The land of Papua does have many interesting stories and also history. It also happened in West Papua, especially in Wondama Bay Regency. You have to know that the history of Wondama Bay is indeed interesting. Be it in prehistoric, historical, or even in the modern era.
Wondama Bay, which locals call Teluk Wondama, has been one of the regencies in West Papua Province since 2003. Besides its fantastic nature, Wondama Papua also has many other attractive histories. Here are the stories!
Wondama Bay in the Prehistoric Era
Many tribes live in Papua. Up until now, around 255 indigenous tribes have occupied the land of Papua. However, if we are talking about ethnicity in general, almost all of these tribes are Papuan.
But, apart from the native tribes of Wondama, that is, the Papuan, it turns out that there are traces of Austronesian people as well. This was proven after archaeologists found a human fossil with a height of about 3 meters in Wondama Bay.
The characteristics match well with the Austronesian people. It is because they are famous for being tall like giants. So, many people believe that Wondama Bay was the first transit point for Austronesian immigrants.
Traces of the Austronesian ethnicity in the prehistoric period of Wondama Bay still exist today. For example, the tribe of Biak and the tribe of Waropen. Mostly, they live on the coast, while most Papuans live in the mountains.
Trace of Christianity in Wondama Bay during Colonialism Era
If we are talking about colonialism, then the Gospel is definitely one of them. This also applies to Wondama Bay, one of the centers for the evangelism of Christianity in West Papua. It happened especially during Dutch colonialism.
In fact, the history of evangelism in Wondama Bay is interesting. Because here you can find the trace of an old bible. It is still written in a foreign language, while most bibles people find in Papua are already in Indonesian. The age of the Bible is roughly 200 years old.
The citizens found the Bible at the home of Rudolf Beyer. He was a missionary assigned to carry out the Gospel mission in Wondama Bay. However, in the early years, most citizens refused to accept the concept of God and Christianity.
This was fatal because Beyer’s wife became the victim. The grave of Bayer’s wife is one of the traces of Christianity in Wondama Bay. Aside from that, there are The Stone of Inspiration and The Stone of Civilization in Wasior. Also, there is an old church and Bible on the island of Roon.
The Stabilisation of Wondama Bay Regency
As you already know, Wondama Bay has only existed since 2003. Before that, the Wondama Bay area was part of the Manokwari Regency. However, according to the law, the regency of Manokwari split into three different regencies.
For now, the regency of Manokwari is divided into Manokwari, Wondama Bay, and Bintuni Bay Regency. There is around 14,953,800 km2 area that belongs to Wondama Bay. One of the interesting facts is that the water area is wider than the land area.
Although it was established in 2003, the first general election in Wondama Bay was only held from 2004 to 2005. During that period, Drs. Alberth H. Torey is the one who leads the citizens of Wondama Bay as an official Regent.
So, those are the history of Wondama Bay, from prehistoric to the modern era. Originally, Wondama Bay was part of Manokwari, at least until 2003. But before that, the civilization of the Wondama people already existed. The land of Wondama Bay has existed since colonialism, even from prehistoric times.
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