Joe Eggmolesse and George Seymour discuss how the 150th anniversary of the arrival of South Sea Islanders to Maryborough should be recognised.
Joe Eggmolesse and George Seymour discuss how the 150th anniversary of the arrival of South Sea Islanders to Maryborough should be recognised. Contributed

150th anniversary of Islanders marked for November

PROGRESS is ramping up on recommendations to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the arrival of South Sea Islanders in Maryborough, with a working date for the celebration set for November 4.

The November date arose from a meeting organised by Cr Seymour and Mr Eggmolesse last week, with 32 people attending the event to brainstorm ideas for how the event would be celebrated.

Proposed by deputy mayor George Seymour earlier this month, the celebrations would commemorate the controversial history of the Islander population in the Fraser Coast, which goes back as far as 1867.

Mr Eggmolesse said the group was working towards their November date, but would look at other options at another meeting on April 8.

"We're hoping to put on displays and have a day in Queens Park, but they are only initial discussions," he said.

"Hopefully we'll be able to have a re-enactment of the landing of the Islanders walking off the ship - it's a fitting tribute to the Islander anniversary."

Deputy mayor George Seymour said the arrangement was still in its early stages, but reiterated it was up to the South Sea Islander community to direct how the event would be marked.

"I certainly will be helping with it (the event), and where needed I will be seeing what the council can do to assist...(but) it will be very much led by the South Sea Islander community," he said.

"We want to make sure it's celebrated the way they would like.

"We want it to be on that Saturday, as the Saturday after that is Remembrance Day. But that could change at the next meeting."



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