Former World War II Fort Stone Walls Become House Bricks in Morotai

Arfi Bambani
Residential bricks comes from former World War II fort stone walls in Morotai
Residential bricks comes from former World War II fort stone walls in Morotai - Residents of Joubela Village, Morotai Regency, North Maluku Province, use the stone walls structure of the former Australian army headquarters during World War Two as a substitute for bricks to build their houses.

"The thick and sturdy stone wall structure of the Australian headquarters was broken down by the community to be used as building materials to replace bricks to build houses," archaeologist Karyamantha Surbakti from the Maluku Archaeological Center in Ambon, Monday, December 20, 2021, said as quoted by Antara.

Joubela Village is located on the southern coast of Morotai Island. During World War II, this village became the site of a fairly busy Allied military installation. The Australian base area was separated from Allied settlements and base facilities which tended to be closer to the south coast.

In a study on community-based management of archaeological traces of World War Two in Morotai Regency, North Maluku Province in 2020, Karyamantha found that the buildings of World War Two left only a small amount of structural debris remaining behind the grass.

The Australian Headquarters is like a massive fortress over three meters high, with the wall structure built from a mixture of cement-concrete and natural stone, and around it stand other supporting structures. They have been demolished by the community and the concrete taken to build their homes.

These buildings were still standing firm until the 1970s until they were demolished when Jobela Village was inhabited by local people. One of the structure remains that is still visible is the former toilet hole above the ground.

"The area where Australia's former headquarters is located looks like a fairly large piece of flat land. It currently looks empty and local people use the land to plant rubber trees," he said.

He said, a number of tools and equipment left by the Allies in this area had all been removed, either reused by the community for daily activities or collected by scrap metal collectors. The activities of transporting scrap metal leftover from the Second World War occurred massively in the 1980s, causing Joubela Village to appear clean of historical remains.

"Until now the traces of World War Two that are still visible, are relatively very few. In some locations, you can still find the remains of the Allied objects on the ground, the former buildings, irrigation networks are still visible behind the thick vegetation," said Karyamantha Surbakti.

Tag # archaeology # maluku # world war ii # australia # geopolitics

Latest explore

Top Headlines