Angelina (Tjaruwa) Woods Australian, Pitjantjatjara, 1954-2019

Tjauruwa was born outside the Spinifex Determination Area at Warutjara, the place of Minyma Tjilkamata - the Echidna Woman, near the current community of Jamieson (Manta Maru) within the Ngaanyatjarra Lands. Except for possession of a few pieces of iron, fashioned into implements and tin bowls Tjaruwa lived traditionally until the winter of 1986 when her family group of seven was located in northern Spinifex by a group of Spinifex people making a sortie into country to re-visit important Men’s sites after some 25 years of absence. Tjaruwa came in with a small son on her hip and camped with her family firstly at Yakatunya, 90 kilometres south of Tjuntjuntjara, joined the moving camp which accompanied the construction of a road, 300 kilometres through the length of the Spinifex Lands, before settling permanently at Tjuntjuntjara in 1989. Tjaruwa was adjudged to be about 32 years old in 1986 and was given the birth date 1/7/1954. At this point in time (2014), Tjaruwa’s family remains the last Aboriginal group in the country to make first contact with contemporary Australia.