Green’s Dictionary of Slang

blackfellows’ act n.

also dog act
[SAusE blackfellow (now derog.), a Native Australian]

(Aus.) a government order that can be used by publicans to discipline or bar drunkards.

Mt Barker Courier (SA) 12 Aug. 3/3: Mrs. Bayliss put her husband under the ‘Blackfellows Act’ at Newtown (N.S.W.) and a solicitor has recovered from the drunkard the cost of compelling him to keep sober.
Colac Herald (Vic.) 20 July 4/1: The drink fiend has a rich field in the nor' west, young and old; male and female to a very large extent are captives of this habit, no distinction of color or nationality [...] Not many-weeks before I left Roebourne the wife of one of the leading townsmen [...] was placed on the prohibitive list, or what is known there as ‘The Blackfellows’ Act’.
[Aus]Advertiser (Adelaide) 1 Sept. 3/5: One of the first things to be attended to is to stop as far as we can the serving of liquor to persons known to be constantly taking too much. Why not put all who have been fined say three times for being drunk under the Blackfellows Act?
[Aus]Eve. Jrnl (Adelaide) 3 Oct. 1/9: Mr. Parsons said Glatz had. been under what was known as the ‘Blackfellows’ Act’ in order that he might be prevented from taking liquor. He had made gallant attempts to resist temptation, but had, fallen a. victim to it.
[Aus]Sport (Adelaide) 18 May 5/3: If the wowser got drunk on spirituous liquors as often as he does on spiritual pride, he would be under the Blackfellows’ Act till the day of his death.
[Aus]Horsham Times (Vic.) 14 Aug. 2/3: To a charge of drunkenness in the main street last Friday, accused pleaded guilty [...] Hamilton desired for his own sake to be placed under what was known as ‘the black fellow’s act,’ i.e., prohibiting him from obtaining liquor in the town.
Narracoorte Herald (SA) 12 May 3/5: She had discussed the matter of her husband’s drinking [...] trying to find a means of preventing hotels serving her husband with drink. She knew of the ‘Blackfellows’ Act,‘ but knew also that it would be useless to have him brought under this because ‘he has, so many hangers-on who will get it for him’.
A.W. Upfield in World’s News (Sydney) 19 Feb. 22/1: You got to understand that once we swore off the drink, we had to take on the cure and stick to it. We’d never been that weak-minded that any Justice could have put us on the Blackfellows’ Act.