This blog is part of an Australian Research Council funded project entitled ‘The Archaeology of the Native Mounted Police’, which commenced in early 2016 and will run for four years.
The project will investigate the range of historical archaeological evidence for Native Mounted Police (NMP) life, including their activities, living and working conditions, the domestic and hierarchical arrangements in camps, and the oral histories held by Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people about troopers, officers, the camps and conflict. It will explore the nexus between the NMP and local Aboriginal and non‐Aboriginal people by investigating the material evidence for the range of responses to the presence and activities of the NMP. It will chart this across key areas of Qld in order to examine the evolution of the NMP system, and the unfolding of the frontiers it created, across space and time. Finally,the project will also compare and contrast material culture and memory to explore a range of questions about how we understand frontier conflict, the process of colonialism and its effects, settler society’s relationships with Aboriginal peoples both then and now, and how such complexities may provide opportunities for ‘reflection upon the options we have ourselves’ (Lydon 1996:161).