Compare past woes with present felicity. Ellen, Franklinford March 3, 1864
NAIDOC Week Public Walk: Mount Franklin to Clarke’s Pool, Franklinford
Presented by the Shire of Hepburn, the Dja Dja Wurrung Clans Aboriginal Corporation and the Great Dividing Trail Association
Sunday 15 July 2018, 9am-2.30pm
Who was Ellen? Ellen was a Dja Dja Wurrung woman who was born at the Loddon Aboriginal Protectorate in 1849, the daughter of Yerrebulluk (Dicky) and Brebie (Eliza). She was taught to read, write and do needlework at the Aboriginal school.
When the Prince of Wales and Queen Victoria married in 1863 the Dja Dja Wurrung people sent the Queen two letters written by Ellen and a collar she had crocheted. The Queen replied with her thanks, particularly asking Ellen to make it known to her people that she was concerned for their welfare. The Queen’s concern was warranted. Twenty-five years of contact with white people had already led, directly and indirectly, to the death of large numbers of the Dja Dja Wurrung people across central Victoria. Ellen was removed, with six other Aboriginal children and five adults (including her mother, Eliza) when the Aboriginal Station at Franklinford closed, to the new reserve at Coranderrk, near present day Healesville, in April 1864. Ellen herself died in 1874 at the age of 35, following the deaths of her three children from tuberculosis. Ellen’s life as well the lives of her parents is illustrative of many of the tumultuous changes that occurred to the Dja Dja Wurrung Nation and peoples in the three decades following first contact with Major Mitchell in 1836. Walk participants will receive more information about the history of the area and the Protectorate during the walk. Reconciliation Ellen’s Walk for Reconciliation is a joint initiative of the Shire of Hepburn, the Dja Dja Wurrung Clans Aboriginal Corporation and the Great Dividing Trail Association. It forms one of many positive community initiatives being undertaken locally from 2018 as part of the Hepburn Shire’s Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP).