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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

About the project

The members of the JCU community who work in and visit the Eddie Koiki Mabo Library have always been proud of the connection of the Library to the Mabo story. For many years a small timeline and poster display on the first floor of the Library conveyed the story of this connection to people visiting the Library. The Library's staff had long felt it would be fitting to have a larger, more permanent display telling the story of Eddie Koiki Mabo. An opportunity presented itself when an area of the ground floor Learning Commons required a redesign to make better use of the area, and it opened up just the space needed to tell this story. The University agreed, and provided the funding to develop this new display as part of JCU's 50th anniversary celebrations. 

With a remit to celebrate the 50th anniversary theme of "People, Place, Knowledge, Legacy", we agreed the space should also acknowledge the traditional owners of the land the Library building stands upon. As well, it was the perfect opportunity to share the history of this iconic building, designed by noted architect James Birrell.  Because of their expertise in creating interpretive displays, we connected with Queensland Museum Network  and worked with them to create two large panels of work illustrating the timelines of Mabo, the Country on which the Library sits and the Library building. A third panel incorporates a large digital screen, which allows for dynamic content and to build on the time points illustrated in the timeline. By its nature, a timeline can only deliver highlights; this website you are reading right now and the digital display allow us to expand on elements of all the threads of these three main stories.  If you revisit this site and view the digital display (available on this site as well as in the library) you will see it change over time. 

We hope you enjoy your experience of the website and digital display, and if you are able to visit us in person, we welcome you during our opening hours.

We welcome your feedback on The Mabo Interpretive Wall and invite you to contact us.

Mabo Interpretive Wall digital display

Mabo Interpretive Wall Panels

Explore this timeline of Eddie Koiki Mabo, known as the father of land rights in Australia, and understand a little more of the location and history of the Eddie Koiki Mabo Library.  The timeline is on display in the foyer of the library. 

Panel 1: Acknowledgement to Country, Library (inc. abridged timeline), and introduces Eddie Koiki Mabo.

Panel 2: Focuses on Eddie Koiki Mabo timeline with related events and imagery.

undefinedPanel 3: Digital display with hand-painted symbols by artist Bernadette Boscacci that relate to the timeline and shared cultural imagery: A shooting star, which is significant to the Bindal people, and the Tagai constellation.

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