Bark seized and auctioned

An Aboriginal man strips a quantity of bark from trees in the Wollombi district, most probably in a similar fashion to that done by his ancestors and Aboriginal people more widely for centuries before him. The trees are on Crown Land and he does not hold a licence to strip bark. The Colonial Secretary’s Office authorises a local official to “seize the Bark and dispose of the same by public Auction” (Letter signed by W Elyard, Colonial Secretary’s Office, 8 October 1856, courtesy of Carl Hoipo, Wollombi Historical Society).