We are the Bpangerang People. For thousands of years, we have belonged to this country.
‘Wangaratta’ is the Bpangerang word for the long neck of the cormorant. ‘Wanga’ meaning long neck, and ‘Ratta’ meaning cormorant. These birds are a common sight on our two beautiful rivers, the Torryong (Ovens) & Poodumbia (King) Rivers. We acknowledge the Traditional Owners of the land and pay respect to their Elders, past and present.
The Bpangerang tribal boundary goes from the Great Dividing Range in the south to Waddi near the Murrumbidgee River in the North. Then from the Baranduda Range (Mt Pilot) in the East to Echuca in the West, especially along the waterways that flow throughout the country.
Waterways are important to the Bpangerang People; they nourish the plants and animals that feed, heal and allow the Bpangerang to build communities. Bpangerang People are river people, with Bpangerang Country having numerous rivers and creeks that flow throughout and provide plentiful resources. The Bullawah Cultural Trail is a fantastic self-guided walk along the Torryong (Ovens) River where you can discover ancient Aboriginal stories, spirituality, culture, food, sculptures and interpretive signage.
"Land is the starting point from where everything in our world began. We don't own the land, the land owns us. We see our bodies as the land and our veins are the rivers that flow through us, nourishing us and sustaining life. We are spiritually connected to the land, like an artery and its tributaries- like the life-giving water that flows through the Ovens River and its tributaries, from the mountains, down across the plains and into the mighty Murray River."- Uncle Sandy Atkinson.
Many spots along the King River flats, especially at Oxley, had significant camp sites and corroboree grounds for the local Aboriginal peoples, some of whom maintained a semi-traditional lifestyle there as late as mid-1880s.
More information on the Bpangerang People can be found on the below links.