Who Was "One Pound Jimmy"? – The Man Who Featured on $2 Australian Coins

15 Feb 2018  Thu

The aboriginal man featured on the Australian $2 coins is very famous. His name is Gwoya Jungarai and was born in 1895 in the Tanami Desert. He survived one of the last massacres of indigenous Australians. It happened in 1928 near the Coniston cattle station in Central Australia. Many of his relatives were killed at that time. It is believed that as many as 110 people were slaughtered.

His image was featured on the reverse of new $2 coins when the $2 notes were removed from circulation. The obverse was designed by Horst Hahne based on a drawing of Jungarai by artist Ainslie Roberts.

Jungaria had a wife and three sons. He was tall and lithe, had a well-developed torso, broad forehead and strong features. He became famous worldwide after Roy Dunstan's 1935 photograph featured on the cover of Walkabout Magazine in 1936 and 1950.

From the middle of last century, he also became the face of tourism campaigns. His image was featured on a postage stamp in 1950. International travellers craved for his autograph as well. Jungarai had to shave his beard so that people couldn’t recognise him. Jungarai trapped dingoes and made and sold boomerangs. He changed One penny for doing artwork or taking up odd jobs. Also known popularly as 'One Pound Jimmy', Jungarai died in March 1965.

Knowledge Base