Australites. Part 1: Aboriginal involvement in their discoveryOPEN ACCESS
Philip A. Clarke
JOURNAL OF ASTRONOMICAL HISTORY AND HERITAGE, 21 (2&3), 115-133 (2018)
“European scholars first believed that australites had been formed either volcanically or through lightning strikes, but they later recognised them as having an extra-terrestrial origin in the form of a meteorite strike. It was believed that since Aboriginal people had carried australites with them as charms, that they may have been trans-ported beyond their natural distribution prior to European settlement.During the historic period australites were often found lying loose on the surface of former Aboriginal campsites. In remote areas Indigenous people gathered these objects for the European trade of gems and museum specimens. A large proportion of the australites in museum collections came directly or indirectly from Aboriginal sources. Due to Indigenous uses of australites, and the later involvement of Aboriginal people in the finding of them, they became popularly known as ̳blackfellow buttons‘.