buttons.

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