YURANIGH’S GRAVE HISTORIC SITE
Yuranigh’s Grave Historic Site
The Yuranigh Grave and historic site is just off the Mitchell Highway 4km east of Molong. (3km SE of Molong Yuranigh Road, Molong, NSW 2866)
As well as the gravesite there are historic and rare Aboriginal carved trees.
Yuranigh was the famous Aboriginal guide who was employed by the Surveyor-General, Sir Thomas Mitchell to accompany him on his explorations.
One such exhibition started at nearby Boree, near Orange, in 1845 and mapped large areas of inland NSW and Queensland.
Surveyor-General, Sir Thomas Mitchell obtained government authority to fence off the gravesite and he commissioned and paid for a European-style headstone. Yuranigh’s people the Wiradjuri carved five trees at the site.
There are now only four trees and unfortunately, the meanings of the patterns and designs are lost.
> Yuranigh lived from about 1820 to 1850
> Yuranigh was a solitary person respected by both old and new Australian cultures
> he accompanied the Surveyor-General Sir Thomas Mitchell on exploration expeditions across NSW and Queensland
> He guided Mitchell’s expeditions through rugged and sparsely settled areas and through the territories of other Aboriginal tribal groups. (www.aiatsis.gov.au/explore/articles/aboriginal-australia-map)
> In later life Yuranigh worked as a stockman in northern NSW
> Surveyor-General Sir Thomas Mitchell was known by the Molong Aboriginal people as Magy Magy
> Carved trees are now rare in NSW
> The site is unique because it shows both Aboriginal and European burial practices.
> The only known site in Australia where Aboriginal and European burial practices coexist.
> Yuranighs Aboriginal Grave Historic Site is always open but may have to close at times due to poor weather or fire danger.
> Yuranigh’s grave has been listed on the State Heritage Register and is managed by the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service as a Historic Site. Members of the local Wiradjuri community believe that other important Aboriginal people are buried nearby.
> Aboriginal guides – Yuranigh and Piper
John Piper, possibly from Bathurst joined Thomas Mitchell on his third expedition into the interior of Australia commencing from Boree in March 1836. The expedition proceeded to the Lachlan River. Piper proved invaluable acting as interpreter, diplomat, and guide. Yuranigh, a young Wiradjuri man from the Boree district, joined Piper on Mitchell’s expedition in 1845. Mitchell regarded both Piper and Yuranigh as vital members of the party.
When Mitchell learned of Piper’s intention to leave the Party in search of a wife, he was sent back to Bathurst. Yuranigh remained with the expedition until it returned to Sydney in late 1847.
Sir Thomas Mitchell Monument Cairn – Corner of Henry Parks Way and The Escort Way, Boreee NSW Google Map
NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service Bathurst
Ph 02 6332 7640
Contact hours: 8.30am-4.30pm Monday to Friday
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