Daisy Bates (1859-1951) was an Irish-born, self-taught journalist and anthropologist. Her Adelaide lectures for the Royal Society of South Australia during September 1914 were based on her 15 years living with the ‘natives’ throughout Western Australia. Aided by a map and lantern slides, her talks concentrated on the customs and kinships of the tribes with whom she had lived and tended.
Appointed the first woman Honorary Protector of the Aborigines in 1912, her home was a tent at Eucla. Travelling cross-country by a camel-drawn buggy and thence steamer, her 1914 Adelaide visit was firstly prompted by the Royal Commission into the treatment of Aborigines. During sessions at Parliament House she requested that she might continue her work as Protector of Aborigines in South Australia. She believed that the Aborigines were a dying race but was intent on making their passing easier. She also attended meetings with leading scientists of the Commonwealth organised by the British Association for the Advancement of Science in Adelaide, Sydney and Melbourne. She was highly respected in academic circles but also a popular figure in the press for not only her unusual lifestyle but also commitment to an Edwardian style of dress, gloves, coiffure, hat and veil.