Site Name Bentinck Island, Gulf of Carpentaria
Aboriginal Place Name
Language Group Kaiadilt
Colony QLD
Present State/Territory QLD
Police District
Latitude -17.046
Longitude 139.496
Date Between 1 Jan 1918 and 31 Dec 1918
Attack Time day
Victims Aboriginal People
Victims Killed 11
Victims Killed Notes
Attackers Colonisers: Settler
Attackers Killed 0
Attackers Killed Notes
Transport Horse
Motive Opportunity
Weapons Used Firearms, sniders
Narrative According to Tim Bottoms, 'In 1914 a man named John McKenzie made an unauthorised attempt to settle on Bentinck Island. Dibirdibi (Roma Kelly) a Kaiadilt descendant from Bentinck, told linguist Nicholas Evans what her parents told her, that 'During his short time on Bentinck Island, McKenzie systematically tried to eliminate the Kaiadilt, riding across the island on horseback, and shooting down everyone but the girls he intended to rape. From oral sources Norman Tindale compiled a detailed genealogy from which he estimates that in about 1918 eleven people were killed, which Evans identifies as about 10 percent of the Kaiadilt population.'
Sources Bottoms 2013:169; Kelly and Evans, 1985:44-5. (Sources PDF)
Corroboration Rating **