From the early nineteenth century many of the ships arriving in Port Jackson, NSW were required to undergo quarantine at North Head, Manly. Thousands of people passed through this site during its 150 year history. Historic inscriptions remain as one of the most intriguing archaeological legacies of this period. In this paper we revisit recordings of these inscriptions and consider what they may tell us about the people who inhabited the site. Using contemporary theories on the material culture of travel and memorialisation we explore the inscriptions as commemorative gestures, or mementoes of passage. In the process we reflect on our own professional ties to the past.
|Australasian Historical Archaeology
|Published - 2011