Ledermann’s and some other German localities in Papua New Guinea
Flora Malesiana Bulletin , Volume 10 - Issue 1 p. 32- 38
Collecting localities are of special interest to those who want to know the exact origin of the material under study: e.g. when citing types, designating neotypes, preparing distribution maps, planning expeditions, comparing species lists, or because of some historical interest. It is not always easy to gather these data, especially in the case of many former colonies where geographical names as used on collections have been changed (or may never have been recorded by the authorities and include on maps or in official gazetteers). As we have spent some time to gather the present information, we thought a wider audience might be interested. For a brief period, 1884 to 1921, the northern half of Papua New Guinea was a German colony, and the mainland portion known as Kaiser Wilhelmsland. German names were given to villages and other places where the colonists settled, and to the rivers and mountains they ’discovered’. When the Mandated Territory of New Guinea came into existence in 1921, the Australian administration proceeded to change many of these names. Some were merely translated, e.g. Aprilfluss became April River, Felsspitze became Rocky Peak, and Hansemann-Berg (near Madang) became Mt. Hansemann. Others underwent a complete change: Kaiser Wilhelmsland was abandoned in favour of ‘North-East New Guinea’, the mighty Kaiserin Augustafluss reverted to being the Sepik, the English names for Neu-Pommern and Neu-Mecklenburg were restored, the names of famous English politicians replaced those of German philosophers for two peaks in the Finisterre Range, and Friedrich-Wilhelmshafen became Madang after the name of the District Officer’s house which had been moved there from Finschhafen. Fortunately relatively few names were changed after the Independence of Papua New Guinea in 1976.
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Veldkamp, J.F, Vink, W, & Frodin, D.G. (1988). Ledermann’s and some other German localities in Papua New Guinea. Flora Malesiana Bulletin, 10(1), 32–38.