Site Name Blue Mud Bay - Arnhem Land
Aboriginal Place Name
Language Group Yolngu, Wubuy
Colony SA
Present State/Territory NT
Police District Port Darwin
Latitude -13.341
Longitude 135.866
Date Between 8 Aug 1875 and 9 Aug 1875
Attack Time
Victims Aboriginal People
Victims Killed 40
Victims Killed Notes More than 40 Aboriginal people.
Attackers Colonisers: Explorers
Attackers Killed 1
Attackers Killed Notes Thomas Walker, Gold prospector
Weapons Used Firearms
Narrative Walker and his gold prospecting party left Union Camp on 1 June 1875. The Government provided five horses (of 15) and three months' provisions. At 11pm on 17 June, an Aboriginal group surprised the camp and wounded Charles Bridson. On 7 August the party reached Blue Mud Bay and on 9 August, Aboriginal people, who they thought had been friendly, attacked the camp, striking Walker, who died the next day, and David Marshall, who was severely wounded. The attacks were kept up for the ensuing nights, including attempts to burn the camp out. By the time the government cargo vessel Woolner from Port Darwin reached Union Camp at Blue Mud Bay on 21 October with a party of more prospectors, more than 40 Aboriginal people had been killed. Marshall recovered. Four government horses were lost. No gold was ever found.
Sources NTTG October 30 1875; Reid 1990: 69; Macknight 1981. (Sources PDF)
Corroboration Rating **