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Eddie Koiki Mabo Timeline

Accompanying website for the Eddie Koiki Mabo Timeline inside the Eddie Koiki Mabo Library, James Cook University


The first campus of the University College of Townsville opened in 1961 at Pimlico. The Campus at Pimlico was well known for teaching the visual arts. ‚Äč

Official opening of Pimlico campus

Official opening of Pimlico Campus 1961
©Image courtesy of JCU

Students on balconies at Pimlico Campus

Students stand on the balconies of Pimlico Campus
©Image courtesy of JCU


Koiki is employed by the University College, commencing the journey which will change the course of his life. While working as the campus gardener (1969 - 1975), he is periodically employed as a research assistant (1972 - 1985). Koiki commits his free time on campus to extending his education, learning about ‘white man’s views’ of his people. He attends lectures, studies colonial literature about his homeland, and teaches students about his culture and people.

Students would talk to Koiki and show interest in his gardening methods. He would show them how they could help, and while they worked together, he would share traditional stories.

Koiki later starts a Diploma of Teaching at the campus. 

Koiki in the classroom Koiki Mabo shares cultural knowledge with JCU students © Image courtesy of JCU
Koiki in the classroom Koiki Mabo shares cultural knowledge with JCU students © Image courtesy of JCU

We acknowledge the Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the first inhabitants of the nation and acknowledge Traditional Owners of the lands where our staff and students, live, learn and work.Acknowledgement of Country

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