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Native Life at the Solomons.

The Solomon Islands were visited m 1886 '87 and '88 by Mr Woodfofd, a geologist and naturalist, who gives a very deplorable account of the rapid depopulation now going on—a result entirely due to the quarrelsomeness of the people themselves and their head-hunting propensities, and not to the presence of Europeans, except m so far as the traders supply them with firearms and ammunition. The numerous distinct tribes live m a state of chronic warfare, and as they are now armed with Snider rifles and steel tomahawks they make short work of each other, entire Villages and tribes being sometimes.... mag? ■acred. -This wholesale destruction,aided by infanticide and stimulated by cannibalism, threatens to reduce the islands to desert wildernesses. According to the Germans the population of th«| Bismarck Archipelago is" 280;000, wh%. jbhyat of German New- Guinea is< only j.l(XQ(l|l), although much reliance cannot be placecl on the figures. T^ie natives 'are typical Papuans, hardly distinguishable physical^r. from those of the. western and central portions of New Guinea. < They are by 1 no means irreclaimable' savages, although Jifc is, n puzzle to discover how thefijifluenpqß of progressive civilisation, jCa^n be brought to bear upon them. Their most hopeful characteristic is a disposition to cultivate the soil assiduously, and they keep dogs, pigs and fowls m a state of domestication. They'build excellent canoes of large size, and might achieve a civilisation of their own if they could only be induced to live peaceably together. But there is not much hope of that.—"CEdipus" Melbourne '" Leader." '^ A A ■ •

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http://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/AG18900712.2.18

Bibliographic details

Native Life at the Solomons., Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2465, 12 July 1890

Word Count
260

Native Life at the Solomons. Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2465, 12 July 1890

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