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New Guinea

New Guinea Collection

History Archive - New Guinea Collection

New Guinea or Papua is the second largest island in the world, lies 80 miles northeast of Queensland, Australia, at the southwest of the Pacific Ocean. Its length is 1490 miles, its greatest breadth 410, its estimated area over 312,000 square miles. Its population in the early 1900s is estimated as 560,000.

It was first discovered for Europeans by Abreu of Portugal in 1501, and has been visited repeatedly ever since. Naturalists were the first to explore the interior, Wallace being the pioneer in 1858, and doing world-famous work. Missionaries came next, and five Protestant and Roman Catholic societies are in the field.

The Dutch were the first to colonize (1827), the Germans proclaimed a protectorate in 1884, and Great Britain, inspired by anxious Australia, made annexations in 1885. Dutch New Guinea is the part of the island west of 141° E. long, and covers 151,789 square miles, and perhaps has 200,000 native inhabitants. German New Guinea or Kaiser Wilhelm's Land is the northern half of the eastern region, containing 70,000 square miles and having 15,232 natives.

British New Guinea or the Territory of Papua consisted of the southeastern portion of the island, with an area of 90,540 square miles and a population of 350,000 natives. The Australian commonwealth took control in 1901. The Dutch have done little for their territory; but the Germans are developing theirs through a company, though the imperial government administers public affairs; and the Australians have reduced many districts of the Territory of Papua to order and made tribes in large areas settle down to industry.

New Guinea is irregular in shape, consisting of a broad center from which a narrow peninsula runs southeastward and another to the northwest. The coasts are mostly lofty, but parts of the western shore are marshy flats covered with dense forests. The outline is broken by many indentations, but good harbors are rare. Mountain-ranges traverse the island, Mt. Owen Stanley in the southeast rising 13,205 feet, while in the northwest there are heights of over 20,000 feet, covered with perpetual snow, and active volcanoes.

There are four or five large rivers. The animals, except a native pig and native mice, are marsupials and monotremes. Birds abound in amazing profusion and variety. The forests are filled with enormous trees, including the camphor. Bananas, cocoanuts, maize, rice, sago, sugarcane and yams are cultivated. The chief exports are coffee, copra, gold, pearls and pearl-shells, sandalwood and trepang. The bulk of the natives are Papuans, who are not unlike the Negroes of African Guinea, but Malay settlements are numerous on the western coast. The Papuans mainly are at a low stage of culture. Some are fierce and untractable, others friendly in disposition.


The New Student's Reference Work pg. 1325 (1914)

Available Books


Image Name
Type of Man from the Island of Tanna, New Hebrides
Tree House in British New Guinea
Beneath a Banyan Tree, Malekula Island, New Hebrides
Dinner Time at Kwato, British New Guinea
The Reef near Simbo, Solomon Islands
A Kaivakuku, Roro Tribe, Central Division, British New Guinea
Native of British New Guinea, showing the manner of wearing the hair
Native Archer shooting Fish, British Solomon Islands
The Home of the Crocodile, British Solomon Islands
Natives of the New Hebrides having a Drink
The Dubu at Rigo, British New Guinea
A Tapu Virgin, British Solomon Islands
Passing the Reef, Aoba, New Hebrides
Old Cannibal Chief whom the Artist met on the Island of Aoba, New Hebrides
Leaving Santo, a view of the Mountains, New Hebrides
Native of New Georgia wearing Sunshade ; a sort of crownless hat made of grasses it can be worn at any angle
Sketch Map of the South Sea Islands
Large Trading Canoes, British New Guinea
Finishing off a Canoe, British New Guinea
A Memorial Effigy, Malekula, New Hebrides
Off to the Dubu Dance - British New Guinea
Spearing Fish, British New Guinea
Early Morning, Gavutu, Solomon Islands
A Shrine or Tomb of a Chief at Simbo, Solomon Islands
A Trader receiving Cocoa-nuts, Aoba, New Hebrides
Old Ingova's War Canoe House, Rubiana Lagoon, New Georgia, Solomon Islands
Drum Grove at Mele, New Hebrides
The "M'aki" Ground and the Jaws of the sacred Pigs, New Hebrides
Sacred Skull Shrines, British Solomon Islands
Havannah Harbour, Rathmoy, New Hebrides
Ingova's Head-hunters, British Solomon Islands
The Island of Samari, British New Guinea
A Rubiana Native, Solomon Islands
Old Women making Pottery, British New Guinea
Motu Village, Port Moresby, British New Guinea
Searching for small Octopi on the Reef at low tide, Samari, British New Guinea
Old War Canoes, near Malekula, New Hebrides
A Sacred Man, Aoba, New Hebrides
Front Cover
The "Blackbirders" in the Solomon Islands
Solomon Islander playing the "Ivivu" or Flute
Solomon Island Village, near Marau Sound, New Florida
Motu Village from the Sea
A New Guinea Dandy
Portrait of a Solomon Island Cannibal
A Canoe showing the "Totoishu," New Georgia, Solomon Islands
Gold Miners leaving a trading ship, British New Guinea
Ready for the Dubu Dance
Johnnie Pratt with his Ivory Nuts at Simbo, Solomon Islands
A Stormy Day in Rubiana Lagoon, Solomon Islands
The Rapids, Williams River, Island of Eromanga, New Hebrides
The Island of Elevera from the Mission Station, Port Moresby, British New Guinea
Off to Market, British New Guinea
Marine Village, Tupusuli, British New Guinea
A Village in Santo, New Hebrides
The Artist's Guide on Malekula, New Hebrides
In the Pile Dwellings at Hanuabada, Port Moresby British New Guinea
Mount Marion, the active Volcano, Island of Ambryn, New Hebrides
Copra Boys off to the Shore, New Hebrides
Harvest Dance, New Guinea
The Stone "Demits," or the Souls, with their attendant wooden figures, Malekula Island, New Hebrides
On the Fringe of a primaeval Forest, Solomon Islands
A Lagoon in New Florida, Solomon Islands
Solomon Island Boy climbing after green cocoa-nuts, near Gavutu, New Florida
Title Page
By Reef and Palm
Woman with Baby in bag. Fairfax Island, British New Guinea
A Yam Shed on the Island of Tierra Espiritu Santo, New Hebrides
Cooking the Meal, British New Guinea
Chief's House, Ambryn, New Hebrides
Tattooing, British New Guinea


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