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Fremantle Prison presents,

History of Indigenous Incarceration at Fremantle Prison

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Date & time

13th of May 2017 at 10:15am
until 11:15am



Fremantle Prison 
1 The Terrace   
WA 6160
  • Fremantle


Uncover the legacy of indigenous incarceration at ‘Walyalup’, a story of sadness and survival.

Join Fremantle Prison’s experienced Tour Guides and learn about the confronting history of indigenous incarceration in Fremantle and Western Australia.


Aboriginal people have been incarcerated in Western Australian prisons since the early days of the colony, first appearing at Fremantle Prison in 1858 when the convict and colonial prison systems were merged. By 1954, the number of Aboriginal prisoners had increased significantly, with men, women and children incarcerated in great numbers. This was in part due to a legacy of discriminatory legislation that resulted in differential treatment for Aboriginal people. 


Life inside the Prison was difficult for many, but for indigenous inmates, there were often additional challenges; poor literacy levels, language difficulties, loneliness and isolation from family and community. However, there was also a strong tradition of singing and story-telling, as well as art, and in this way ties to culture and community continued, even behind bars. This legacy can be seen today within the Prison’s walls.

  • Gold coin donation
    • Adult
  • Booking essential - 9336 9205 or
    • Baby change
    • Disabled toilets
    • Parking
    • Toilets