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27 May 2018


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Woodcock was always Timberdick. I got landed with Fingerdick.

In Hagen area the name 'Dos' was an interpretation of 'George' - namely the kiap "George Greathead". 'Dembit' was how the name 'Chambers' was heard. (after the kiap Dalkeith Chambers). "Mick' often became "Mek" as in Mek Foley, and Mek Leahy.

Doing a census out of Watabung in 1954, I came across twins who a previous kiap had named Wiski and Soda

A Gebusi interpreter at Nomad River in the 1960-70s was called APC (A-pee-see) - Australian Petroleum Company.

How many men in the Wahgi Valley were called Akis?

While the kiaps were giving nick names to their comrades, Engans were naming their new born sons with names like - Balus, Bulu (aeroplane), Tela (Taylor), Kiap (patrol officer), Dokosa (Doctor) Misin(Missions), Kakapoe (carrier, servant), Kusa (salt), Skulin (School), Bal (ball), Bali (red skin) etc...

The infant girls were given names like Misis (Expatriate woman), Sol (Salt), Bulim (aeroplane) etc...

A certain individual in the Western District was known as Peter Pan - the boy who never grew up. No names, no pack drill.

This isn't related to PNG except in an obtuse fashion.

At the Bendigo Advertiser in the seventies - a paper run by former Post-Courier managing editor Doug Lockwood - we had a sports journo named Warren Barker.

Not surprisingly he was known to one and all, footballers and netballers alike, as Rabbit Dog!

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