WATCH: Elder tells of Northern Rivers massacres
THE BRUTAL history of massacres of Aboriginal people on the Northern Rivers brought some audience members to tears at a NAIDOC event held on Saturday at Lismore City Hall.
After the documentary Babe in the Reeds was shown, narrator Lois Cook estimated in eight massacres 10,000 aboriginal people were "exterminated" with guns, machetes and arsenic- poisoned flour, from 1854.
Documented killings were at Patches Beach, South Ballina, Whites Beach, Tallows Creek, Wardell, Broadwater, and Black Rock - named after the women and children "forced" over its edge.
Q & A audience members thanked the Nyangbul woman for her 2014 investigation, expressed sadness at the systematic killings, and asked where other massacres may have taken place.
At the end of her talk, Ms Cook called on indigenous people to "return to country" to continue the traditional stories of the land, in existence before the massacres.
"Embody country, embody your history, your songs, your dances," she said.
"Honour your culture because a lot of our history is on paper, but our people have to learn from their elders in a more natural way."
Also on Saturday, three Move It Mob Style dance workshops by Muggera dance company founders Darren Compton and Jacqui Cornforth.
A descendent of Bundjalung, Mr Compton lived in Tweed Heads before moving to Sydney, where Muggera dance is based to regularly perform at places like the Sydney Opera House and Stadium Australia.
What a crazy but exciting few days. First stop @anzstadium to open up the @nrl Indigenous Round. We opened for the @nrl_weststigers V @ssfcrabbitohs with a smoking ceremony, corroboree and performed for the half time show. Next stop was Gympie. We boarded our early 6am flight to head to QLD to teach and perform for the Gympie community's "Well Person Good Health" event. It was a great day teaching all the local children some hip hop moves where they had the chance to get up and perform what we taught them for the whole community. It was so deadly to see them get up with no shame. Our next stop was @suncorpstadium to perform at the @brisbanebroncos V @manlyseaeagles Indigenous round. On Sunday we had another early morning flight back home to Sydney to perform for the @sydneyroosters V @theparraeels Indigenous round game. This ended the week of celebrations for our people and culture and the contribution we have had in the @nrl. To everyone involved we want to say a Big esso (thank you). Now to get ready for another big week. ⚡️⚡️⚡️ #naccho #moveitmobstyle #indigenousround #nrlindigenous #iaha #muggera #mununjali #yuin #yugembeh #goodhealth #culture #indigenous #aboriginal #aboriginaldance #community #nextgeneration #koori #respect #murri #muggeradancers ⚡️⚡️⚡️
The duo showed traditional dance moves to children in the sand circle, also used the previous night for a traditional opening ceremony.
The weaving display attracted the curiosity of Southern Cross University Japanese international students, Tsumino Inaba and Mitsumi Funabasha.
Weaving her cane 'fish' decoration, Ms Inaba said: "this was the first time we have sat with Aboriginal women and it was great".