- Kimberley legend Sam Lovell AM donates personal archive of photographs and memorabilia to the State Library of Western Australia
- Mr Lovell grew up on Moola Bulla station, travelled the length and breadth of the region as a stockman, is now regarded as the father of indigenous tourism in WA and is known as 'Mr Kimberley'
- The archive and a forthcoming video biography will become part of the State Library of Western Australia's Storylines initiative
Well-known Kimberley identity and pioneering tourism operator Sam Lovell AM is to donate his personal archive of photos and memorabilia to the State Library of Western Australia.
The archive, which documents Mr Lovell's extraordinary life and the history of the Kimberley, will be digitised by the State Library of Western Australia as part of its Storylines initiative.
Mr Lovell was taken by authorities as a child from his family in 1936 and sent to the infamous Moola Bulla station and Aboriginal settlement just west of Halls Creek.
He later worked as a boundary rider and stockman for many years and took thousands of photographs and slides with a camera he kept rolled up in his swag. In his travels, he took iconic photos of the region's cattle industry, meat works, mustering camps, the bush and the area's remarkable people and landscape.
In the 1980s, he and wife Rosita helped pioneer indigenous tourism with tours of the Kimberley and other outback destinations.
As well as his personal archive, a video recording of stories from Mr Lovell's early life will be filmed in the coming months at Moola Bulla station.
The video documentation will be made with the help of a $35,000 grant awarded by the Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries to film-maker Sian Darling.
Mr Lovell's many achievements have already been recognised locally and nationally.
He is the patron of the Western Australian Indigenous Tourism Operators Council; and the Kimberley Tourism Association has named an industry award after Mr Lovell and his wife, the Sam and Rosita Lovell Tourism Award.
In 2003, Mr Lovell was recognised in the Australia Day Honours List with the Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for his services as a mentor to indigenous groups and communities in the Kimberley region in developing tourism ventures.
Comments attributed to Parliamentary Secretary to the Premier John Carey MLA representing Culture and the Arts Minister David Templeman:
"Sam Lovell's story is an important story to tell, one of national significance. There wouldn't be many people who know our great Kimberley region and the land, as well as Sam.
"On top of that, he has contributed greatly to establishing the indigenous tourism industry which helps create jobs and boosts the regional economy.
"He's now in his mid-80s and his is a personal story that encompasses the history of the Kimberley in the 20th century.
"I am pleased that the story will be preserved by the State Library for the benefit of future generations of Western Australians.
"Initiatives such as this are part of the McGowan Government's and the department's wider role in helping celebrate Aboriginal culture and preserving its history and traditions."
Minister's office - 6552 5400