Item F2619 - Diary kept at Banka Banka Station, 1959

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Diary kept at Banka Banka Station, 1959


  • 1959 (Creation)

Level of description


Extent and medium

1 volume ; 33 cm.

Context area

Name of creator


Administrative history

Banka Banka Station was established by Thomas Nugent as a cattle station in 1895. Nugent left the station to his sister, Mary Ambrose. The Ambrose family owned and ran the station until Paddy Ambrose put Banka Banka on the market in 1940. Philip (Ted) Ward and Mary Alice Ward (nee McEntyre) bought it on 20 February 1941. Capital from the Wards' Blue Moon Mine was used for improvements and developments of the station. Robert Archibald Christie, nephew of Philip Ward, and Valerie Christie (nee Hewitt) were managing the Station when Ted Ward died on 17 March 1959. Valmae Edwards (née, Reid, wife of Donald Leslie Edwards) and Mary Ward were executors of Philip Wards estate. Probate was granted on 5 September 1961.

Mary Ward ran the station until 1970. Mary Ward owned 13 of the 24 shares in Banka Banka Station; the 24 shares were split between 6 owners. Banka Bank Station was put on the market in 1970. The title for the property was not transferred to the new owner, Nelson Bunker-Hunt, until 9 June 1972. In 1987 it was sold to Legnem Pty Ltd; in 1991 it was purchased by Brunchilly Pty Ltd Standbroke Pastoral Co. In 2004 S. Kidman & Co Ltd purchased the property.

In 2010 the property was purchased on behalf of the Aboriginal people by Indigenous Land and Sea Corporation (ILSC). Until December 2018 Australian Indigenous Agribusiness company managed the pastoral operation. At some point its name has been changed to Banka Banka West Station. In 2020 the Kunapa, Kangwarla, Kanturrpa, Marnitkara, Ngarrka and Pirrtangu Aboriginal groups were recognised as holding Native Title to Banka Banka West Station.

Archival history

Donated by Valerie Edwards, niece of Mary and Ted Ward.

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

Content and structure area

Scope and content

Records daily weather conditions, station activities, work undertaken. Written in a Week on a Page Invicta Australian Economic Diary No. 7 : 1959. For almost every day there is an entry giving the temperature for the day, wind direction, rain and weather details. Activities noted for each day include who went to do which farm repairs, what creeks were running, goods and mail deliveries, illnesses, arrivals and visitors. There is a brief entry on 17 March, saying Philip (Ted) Ward had died in Longreach. There are general references to Australian Aboriginal people employed on the station, without names. Daily entries have been written by several people, some in third person and some in first person. There are no financial or asset statements or lists of workers. Inside cover has contact details for selected friends and relatives, like DL and V Edwards.
Includes colour negative of painting of Banka Banka Station by Hilda Tuxworth.

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Conditions of access and use area

Conditions governing access

Unrestricted access.

Conditions governing reproduction

Copyright applies.

Language of material

  • English

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Allied materials area

Existence and location of originals

Existence and location of copies

Digital copy held in Fryer Library (Restricted) collection in UQ eSpace.

Related units of description

Further Banka Banka diaries (1928-1929, 1934-1936, 1941-1943) held in Hilda Tuxworth manuscript collection UQFL102.

Related descriptions

Notes area


Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples are warned that this manuscript may contain names of Aboriginal and Islander people now deceased. This manuscript may contain culturally sensitive words or descriptions, some of which might not normally be used in certain public or community contexts.

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Dates of creation revision deletion

Revised, Linda Justo, 5-Apr-2022. Migrated from LMS: April 2019, P.A.




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