Series 305 - Papers relating to the Methodist Church in Papua New Guinea and Rev Threlfall’s research on Papua New Guinea

Identity area

Reference code



Papers relating to the Methodist Church in Papua New Guinea and Rev Threlfall’s research on Papua New Guinea


  • 1875 - 1985 (Creation)

Level of description


Extent and medium

1.8 m (9 type 1 boxes)

Context area

Name of creator

(1930 -)

Biographical history

Neville Threlfall was born in Subiaco, Western Australia, on 4 October 1930. Following education by correspondence and a one-teacher school, then at Perth Modern School and the University of Western Australia, he entered the ministry of the Methodist Church in 1951. He served at Gosnells, Gnowangerup, Mount Barker, Moora and the North Midlands, before going as a missionary to Papua New Guinea in 1961. He served in the New Guinea Islands Region of the Methodist Church and then with the United Church of Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands, at Nakanai 1961-1964; Raluana 1964-1967; Kavieng 1968-1970; Matupit 1971; as regional secretary 1972-1975; in charge of literature and publications 1976-1977; as regional secretary again 1978-1980; and finally undertook historical work in 1981-1982, much of which was carried out while a visiting fellow at the Australian National University. Threlfall returned to ministry in Western Australia in 1982, becoming minister at Dalwallinu 1982-1989, and at Northam 1990-1993.

Content and structure area

Scope and content

Documents and research notes relating to the Methodist Church in Papua New Guinea and Reverend Threlfall’s research on Papua New Guinea.

Items 1 - 14 : Methodist Mission Papers: Minutes and reports of New Britain District Synods, 1896 to 1941; including Study Papers presented to the 1932 Synod.
Items 15 - 24 : United Church Papers: Minutes of the New Guinea Islands Regional Synod of the United Church of New Guinea and the Solomon Islands, 1969, 1971-75 and 1979-82.
Items 25 - 40: Early Contacts and Settlements: Including extracts from New Bedford Whalers’ Logs notes from the memoirs of Eduoard Hernsheim, etc.
Items 41 - 78: German New Guinea: Official reports and other documents. Chinese settlers (Cahill, Wu).
Items 79 - 88: World War I. The Expropriation of German Properties (including Pat Hopper’s thesis, 'Kicking out the Hun').
Items 89 - 99: The Australian Mandated Territory, between World Wars 1 and 2.
Items 100 - 119: Extracts from Albert Hahl, 'Governor in New Guinea'. More notes from the between-wars period.
Items 120 - 129: Geological and volcanic history, especially the 1937 and 1941-43 eruptions.
Items 130 - 142: Post-WWII material; in particular land claims and disputes on the Gazelle Peninsula; Gazelle Peninsula/Rabaul. Problems over land & multi-racial Gazelle Peninsula Local Government Council, murder of District Commissioner Jack Emanuel, the trial and notes on the Tolai situation and the establishment of provincial government.
Items 143 - 172: Gazelle Peninsula/Rabaul and the problems over land and the multi-racial council.
Items 173 - 200: Pre World War 2 material: defence arrangements in Rabaul 1939 - 1941, the Japanese invasion in January 1942, personal memoirs, interviews from persons from 1910 - post World War 2.
Items 201 - 225: Chronology of prisoners' movements, civilians and soldiers, the Chinese in Chinatown until 1943.
Items 226 - 278: Methodist and United Church Papers, notes on New Britain/New Ireland from church papers in the PNG Collection, University of Papua New Guinea Library.


System of arrangement

Single number imposed

Conditions of access and use area

Conditions governing access

Researchers must sign an access agreement.

Conditions governing reproduction

Language of material

Script of material

Language and script notes

Physical characteristics and technical requirements

Finding aids

Allied materials area

Existence and location of originals

Existence and location of copies

Related descriptions

Notes area

Alternative identifier(s)

Access points

Subject access points

Place access points

Name access points

Genre access points

Description control area

Description identifier

Institution identifier

Rules and/or conventions used

Dates of creation revision deletion

Prepared by Karina Taylor on 15 April 2009 ; updated by Christine Bryan on 16 June 2015; revised by Phuong Dang on 12 August 2016




Accession area

Related subjects

Related people and organizations

Related genres

Related places