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Tom 'Putuparri' Lawford

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Tom 'Putuparri' Lawford’s people have lived in the desert of Western Australia for over forty thousand years. They lived a nomadic life knowing they could always retreat to their sacred waterholes when times were hard. Kurtal is one of the most important of these waterholes in the heart of the Great Sandy Desert. It is the site where underground artisan water known as ‘jila’ or ‘living water’ comes to the surface and it is where the spirits of Putuparri's people return to when they die.

When Europeans arrived, their cattle and horses fouled the water holes and forced Aboriginal people off their land. Many of them worked on cattle stations where they retained a physical link to their Country. But in the late 1960s when the courts introduced equal pay, many Aboriginal people were forced off the stations into towns like Fitzroy Crossing.

Putuparri grew up in Fitzroy Crossing as part of an activist family. He was ten years old when he joined the picket line at Noonkanbah Station to fight oil-drilling on sacred land.

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Displaying 1 video of 1 matching video containing
Tom 'Putuparri' Lawford



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