A new exhibition showcases some of the findings made during excavations in the former Chinese Cemetery.
‘Beneath the Bitumen: Discoveries from the Chinese Cemetery, East Perth’ is a dual language exhibition and part of the Western Australian Heritage Festival, supported by Lotterywest.
Prior to redevelopment of the East Perth site, which has also been used as tennis courts for the East Perth Girls School and Police Department vehicle licensing centre, excavations by archaeologists and forensic anthropologists were carried out in 2020. All the human remains were later reinterred at Karrakatta Cemetery followed by a ceremony conducted by members of the Chinese community to appease the disturbed spirits.
Also uncovered were artefacts including coffins and coffin furniture, fragments of clothing and a large number of buttons. A bracelet and some copper coins, grave goods intended to ensure the comfort of the deceased in the afterlife, were also found.
‘Beneath the Bitumen’ will display a small number of these artefacts, including a remarkably well preserved and extremely rare wool jacket dating from between 1889–99.
There is one last chance to view the exhibition on Sunday 26 June from 2.00 to 4.00 pm.
Access is included with the entry fee to the site. National Trust members visit for free.
Tickets are limited so please book in advance.