Hi, we are anthropologists who worked in West New Britain between 1966 and
1985. We have several slides of the ceremonies at Gloucester when the area
established local government, including the celebratory dances, Ross Kelly who
was the kiap then and Sir David Hay pinning badges on the new councillors
Cheers and thanks so much for a splendid website. We are providing a link from
our West New Britain website to yours so that people browsing ours can find
... The circumstances are that PO Ross Kelly from Gloucester Station made an
election patrol in March of 1967 for the election of the first local
government council in the west New Britain area of the New Britain District.
Then in April the Administrator, Mr David Hay, came with the DC from Rabaul
(K. Dyer) and they held the ceremonial installation of the council. There were
three days of celebrations at Gloucester Station, with formal
"decommissioning" of the Luluais and Tultuls and the presentation of
councillor's badges to the newly elected members of Gloucester Local
Government Council. All the local areas sent dance groups to perform for namba
wan gavmen, and a great party was held with (as they used to say in the rural
US South) "all day preaching and dinner on the ground!" or ol i
toktok planti na kaikai em i gutpela tumas.
Two of the photos are of Ross Kelly on patrol. In one he is persuading the
folks of some of the interior villages that they have no choice but to
participate in the elections for members of the new local government council:
"Yu no stap long laik! Yu stap long orda!" (That's a direct quote.
We were there.) In the other he is instructing voters at Iboki Plantation on
how voting procedure works. Note that the lists of eligible voters are held
down by tins of bully beef!
Those were the days! Cheers, David & Dorothy (British Columbia, Canada)
(David & Dorothy can be
contacted at email, see their website)