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Research Guides


Land of Opportunity: Australia's post-war reconstruction


Papua and New Guinea

The civil administration of the Mandated Territory of New Guinea effectively ended on 24 January 1942, following Japanese landings in New Britain and New Ireland and attacks on airfields on the mainland of New Guinea. In Papua the Lieutenant-Governor announced the cessation of civil government on 14 February 1942. The army immediately began inducting administration officers and local civilians in both territories into administrative units and on 10 April 1942 they were combined to form the Australian New Guinea Administrative Unit (ANGAU). ANGAU was to remain responsible for local administration of Papua and New Guinea for the duration of the war and it was not completely dissolved until June 1946.

Led by Major General Basil Morris and Brigadier Donald Cleland, at first ANGAU was a small staff section at the military headquarters in Port Moresby controlling policing, welfare, labour, food supply, transport and plantations. It quickly expanded and took on additional functions and by the end of the war had more than 2000 Australian and 36,000 local employees. The District Services Branch mostly comprised former officers of the Papua or New Guinea administrations, who were immediately given military rank, and many of them returned to the civil administration after the war. Working closely with the ANGAU officers were the Royal Papuan Constabulary and thousands of Papuans and New Guineans who were conscripted to work as labour overseers, porters, road builders, storemen, medical orderlies, plantation workers and seamen. The withdrawal of the army and the release of ANGAU staff began soon after the end of the war. It had already moved its headquarters to Lae and on 30 October 1945 it handed over control of all of Papua and the Mandated Territory south of the Markham River to the acting Administrator, JK Murray. The remaining mainland districts followed on 28 February 1946 and by the end of June 1946 all the islands, with the exception of Manus Island, had been transferred to the civil administration.

Although a few officers publicly expressed their views about the future development of the Australian territories, ANGAU was not involved in high-level policy. It was another unit within the army, the Directorate of Research, that was able to devote much of its time and resources to speculation and post-war planning for the Australian territories. Set up in October 1943, the directorate was headed by Alf Conlon, who had close links with the Prime Minister and General Blamey. Conlon recruited a number of talented academics who worked in Victoria Barracks in Melbourne, carrying out research and producing papers and recommendations on a range of subjects. They included the amalgamation of the two territories (TP Fry), educational plans (Camilla Wedgwood), reforms of the labour system (Ian Hogbin), agricultural development (JK Murray), economic strategy (Kenneth Isles), and the establishment of a School of Civil Affairs which became the Australian School of Pacific Administration. They took a strong interest in changes in British colonial policy, exemplified by the Colonial Development and Welfare Act 1940. The directorate had  considerable influence on the thinking and policies of EJ Ward, the Minister for External Territories from 1943 to 1949, and the government generally. For instance, Ward's policy statement to Parliament in July 1945 echoed themes contained in an earlier conference paper by Fry, emphasising the protection of local communities,  control of economic development and the need for greater government expenditure.

In January 1944 Cabinet set up a sub-committee to discuss post-war policy for the territories. At its first meeting it directed the Department of External Territories to work in close conjunction with the Directorate of Research. The Secretary of the department was JR Halligan, who had been associated with the territories for 20 years and was on good terms with pre-war officials and settlers. Throughout the Ward years he fought hard to ensure that the department remained the principal source of advice on territories policy. In June 1944 the Cabinet sub-committee set up an inter-departmental committee, which included Conlon, Isles, HC Coombs, LF Crisp and WD Forsyth. In late 1944 Coombs complained to JB Chifley that the sub-committee was making a series of administrative decisions about the civil administration, economy and rehabilitation of Papua and New Guinea without considering more basic questions. He asked, for instance, whether its economic development was to be based on a plantation economy or on local agriculture and industry.

In February 1945 Crisp told John Dedman that the Department of Post War Reconstruction and the Directorate of Research tended to be in agreement on most subjects, placing greater emphasis on the welfare and development of the local people and their economy. They called for a Territories Welfare and Development Bill, an employment commission, a cooperative marketing scheme and a territories shipping corporation. With varying degrees of success, the Department of External Territories was resistant. Halligan, for instance, defended the indentured labour system, claiming that it was 'suited to the mentality of the native and his degree of development'.

The Conlon–Coombs alliance exerted a strong influence on Ward. In September 1944 he announced that the indentured labour system would be abolished. In early 1945 he accepted the recommendations of the inter-departmental committee that there be a single provisional administration for the two territories, officials would be appointed as temporary officers, and the Legislative Council would not be re-established during the life of the provisional administration. While Halligan suggested the names of several pre-war officials for the position of acting Administrator, Coombs recommended JK Murray as the outstanding applicant, with a wider grasp of the principles underlying colonial administration. Murray was duly appointed in September 1945. In introducing the Papua-New Guinea Provisional Administration Bill on 4 July 1945, Ward focused on the plans for a new Native Labour Ordinance, the primary task of rehabilitation after nearly four years of war, improvements in health and education, and controls on the return of European settlers and the resumption of trading activities. This new approach, quite distinct from pre-war policies, was to be vehemently opposed by the Pacific Territories Association and by the Pacific Islands Monthly.

By the early months of 1946 both the Directorate of Research and the inter-departmental committee had come to an end. Conlon hoped that the Australian Pacific Territories Research Council, which first met in 1945, would carry on the work of the directorate. The council was initially chaired by Conlon and several of his colleagues in the directorate were members, as were Coombs and Forsyth. Ward had given the council a very wide range of functions, causing alarm in the Department of External Territories. Efforts by Conlon and others to provide the council with its own staff were thwarted by the department. The non-departmental members gradually lost interest and it met for the last time in April 1947. Similarly, attempts to raise the status of the Australian School of Pacific Administration came to nothing and it remained essentially a training organisation.

Local administration and economic development

In 1947 another inter-departmental committee was established, mainly concerned with the economic development of Papua and New Guinea. Staff in the Bureau of Agricultural Economics and the Regional Planning Division of the Department of Post War Reconstruction undertook resources surveys and produced reports. In general, however, the formulation of post-war policies was left to the provisional administration in Port Moresby. On his own initiative, Murray produced a comprehensive memorandum on the policy of the administration in September 1947. He was strongly committed to the welfare of the local population, while at the same time maintaining friendly relations with the settlers. He had to work with a number of pre-war officials, who resisted reform, but he was supported by several younger officers with progressive attitudes. They included CJ Millar and David Fenbury (District Services and Native Affairs), John Gunther (Public Health) and WC Groves (Education). With increased financial support from the Commonwealth Government, the administration gave much more attention to agricultural development, cooperatives, health, education and local government, as well as the extension of control to isolated areas. In 1948 a Native Welfare Planning Committee, chaired by Groves, called for the improvement of village life and the mobilisation of the local people as a step towards eventual self-government.

In December 1946 the General Assembly of the United Nations approved a trusteeship agreement with Australia covering the former Mandated Territory of New Guinea. The 1948 Papua and New Guinea Bill provided for the unification of Papua and the Trust Territory. The United Nations Trusteeship Council expressed some reservations and the Bill was amended to ensure that the separate identity and status of New Guinea as a trust territory were maintained. The permanent administration of Papua New Guinea, with Murray as the Administrator, was established on 1 July 1949. In 1951 a Legislative Council was created for the combined territories, with 17 official and 12 non-official members. In the following year Donald Cleland replaced Murray as Administrator.

War Cabinet
WAR CABINET AGENDA FILES, 1939–46
Series: A2671
Visit to New Guinea by Director-General of Post War Reconstruction, 18 December 1945 556/1945
Cabinet
CURTIN, FORDE AND CHIFLEY MINISTRIES: CABINET MINUTES AND AGENDAS, 1941–49
Series: A2700
Territories of Papua and New Guinea: resumption of civil administration, 24 May 1945 814
Territories of Papua and New Guinea: finance, 6 March 1945 815
Papua New Guinea: native labour, 2 July 1945 872
Declaration of trusteeship in respect of Australian mandated territories, 17 January 1946 1042
Territories of Papua New Guinea: return of missionaries to New Guinea, 18 January 1946 1052
Rehabilitation of the native economy, 7 February 1946 1071
Re-establishment and reconstruction in New Guinea and Papua, 8 April 1946 1071A
Territory of Papua New Guinea: coordination of plans for development, 15 April 1947 1071B
Territory of Papua New Guinea: coordination of plans for development, 11 October 1949 1071D
Trusteeship agreement: New Guinea, 6 August 1946, 10 December 1946 1228
Territories of Papua and New Guinea: combined administration, 25 November 1947 1411
Territory of Papua New Guinea: administrative union, 15 June 1948 1476
Territory of Papua New Guinea: administrative union, 8 February 1949 1476A
Territory of Papua New Guinea: selection of site for administrative headquarters, 15 March 1949 1476B
CHIFLEY MINISTRY: WORKING PAPERS OF VARIOUS SUB-COMMITTEES OF CABINET, 1945–49
Series: A3306
Cabinet Sub-Committee on Re-establishment and Reconstruction in Papua New Guinea, 1946
Minutes of a meeting (21 March 1946) of the Cabinet sub-committee on the re-establishment and reconstruction of New Guinea and Papua (chair: JJ Dedman) and minutes of the subsequent meeting of the inter-departmental committee on the re-establishment and reconstruction of New Guinea and Papua (chair: HC Coombs).
23
Attorney General's Department
CORRESPONDENCE FILES, 1929–
Series: A432
Trusteeship Agreement for New Guinea, 1946–47
Correspondence, cables, statements and drafts relating to the Trusteeship Agreement for New Guinea, including comparisons with other agreements, discussions of the level of detail, and the views of the New Zealand, United Kingdom and United States governments.
1946/988
New Guinea Trusteeship Agreement: legislation, 1947
Correspondence of MC Boniwell and JR Halligan concerning the drafting of the 1947 New Guinea (Trusteeship Agreement) Bill.
1947/164
Australian New Guinea Administrative Unit (ANGAU)
PAPERS AND DISCUSSIONS OF A CONFERENCE OF OFFICERS OF ANGAU, 1944
Series: A9372

Papers of a conference (7–13 February 1944) at Port Moresby of officers of headquarters and district officers (chair: Brig. DM Cleland). The subjects include the administration of Papua and New Guinea, preventative medicine, welfare, education, labour, land tenure, agriculture and colonial administration generally.
REPORT ON THE ACTIVITIES OF ANGAU, 1944
Series: A9373

Report on the relief and rehabilitation activities of ANGAU in the Territory of Papua and the Mandated Territory of New Guinea, February 1942 – September 1944.
Bureau of Agricultural Economics
CORRESPONDENCE FILES, 1946–75
Series: A1422
Papua New Guinea planning: IDC proceedings, 1947–50
Minutes of meetings (April 1947 – March 1948) of an inter-departmental committee on the coordination of developmental plans in Papua and New Guinea (chair: JR Halligan), memoranda by the Bureau of Agricultural Economics, and correspondence regarding economic and social development and resources surveys. The correspondents include JG Crawford, JR Halligan, JK Murray and AS Brown.
12/2/1
Integration of New Guinea agriculture with Australian economy, 1947
A memorandum (27 May 1947) by the Bureau of Agricultural Economics on the integration of New Guinea agriculture with the Australian economy and correspondence on the production of particular crops and research undertaken by the bureau and the Rural Bank of New South Wales.
12/2/2
Papua New Guinea: policy of Administration, 1947–62
A printed memorandum (8 September 1947) by JK Murray on the policy of the administration and related correspondence.
12/2/27
Australian School of Pacific Administration, 1947–48
Correspondence of JG Crawford, RC Mills and JR Kerr on the research committees of the Australian School of Pacific Administration.
12/2/28
Papua New Guinea: Sub-Committee on Resources Survey, 1947–50
Correspondence and notes on the resources survey of New Guinea, soil testing, the interest of the British Overseas Food Corporation in New Guinea, and the relationship between the Bureau of Agricultural Economics and the Regional Planning Division of the Department of Post War Reconstruction. The correspondents include JG Crawford, A Wakefield and AS Brown.
12/2/36
Papua New Guinea Resources Survey Sub-Committee, 1947–50
Includes minutes of the first meeting (16 December 1947) of the Resources Survey Sub-Committee of the Inter-Departmental Committee for Coordination of Plans for the Development of Papua and New Guinea.
12/2/37
Papua New Guinea: IDC proceedings, 1949
Notes of an inter-departmental meeting (6 September 1949) on the reconstitution of the ministerial sub-committee and the inter-departmental committee on the coordination of plans for development, including a draft program of work.
12/2/41R
Commonwealth Office of Education
CORRESPONDENCE FILES, 1945–60
Series: A1361
Native education: Papua New Guinea, 1944–50 (2 parts)
Reports by CH Wedgwood on education in Papua and New Guinea and correspondence about the training of teachers and government support for mission schools. The correspondents include RC Mills, JK Murray and WC Groves.
7/6/2
Papua New Guinea: rehabilitation of native economy, 1946
A Cabinet submission (4 February 1946) by EJ Ward and correspondence about the visit of HC Coombs to Papua, reconstruction training in New Guinea and the role of the Office of Education in educational activities in the territories. The correspondents include WJ Weeden and HC Coombs.
7/16/5 Pt 1
Department of External Affairs
CORRESPONDENCE FILES, 1943–44
Series: A989
External territories: general, 1943–44
Memoranda, notes and other documents on the future of Papua New Guinea and Australia's territories generally. The authors include HV Evatt, H Williams, WD Forsyth, the Department of Post War Reconstruction and the Pacific Territories Association.
1943/735/144/3
External territories: Departmental Committee on Reconstruction, 1943–44
Cabinet submissions and notes of an inter-departmental meeting (11 August 1943) on post-war reconstruction in the territories.
1943/735/144/4
Pacific: Australian Territories Advisory Committee, 1944
Includes a Cabinet submission (28 September 1944), drafted by WD Forsyth, on post-war reconstruction in Papua and New Guinea.
1944/655/28
Pacific: External Territories Research Council, 1944
Correspondence (September 1944) concerning the formation of the External Territories Research Council.
1944/655/31
External territories: civil administration, 1944
Minutes and papers of the Ministerial Sub-Committee on the Territories of Papua and New Guinea and a minute (6 December 1944) from WD Forsyth to HV Evatt on the need for a post-war policy directive.
1944/735/144/6
CORRESPONDENCE FILES, 1945
Series: A1066
External territories: civil administration: Ministerial Committee, 1944–45
Agenda papers and minutes of the Ministerial Sub-Committee on Civil Administration in the Territories (chair: EJ Ward).
P45/72/4
External territories: policy, 1945–48
Includes a letter (14 July 1947) from JW Burton to JR Halligan on dangers arising from overseas interest in Australia's administration, including criticism by the Trusteeship Council.
P45/72/7
External territories: civil administration: IDC on Machinery, 1945
Minutes and report (23 February 1945) of an inter-departmental committee on the resumption of civil administration in Papua New Guinea (chair: JR Halligan), a summary of departmental views on economic policy and labour control in the territories, and drafts of a report on the amalgamation of the two territories.
P45/72/10
External territories: discussion, 1945
Newspaper articles on the work of the Australian administration in Papua and New Guinea, including American criticisms of Australian mandates.
P45/72/11
External territories: relief and rehabilitation: TP Fry's paper, 1945
Paper by TP Fry on relief and rehabilitation in Australia's territories in New Guinea, prepared for a conference of the Institute of Pacific Relations.
P45/72/14
CORRESPONDENCE FILES, 1946
Series: A1067
Trusteeship: agreement regarding New Guinea, 1946–47
Correspondence and notes on discussions with KH Bailey and MC Boniwell on the draft New Guinea Trusteeship Agreement and the amendment of the New Guinea Act.
IC46/101/1
CORRESPONDENCE FILES, 1948–89
Series: A1838
Territory of Papua New Guinea: proposed combined administration, 1946–48 (2 parts)
Draft legislation, statements and correspondence about the drafting of legislation for administrative union, the question of maintaining a separate identity for the Trust Territory, the Trusteeship Council, and relations between the Department of External Affairs and the Department of External Territories. The correspondents include JW Burton, TA Pyman and JR Halligan.
301/2/1
Papua New Guinea: proposed combined administration, 1948 (2 parts)
Reports, correspondence, cables and memoranda concerning debates about administrative unions in the Fourth Committee of the United Nations General Assembly, views of the Trusteeship Council and amendments to the New Guinea Bill. The correspondents include JK Murray, JW Burton and TA Pyman.
301/2/3
Territory of Papua and New Guinea: rehabilitation in New Guinea, 1946–52
Includes the report (21 January 1947) of the United Nations Economic and Social Council Working Group for Asia and the Far East on reconstruction in devastated areas of Papua and New Guinea.
301/3/2
Territory of Papua and New Guinea: United Nations Charter obligations and trusteeship obligations, 1948–50
Correspondence, cables and minutes, mainly on proceedings of the Fourth Committee of the United Nations General Assembly, including a statement (19 November 1948) on the position of New Guinea under the League of Nations Mandate System and the United Nations Trusteeship System.
306/1/3
Department of External Territories
CORRESPONDENCE FILES, 1928–56

Records relating to the government, administration and economic and social development of Papua, New Guinea, Norfolk Island and Nauru, and boards and agencies connected with the territories, such as the Australian School of Pacific Administration.

Series: A518
Trusteeship Council: Agreement for New Guinea, 1946–53
Annotated drafts of the New Guinea Trusteeship Agreement, newspaper cuttings, and correspondence (1946) with the Australian delegation at the United Nations.
103/2/1
Native labour: conference, 1944–45
Newspaper articles and correspondence about indentured labour in Papua and New Guinea, the proposed abolition of the indenture system, and a conference (1–2 December 1944) on indentured labour organised by the Department of External Territories in Sydney. The correspondents include EJ Ward, JR Halligan, EWP Chinnery, HC Coombs and Rev. JW Burton.
C213/3/2
Native labour: abolition of indenture system, 1945–50
A Cabinet submission (27 June 1945) by EJ Ward, memoranda and correspondence about the termination of the indenture system and arrangements for the changeover to free labour. The correspondents include JB Chifley, JR Halligan and JK Murray.
L213/3/2
Town planning reconstruction conference, 1946–47
Minutes of a conference (26 November 1946) on planning and reconstruction in Papua New Guinea (chair: JR Halligan) and correspondence between Halligan and HC Coombs concerning town plans for Port Moresby and Lae, and the site for the new capital of New Guinea.
K241/3/16
Papua New Guinea IDC: Sub-Committee on Physical Resources Survey, 1947–49
Agenda papers and minutes of the first meeting (16 December 1947) of the Sub-Committee on Physical Resources Survey and correspondence about a proposed soil survey of Papua and New Guinea.
AQ800/1/1D
Policy for administration of Papua New Guinea, 1946–50
Statements by the Administrator, the Department of External Territories and EJ Ward about administrative and economic policy, and newspaper cuttings about the development of Papua and New Guinea and the rehabilitation of the local people.
AL800/1/7 Pt 1
JK Murray, 1945–52 (2 parts)
Correspondence of JK Murray, EJ Ward and JR Halligan about Murray's appointment as Administrator of Papua and New Guinea, extensions to his appointment, the takeover in 1946 of Bougainville, New Britain and New Ireland, and plans for the establishment of the permanent administration.
I800/1/17
Criticism of administration in Territory of Papua and New Guinea, 1947–50
Extracts from Hansard and newspaper articles containing criticisms of the administration of Papua and New Guinea, the pace of economic development and policy for local people.
R800/1/7
Post war reconstruction: Cabinet Sub-Committee, 1944–45
Agenda papers and minutes of meetings (February 1944 – December 1945) of the Cabinet Sub-Committee on Papua and New Guinea (chair: EJ Ward), including papers on post-war planning, the rehabilitation of devastated areas, shipping requirements and the resumption of civil administration.
A815/1/1
Post war reconstruction: inter-departmental committees, 1943–45
Minutes of meetings (July–August 1943) of the Inter-Departmental Committee on Reconstruction in the Territories (chair: GW Paton, JR Halligan) and of meetings (October 1944 – March 1945) of the Inter-Departmental Committee on the Machinery of Government (chair: JR Halligan), statements by the Department of External Territories and related correspondence. The correspondents include EJ Ward, JR Halligan, FR Sinclair and A Conlon.
B815/1/1
Post war reconstruction: deputation by missionaries on education, medical services, land, 1944
Letters (7 February 1944) by HV Evatt and JR Halligan to EJ Ward concerning a deputation to Evatt by representatives of missionary societies expressing views about local labour, education, medical services and other matters in Papua and New Guinea.
L815/1/1
Post war reconstruction: native policy: representations, 1944–46
Statements, correspondence and newspaper articles on the treatment of the indigenous peoples of Papua and New Guinea and the indenture system.
N815/1/1
Post war reconstruction: Australian Pacific Territories Research Council, 1944–47 (2 parts)
Minutes of meetings, memoranda and correspondence concerning the establishment of the Australian Pacific Territories Research Council, the appointment as chairman of A Conlon (1944) and RC Mills (1946), the powers and functions of the council and its relationship with the Department of External Territories, and recommendations to the minister. The correspondents include EJ Ward, JR Halligan, R Melrose and JR Kerr.
R815/1/1
Post war reconstruction: general representations, 1942–45
Letters to JM Fraser, EJ Ward and JR Halligan from organisations and individuals regarding the post-war reconstruction, civil administration and economic development of Papua and New Guinea.
T815/1/1 Pt 1
Post war reconstruction: re-establishment of natives and rehabilitation of native economies, 1946–49 (2 parts)
Cabinet submissions, notes of a conference (27 June 1946) in Port Moresby on re-establishment (chair: RF Archer), reports by HC Coombs and other officers of the Department of Post War Reconstruction on their visits to New Guinea, and correspondence on the re-establishment of the local economy, the Commonwealth Reconstruction Training Scheme, allowances for local trainees and grants to village communities and individuals. The correspondents include JK Murray, HC Coombs, RF Archer, AW Paul and HJ Goodes.
AS815/1/1
Post war reconstruction: Civil Affairs Committee: report of Prof. GW Paton, 1943–44
Reports and correspondence on the resumption of civil administration in Papua and New Guinea and the study by GW Paton of British and American colonial policies. The correspondents include GW Paton, AP Elkin and S Bell.
D815/1/2
Post war reconstruction: Provisional Administrative Service, 1945
Includes minutes of a meeting (28 February 1945) of the Ministerial Sub-Committee on Territories on the resumption of civil administration in Papua and New Guinea and a letter (19 March 1945) from JR Halligan to former employees of the administration on the Provisional Administrative Service and employment conditions.
H815/1/2
Post war reconstruction: land settlement: policy, 1945–54
Correspondence and memoranda on land policy and settlement, including soldier settlement, in Papua New Guinea. The correspondents include EJ Ward, JJ Dedman, JR Halligan, JK Murray and C Champion.
A815/1/5 Pt 1
Native Labour Conference: proceedings, 1944 (2 parts)
Proceedings of a conference (1–2 December 1944) in Sydney on local labour (chair: JR Halligan). The participants included former officials, anthropologists and representatives of the Miners Association, the New Guinea Planters Association, the Pacific Territories Association and missionary organisations.
L-M840/1/1
Economic development of Territories: formation of 1949 Committee, 1949–50
A Cabinet submission (10 November 1949) by EJ Ward and correspondence concerning the reconstitution of an inter-departmental committee to plan the development of Papua New Guinea, economic and social progress in the territory, matters that required decisions by the government, and the relationship between the committee and the Department of External Territories. The correspondents included JB Chifley, JR Halligan, JK Murray and HC Coombs.
A927/1
Department of Post War Reconstruction
CORRESPONDENCE FILES, 1941–50
Series: A9816
Reconstruction and rehabilitation of New Guinea and Papua, 1943–46
Includes notes (7 July 1943) by LG Melville of a discussion with JR Halligan on the reconstruction of New Guinea, notes by LF Crisp of an inter-departmental meeting (11 August 1943) on reconstruction and rehabilitation in the territories, and notes by HC Coombs on the future of the territories.
1943/1206
New Guinea and Papua: miscellaneous correspondence, 1943–45
Correspondence including a letter (4 December 1943) from JW Burton to HC Coombs on the need for government action on the territories and a possible External Territories Developmental Fund.
1943/1451
External territories: indentured labour, 1942–44
Newspaper articles and correspondence of HC Coombs and JR Halligan about the abolition of the indentured labour system in Papua and New Guinea.
1944/579
External Territories Research Council, 1944–45
Correspondence concerning the formation of the External Territories Research Council, later re-named the Australian Pacific Territories Research Council.
1944/581
Territories: IDC on Administration, 1944–47
Minutes of meetings (October 1944 – March 1945) and report of the Inter-Departmental Committee on Civil Administration of the Territories (chair: JR Halligan) and minutes by LF Crisp to HC Coombs on the work of the committee and the position of the Department of External Territories.
1944/582
External Territories: Cabinet Sub-Committee, 1944–47 (2 parts)
Agenda papers and minutes (June 1944 – June 1945) of the Cabinet Sub-Committee on External Territories (chair: EJ Ward), minutes by HC Coombs and LF Crisp on the agendas, and correspondence concerning territories policy, the appointment of an Administrator, and re-establishment in New Guinea. The correspondents include EJ Ward, HC Coombs, LF Crisp, RF Archer and JR Halligan.
1944/583
Australian Pacific Territories Research Council, 1945–47
Includes minutes of a meeting (28 March 1946) of the Australian Pacific Territories Council (chair: EJ Ward) and a letter (14 May 1946) by AS Brown to RC Mills on the establishment of an economic commission for Papua and New Guinea.
1945/350
New Guinea: selection of site for capital, 1945–47
Correspondence of JJ Dedman, EJ Ward and HC Coombs about the visit of Coombs to New Guinea (December 1945) and the selection of a site for the capital of the territory.
1945/670
Papua New Guinea IDC, 1947–49 (3 parts)
Agenda papers and minutes of meetings (April 1947 – March 1948) of the Inter-Departmental Committee on the Coordination of Plans for the Development of Papua and New Guinea and correspondence on agricultural and timber production, relations between the administration and the Department of External Territories, and the reconstitution of the committee in 1949. The correspondents include EJ Ward, AS Brown, LF Crisp, HW Allen and JK Murray.
1947/144
Papua New Guinea IDC: health services, 1947–48
A report by JT Gunther on the proposed extension of the Department of Health in Papua New Guinea and minutes by HW Allen on health services and the Inter-Departmental Committee on Papua and New Guinea.
1947/296
Department of the Army
GENERAL AND CIVIL STAFF CORRESPONDENCE FILES, 1943–51
Series: MP742/1
UNRRA and Territories, 1944–45
Correspondence, minutes and estimates relating to a possible claim against UNRRA to assist in relief and rehabilitation in New Guinea, medical care, the relief of Chinese residents and the role of ANGAU. The correspondents include JR Halligan, AW Sheppard and A Conlon.
5/3/23
Prime Ministers Department
CORRESPONDENCE FILES, 1943–50
Series: A461
New Guinea: General (including re-Institution of civil administration), 1944–50 (2 Parts)
Cabinet submissions, prime ministerial statements, and correspondence of J Curtin and JB Chifley with EJ Ward, organisations and individuals about the restoration of civil administration in Papua and New Guinea, ordinances, conditions in the territories, commodity prices, the creation of a Legislative Council, the return of missionaries to New Guinea, and the formation of an inter-departmental committee (1949).
A412/1/8
Civil administration in territory of Papua, 1944–46
Correspondence concerning the appointment of the Provisional Administrator, administration of the Papuan people, the New Guinea Planters Association and the inquiry into the suspension of civil administration in Papua in 1942. The correspondents include J Curtin, EJ Ward, JR Halligan and L Lett.
B412/1/9
Treasury
CORRESPONDENCE FILES, 1901–76
Series: A571
Development of Papua New Guinea: policy, 1946–50
Correspondence concerning financial, agricultural and developmental policies in Papua and New Guinea, promotion of local peoples' welfare, formation of inter-departmental committees in 1947 and 1949, relationship between the Department of External Territories and the Administrator, and the role of the Commonwealth Bank in the development of New Guinea. The correspondents include JB Chifley, EJ Ward, HJ Goodes, JR Halligan, JK Murray and HC Coombs.
1947/1781 Pt 1
JK Murray
CORRESPONDENCE OF THE ADMINISTRATOR CONCERNING PAPUA NEW GUINEA, 1945–52
Series: M1765
Correspondence on appointment as Administrator, 1945–50
Documents relating to the temporary appointment of Murray as Administrator of Papua and New Guinea (1945) and correspondence on his permanent appointment (1949). The correspondents include EJ Ward, RT Gore, TP Fry, IF Champion and Murray.
1
Correspondence on matters relating to duties as Administrator, 1945–53
Miscellaneous correspondence referring to geological and agricultural research in Papua New Guinea, the Australian School of Pacific Administration, the proposed reconstitution of the Inter-Departmental Committee on Papua New Guinea, and the Mount Lamington eruption (1951).
2
Correspondence concerning the Trusteeship Council, 1948
Memoranda on the administrative union question and the International Court of Justice and correspondence (July–September 1948) between Murray and TA Pyman on the Trusteeship Council report on New Guinea and the composition of the proposed Legislative Council.
3
Sir Frederick Shedden
THE SHEDDEN COLLECTION, 1937–71
Series: A5954
Application to Australian Mandated Territories of principles of trusteeship, 1945–47
Minutes and agenda of the Defence Committee, correspondence, cables, speeches, extracts from Hansard and newspaper cuttings concerning the drafting of the New Guinea Trusteeship Agreement, discussions by United Nations committees, defence provisions in the agreement, and United States trusteeship of former Japanese possessions in the Pacific.
1834/3

Further reading

Downs, Ian, The Australian Trusteeship: Papua New Guinea, 194575, Australian Government Publishing Service, Canberra, 1980.

Jinks, B, 'Alfred Conlon, the Directorate of Research and New Guinea', Journal of Australian Studies, no. 12, 1983, pp. 21–33.

Jinks, B, 'Australia's post war policy for New Guinea and Papua', Journal of Pacific History, vol. 17, 1982, pp. 86–100.

Jinks, B, Policy planning and administration in Papua New Guinea, 1942–1952, with special reference to the role of Colonel JK Murray, PhD thesis, University of Sydney, 1975.

Powell, Alan, The Third Force: ANGAU's New Guinea war, 194246, Oxford University Press, Melbourne, 2003.

Wright, Huntley, 'Protecting the national interest: the Labor government and the reform of Australia's colonial policy, 1942–45', Labour History, no. 82, 2002, pp. 65–79.


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