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The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders both past and present.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that this website contains images of deceased persons.

Australian Aboriginal Cricketers, 1867

Patrick Dawson

albumen silver photograph on original lithograph title sheet (sheet: 56.5 cm x 46.5 cm, image: 35.3 cm x 26.0 cm)

The 1868 Aboriginal cricket team was the first Australian sporting team to tour internationally. Its members – including Unaarrimin, or Johnny Mullagh (1841–1891), Johnny Cuzens (d. 1871), Murrumgunarriman, or Twopenny (c. 1845–1883) and Jungunjinanuke, or Dick-a-Dick (d. 1870) – had learnt cricket while working as stockmen in western Victoria. In late 1866 cricketer Tom Wills (1835–1880) was employed to prepare them for an exhibition match at the Melbourne Cricket Ground. Wills was replaced as captain-coach in 1867 and Charles Lawrence (1828–1916), a Sydney publican and professional cricketer, found financial backing to take the side to England. They arrived in London in May 1868 and played for a crowd of 20,000 at The Oval before leaving on a six-month tour that typically saw them contest two or three matches a week, their cricketing performances interspersed with displays of spear and boomerang-throwing. The team won fourteen and drew nineteen of the 47 games they played in England. On return, they disbanded.

Patrick Dawson learnt photography while working as a surveyor in Victoria in the 1850s. By 1866 he had studios in Hamilton and Warrnambool and won a medal for the portraits he exhibited in the Melbourne Intercolonial Exhibition that year. Dawson photographed the cricketers individually in his Warrnambool studio and issued the sixteen portraits in this composite picture.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased with funds provided by L Gordon Darling AC CMG 2009

Accession number: 2009.134

Currently not on display

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Related information

The Companion

Permanent collection catalogue

Café and shop

On one level The Companion talks about the most famous and frontline Australians, but on another it tells us about ourselves: who we read, who we watch, who we listen to, who we cheer for, who we aspire to be, and who we'll never forget. The Companion is available to buy online and in the Portrait Gallery Store.

Lady Barkly, 1863 Batchelder & O'Neill
Lady Barkly, 1863 Batchelder & O'Neill
Lady Barkly, 1863 Batchelder & O'Neill
Lady Barkly, 1863 Batchelder & O'Neill

Carte-o-mania!

Previous exhibition, 2018

Drawn from the NPG’s burgeoning collection of cartes de visite, Carte-o-mania! celebrates the wit, style and substance of the pocket-sized portraits that were taken and collected like crazy in post-goldrush Australia.

Andy Thomas, 2002 Montalbetti+Campbell
Andy Thomas, 2002 Montalbetti+Campbell
Andy Thomas, 2002 Montalbetti+Campbell
Andy Thomas, 2002 Montalbetti+Campbell

Uncommon Australians

The vision of Gordon and Marilyn Darling

Previous exhibition, 2015

This exhibition showcases portraits acquired through the generosity of the National Portrait Gallery’s Founding Patrons, L Gordon Darling AC CMG and Marilyn Darling AC.

The National Portrait Gallery
The National Portrait Gallery
The National Portrait Gallery

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The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders both past and present.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that this website contains images of deceased persons.