The Info List - Territory Of Papua

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The Territory of Papua
Territory of Papua
comprised the southeastern quarter of the island of New Guinea
New Guinea
from 1883 to 1975. In 1883, the Government of Queensland
annexed this territory for the British Empire.[2] The United Kingdom
United Kingdom
Government refused to ratify the annexation but in 1884 a Protectorate was proclaimed over the territory, then called "British New Guinea". There is a certain ambiguity about the exact date on which the entire territory was annexed by the British. The Papua Act 1905 recites that this happened "on or about" 4 September 1888.[3] On 18 March 1902, the Territory was placed under the authority of the Commonwealth of Australia.[4] Resolutions of acceptance were passed by the Commonwealth Parliament, who accepted the territory under the name of Papua.[3] In 1949, the Territory and the Territory of New Guinea
Territory of New Guinea
were established in an administrative union by the name of the Territory of Papua and New Guinea.[5] That administrative union was renamed as Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea
in 1971.[6] Notwithstanding that it was part of an administrative union, the Territory of Papua
Territory of Papua
at all times retained a distinct legal status and identity; it was a Possession of the Crown whereas the Territory of New Guinea
Territory of New Guinea
was initially a League of Nations mandate territory and subsequently a United Nations trust territory. This important legal and political distinction remained until the advent of the Independent State of Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea
in 1975. Papua made up roughly half of the current-day Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea
and contained the territory's capital, Port Moresby, which then became the capital of the independent country.


1 History

1.1 Background 1.2 Annexation 1.3 World War II 1.4 Administrative unification with New Guinea

2 See also 3 References


British flag raised in 1883 when Queensland
annexed the southern part of New Guinea

Background[edit] Archeological evidence suggests that humans arrived on New Guinea
New Guinea
at least 60,000 years ago. These Melanesian
people developed stone tools and agriculture. Portuguese and Spanish navigators sailing in the South Pacific entered New Guinea
New Guinea
waters in the early part of the 16th century and in 1526-27, Don Jorge de Meneses came upon the principal island "Papua". In 1545, the Spaniard Íñigo Ortiz de Retez
Íñigo Ortiz de Retez
gave the island the name "New Guinea" owing to what he saw as a resemblance between the islands' inhabitants and those found on the African Guinea coast. Knowledge of the interior of the island remained scant for several centuries after these initial European encounters.[7] Annexation[edit] In 1883 Sir Thomas McIlwraith, the Premier of Queensland, ordered Henry Chester (1832–1914), the Police Magistrate on Thursday Island, to proceed to Port Moresby
Port Moresby
and annex New Guinea
New Guinea
and adjacent islands in the name of the British government. Chester made the proclamation on 4 April 1883, but the British government repudiated the action. On 6 November 1884, after the Australian colonies had promised financial support, the territory became a British protectorate. On 4 September 1888 it was annexed, together with some adjacent islands, by Britain as British New Guinea. The northern part of modern Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea
was under German commercial control from 1884 and under direct rule by the German government in 1899, as the larger part of the colony of German New Guinea, then known as Kaiser-Wilhelmsland. In 1902, Papua was effectively transferred to the authority of the new British dominion of Australia. With the passage of the Papua Act of 1905, the area was officially renamed the Territory of Papua, and Australian administration became formal in 1906. At the outbreak of the First World War
First World War
in 1914 Australia
captured Kaiser-Wilhelmsland
following the landing on 11 September 1914 of the 2000 man Australian Naval and Military Expeditionary Force. The Australian takeover of New Guinea
New Guinea
was formalised by the Treaty of Versailles in 1919. World War II[edit]

Australian troops at Milne Bay, Papua. The Australian army was the first to inflict defeat on the Imperial Japanese Army
Imperial Japanese Army
during World War II at the Battle of Milne Bay
Battle of Milne Bay
of August-September 1942.

Shortly after the start of the Pacific War, the island of New Guinea was invaded by the Japanese. Papua was the least affected region. Most of West Papua, at that time known as Dutch New Guinea, was occupied, as were large parts of the Territory of New Guinea
Territory of New Guinea
(the former German New Guinea, which was also under Australian rule after World War I), but Papua was protected to a large extent by its southern location and the near-impassable Owen Stanley Ranges
Owen Stanley Ranges
to the north. Civil administration was suspended during the war and both territories (Papua and New Guinea) were placed under martial law for the duration.[citation needed] The New Guinea campaign
New Guinea campaign
opened with the battles for New Britain and New Ireland in the Territory of New Guinea
Territory of New Guinea
in 1942. Rabaul, the capital of the Territory, was overwhelmed on 22–23 January and was established as a major Japanese base from where the Japanese landed on mainland New Guinea
New Guinea
and advanced towards Port Moresby
Port Moresby
and Australia.[8] Having had their initial effort to capture Port Moresby by a seaborne invasion disrupted by the U.S. Navy
U.S. Navy
in the Battle of the Coral Sea, the Japanese attempted a landward attack from the north via the Kokoda Track. From July 1942, a few Australian reserve battalions, many of them very young and untrained, fought a stubborn rearguard action against the Japanese attack, over the rugged Owen Stanley Ranges.[9] The militia, worn out and severely depleted by casualties, held out with the assistance of Papuan porters and medical assistants, and were relieved in late August by regular troops from the Second Australian Imperial Force, returning from action in the Mediterranean Theatre. In early September 1942 Japanese marines attacked a strategic Royal Australian Air Force base at Milne Bay, near the eastern tip of Papua. They were beaten back by the Australian Army, and the Battle of Milne Bay is remembered as the first outright defeat of Japanese land forces during World War II.[10] The offensives in Papua and New Guinea
New Guinea
of 1943–44 were the single largest series of connected operations ever mounted by the Australian armed forces.[11] The Supreme Commander of operations was the United States General Douglas Macarthur, with Australian General Thomas Blamey
Thomas Blamey
taking a direct role in planning, and operations being essentially directed by staff at New Guinea
New Guinea
Force headquarters in Port Moresby.[11] Bitter fighting continued in New Guinea
between the largely Australian force and the Japanese 18th Army based in New Guinea
New Guinea
until the Japanese surrender
Japanese surrender
in 1945. Administrative unification with New Guinea[edit] After the war, the Papua and New Guinea
New Guinea
Act 1949 united the Territory of Papua and the Territory of New Guinea
Territory of New Guinea
as the Territory of Papua
Territory of Papua
and New Guinea. However, for the purposes of Australian nationality a distinction was maintained between the two territories.[12] The act provided for a Legislative Council (which was established in 1951), a judicial organization, a public service, and a system of local government.[7] Under Australian Minister for External Territories Andrew Peacock, the territory adopted self-government in 1972 and on 15 September 1975, during the term of the Whitlam Government
Whitlam Government
in Australia, the Territory became the independent nation of Papua New Guinea.[13][14] See also[edit]

List of colonial heads of Papua Hiri Motu History of Papua New Guinea History of Queensland History of Australia


^ As to the Territory of Papua
Territory of Papua
having continued to have a legal existence as a distinct territory, separate and distinct from the Territory of New Guinea, note the following Recital to the Papua New Guinea
Independence Act, 1975 "WHEREAS the Papua and New Guinea
New Guinea
Act 1949 provided for the administration of the Territory of Papua
Territory of Papua
and the Territory of New Guinea
Territory of New Guinea
by Australia
in an administrative union, by the name of the Territory of Papua
Territory of Papua
and New Guinea, whilst maintaining the identity and status of the Territory of New Guinea
Territory of New Guinea
as a Trust Territory and the identity and status of the Territory of Papua
Territory of Papua
as a Possession of the Crown". ^ Commonwealth and Colonial Law by Kenneth Roberts-Wray, London, Stevens, 1966. P. 897 ^ a b Commonwealth and Colonial Law by Kenneth Roberts-Wray, London, Stevens, 1966. P. 132 ^ Commonwealth and Colonial Law by Kenneth Roberts-Wray, London, Stevens, 1966. P. 132 where it is noted that "On March 18, 1902 Letters Patent [S.R.O & S.I. Rev. II, 1096] made for the purposes of section 122 of the Australian Constitution, placed the territory under the Commonwealth of Australia" ^ Papua and New Guinea
New Guinea
Act, 1949 of the Commonwealth of Australia ^ Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea
Act, 1971 of the Commonwealth of Australia ^ a b "Papua New Guinea". State.gov. 2017-02-07. Retrieved 2017-10-02.  ^ "Remembering the war in New Guinea
New Guinea
- Rabaul". Ajrp.awm.gov.au. Retrieved 2017-10-02.  ^ "Kokoda Trail Campaign The Australian War Memorial". Awm.gov.au. 1942-07-21. Retrieved 2017-10-02.  ^ " Battle of Milne Bay
Battle of Milne Bay
The Australian War Memorial". Awm.gov.au. Retrieved 2017-10-02.  ^ a b "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 24 June 2011. Retrieved 14 July 2011.  ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 4 May 2013. Retrieved 1 May 2013.  ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 4 December 2007. Retrieved 14 July 2011.  ^ "In office - Gough Whitlam - Australia's PMs - Australia's Prime Ministers". Primeministers.naa.gov.au. Retrieved 2017-10-02. 

v t e

British Empire

Legend Current territory Former territory * Now a Commonwealth realm Now a member of the Commonwealth of Nations Historical flags of the British Empire


1542–1800 Ireland (integrated into UK) 1708–1757, 1763–1782 and 1798–1802 Minorca Since 1713 Gibraltar 1800–1813 Malta (Protectorate) 1813–1964 Malta (Colony) 1807–1890 Heligoland 1809–1864 Ionian Islands 1878–1960 Cyprus 1921–1937 Irish Free State

North America

17th century and before 18th century 19th and 20th century

1579 New Albion 1583–1907 Newfoundland 1605–1979 *Saint Lucia 1607–1776 Virginia Since 1619 Bermuda 1620–1691 Plymouth 1623–1883 Saint Kitts 1624–1966 *Barbados 1625–1650 Saint Croix 1627–1979 *Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 1628–1883 Nevis 1629–1691 Massachusetts Bay 1632–1776 Maryland since 1632 Montserrat 1632–1860 Antigua 1635–1644 Saybrook 1636–1776 Connecticut 1636–1776 Rhode Island 1637–1662 New Haven

1643–1860 Bay Islands Since 1650 Anguilla 1655–1850 Mosquito Coast 1655–1962 *Jamaica 1663–1712 Carolina 1664–1776 New York 1665–1674 and 1702–1776 New Jersey Since 1666 Virgin Islands Since 1670 Cayman Islands 1670–1973 *Bahamas 1670–1870 Rupert's Land 1671–1816 Leeward Islands 1674–1702 East Jersey 1674–1702 West Jersey 1680–1776 New Hampshire 1681–1776 Pennsylvania 1686–1689 New England 1691–1776 Massachusetts Bay

1701–1776 Delaware 1712–1776 North Carolina 1712–1776 South Carolina 1713–1867 Nova Scotia 1733–1776 Georgia 1754–1820 Cape Breton Island 1762–1974 *Grenada 1763–1978 Dominica 1763–1873 Prince Edward Island 1763–1791 Quebec 1763–1783 East Florida 1763–1783 West Florida 1784–1867 New Brunswick 1791–1841 Lower Canada 1791–1841 Upper Canada Since 1799 Turks and Caicos Islands

1818–1846 Columbia District/Oregon Country1 1833–1960 Windward Islands 1833–1960 Leeward Islands 1841–1867 Canada 1849–1866 Vancouver Island 1853–1863 Queen Charlotte Islands 1858–1866 British Columbia 1859–1870 North-Western Territory 1860–1981 *British Antigua
and Barbuda 1862–1863 Stickeen 1866–1871 British Columbia 1867–1931 * Dominion
of Canada2 1871–1964 Honduras 1882–1983 * Saint Kitts
Saint Kitts
and Nevis 1889–1962 Trinidad and Tobago 1907–1949 Newfoundland3 1958–1962 West Indies Federation

1. Occupied jointly with the United States. 2. In 1931, Canada and other British dominions obtained self-government through the Statute of Westminster. See Name of Canada. 3. Gave up self-rule in 1934, but remained a de jure Dominion until it joined Canada in 1949.

South America

1631–1641 Providence Island 1651–1667 Willoughbyland 1670–1688 Saint Andrew and Providence Islands4 1831–1966 Guiana Since 1833 Falkland Islands5 Since 1908 South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands5

4. Now a department of Colombia. 5. Occupied by Argentina during the Falklands War
Falklands War
of April–June 1982.


17th and 18th centuries 19th century 20th century

Since 1658 Saint Helena14 1792–1961 Sierra Leone 1795–1803 Cape Colony

Since 1815 Ascension Island14 Since 1816 Tristan da Cunha14 1806–1910 Cape of Good Hope 1807–1808 Madeira 1810–1968 Mauritius 1816–1965 The Gambia 1856–1910 Natal 1862–1906 Lagos 1868–1966 Basutoland 1874–1957 Gold Coast 1882–1922 Egypt

1884–1900 Niger Coast 1884–1966 Bechuanaland 1884–1960 Somaliland 1887–1897 Zululand 1890–1962 Uganda 1890–1963 Zanzibar 1891–1964 Nyasaland 1891–1907 Central Africa 1893–1968 Swaziland 1895–1920 East Africa 1899–1956 Sudan

1900–1914 Northern Nigeria 1900–1914 Southern Nigeria 1900–1910 Orange River 1900–1910 Transvaal 1903–1976 Seychelles 1910–1931 South Africa 1914–1960 Nigeria 1915–1931 South-West Africa 1919–1961 Cameroons6 1920–1963 Kenya 1922–1961 Tanganyika6 1923–1965 and 1979–1980 Southern Rhodesia7 1924–1964 Northern Rhodesia

6. League of Nations mandate. 7. Self-governing Southern Rhodesia
Southern Rhodesia
unilaterally declared independence in 1965 (as Rhodesia) and continued as an unrecognised state until the 1979 Lancaster House Agreement. After recognised independence in 1980, Zimbabwe was a member of the Commonwealth until it withdrew in 2003.


17th and 18th century 19th century 20th century

1685–1824 Bencoolen 1702–1705 Pulo Condore 1757–1947 Bengal 1762–1764 Manila and Cavite 1781–1784 and 1795–1819 Padang 1786–1946 Penang 1795–1948 Ceylon 1796–1965 Maldives

1811–1816 Java 1812–1824 Banka and Billiton 1819–1826 Malaya 1824–1948 Burma 1826–1946 Straits Settlements 1839–1967 Aden 1839–1842 Afghanistan 1841–1997 Hong Kong 1841–1946 Sarawak 1848–1946 Labuan 1858–1947 India 1874–1963 Borneo

1879–1919 Afghanistan (protectorate) 1882–1963 North Borneo 1885–1946 Unfederated Malay States 1888–1984 Brunei 1891–1971 Muscat and Oman 1892–1971 Trucial States 1895–1946 Federated Malay States 1898–1930 Weihai 1878–1960 Cyprus

1907–1949 Bhutan (protectorate) 1918–1961 Kuwait 1920–1932 Mesopotamia8 1921–1946 Transjordan8 1923–1948 Palestine8 1945–1946 South Vietnam 1946–1963 North Borneo 1946–1963 Sarawak 1946–1963 Singapore 1946–1948 Malayan Union 1948–1957 Federation of Malaya Since 1960 Akrotiri and Dhekelia
Akrotiri and Dhekelia
(before as part of Cyprus) Since 1965 British Indian Ocean Territory
British Indian Ocean Territory
(before as part of Mauritius and the Seychelles)

8 League of Nations mandate. Iraq's mandate was not enacted and replaced by the Anglo-Iraqi Treaty


18th and 19th centuries 20th century

1788–1901 New South Wales 1803–1901 Van Diemen's Land/Tasmania 1807–1863 Auckland Islands9 1824–1980 New Hebrides 1824–1901 Queensland 1829–1901 Swan River/Western Australia 1836–1901 South Australia since 1838 Pitcairn Islands

1841–1907 New Zealand 1851–1901 Victoria 1874–1970 Fiji10 1877–1976 Western Pacific Territories 1884–1949 Papua 1888–1901 Rarotonga/Cook Islands9 1889–1948 Union Islands9 1892–1979 Gilbert and Ellice Islands11 1893–1978 Solomon Islands12

1900–1970 Tonga 1900–1974 Niue9 1901–1942 *Australia 1907–1947 *New Zealand 1919–1942 and 1945–1968 Nauru 1919–1949 New Guinea 1949–1975 Papua and New Guinea13

9. Now part of the *Realm of New Zealand. 10. Suspended member. 11. Now Kiribati
and *Tuvalu. 12. Now the *Solomon Islands. 13. Now *Papua New Guinea.

Antarctica and South Atlantic

Since 1658 Saint Helena14 Since 1815 Ascension Island14 Since 1816 Tristan da Cunha14 Since 1908 British Antarctic Territory15 1841–1933 Australian Antarctic Territory
Australian Antarctic Territory
(transferred to the Commonwealth of Australia) 1841–1947 Ross Dependency
Ross Dependency
(transferred to the Realm of New Zealand)

14. Since 2009 part of Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha; Ascension Island
Ascension Island
(1922–) and Tristan da Cunha
Tristan da Cunha
(1938–) were previously dependencies of Saint Helena. 15. Both claimed in 1908; territories formed in 1962 (British Antarctic Territory) and 1985 (South Georgia and the South