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Bragge Collection

Laurie Bragge spent more than 45 years living and working in Papua New Guinea after taking a job with the Australian administration as a Patrol Officer (aka Kiap) in 1961, and during this time he developed a deep appreciation and respect for PNG and the peoples of the Sepik. He spent most of his time in the Sepik area but also in other parts of the country such as the Highlands, Milne Bay and the Gulf Province.

This generous donation has been granted to the University to assist with research into this diverse and fascinating tropical region and the societies that have called it home.

The library component of the Bragge Collection is the personal research library of the donor, Laurie Bragge. It consists of published and unpublished materials, all utilised in the production of his history of the Sepik.

There are over 550 publications covering a range of subjects pertaining to Papua New Guinea and the donor's research interests. The subjects used in the library listing have largely been assigned by the donor and include PNG Pacific & World History, Primitive Art, Religion and Sepik Anthropology. The unpublished materials in the Collection, range in type (eg official reports, personal correspondence, oral history transcripts, photographs) and include Patrol Officer Reports produced by Laurie Bragge whilst he was an Australian government employee to his personal diaries kept over many decades and his photographs. An outstanding feature is the two volumes of transcribed oral histories collected from Sepik elders by Laurie Bragge and the associated index he has created to accompany them. These materials are known to contain a range of sensitive content, therefore they have entered a process of "discovery and description", prior to the Library seeking expert advice on appropriate access conditions.

Hewa bridge builders, Bragge Photo Album BC0587, reproduced with permission of the photographer, Laurie Bragge.