Territory Stories

The Centralian advocate Tue 6 Jun 2017



The Centralian advocate Tue 6 Jun 2017


Centralian Advocate; NewspaperNT




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Community newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Alice Springs; Tennant Creek (N.T.) -- Newspapers; Alice Springs (N.T.) -- Newspapers.; Australia, Central -- Newspapers

Publisher name

Nationwide News Pty. Limited

Place of publication

Alice Springs

File type



Copyright. Made available by the publisher under licence.

Copyright owner

Nationwide News Pty. Limited



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TUESDAY JUNE 6 2017 FEATURE 27 V1 - CAVE01Z01MA American men, nothings been written about them. Were bringing out the stories of those who couldnt marry because of the race-based legislation. In Australia, American officials visited the homes of those hoping to emigrate to the US with their partners, to make sure they had more than 50 per cent white heritage, and it wasnt an option for African-American US personnel at all. These are the people who fell through the cracks of those official policies at that time, Karen said. Were not exclusively researching about Aboriginal women or African-American men, but our main focus is along lines of racial injustices that happened. For Tessa Cubillo, finding information about her African-American grandfather is about helping her understand her identity. Her father John was adopted into the Cubillo family in Darwin when he was about four, after his birth mother, Audrey Pearson, travelled up from Perth when he was a youngster. Theres a lot of speculation as to how he came to be adopted, Tessa said. Some say she looked over the fence and seen my grandparents and said hey you want a child? Others say they were on a bus and my grandparents looked at my dad and said oh isnt he cute and she said here, have him. Nobody really knows the circumstances as to how they came together, but thats how life was and I dont know what Audrey would have gone through prior to that. Tessa said finding out who her grandfather was and learning more about his family would enhance her understanding of her identity for both herself and her children. Since coming into the project its more about who are we? Where do we belong? Everybody wants to know where they belong and where they fit in. Im not saying I dont, but its about knowing the other part of our identity and gaining more knowledge of who I am so that my kids know, she said. I want to be able to say to my kids here is your background this is your history. The research is challenging because much oral information has been lost as generations pass and, if families even know the name of the relative, accessing information without proof of relation is difficult. Plus one building in the US containing detailed military archives is known as the burnt archives after a raging fire in the 1970s damaged much of the paperwork. While Karen is diligently researching family links around the world for David and Tessa, she is also looking for other Territorians who believe they may be related to foreign troops stationed here during the war. For more information email karen hughes@swin.edu.au STORY TAMARA HOWIE PHOTOS KATRINA BRIDGEFORD CHILDREN OF WAR Tessa Cubillo with children Alexsandra 9, Tanisha 17, and John 14.

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