October 04, 2015

WW1 Veterans

The history of many of our forebears who served in WW1 has never been fully recorded or acknowledged. The Victorian Aboriginal Remembrance Committee would love to hear about these brave men and to tell their stories. If you have anyone in your family who served in WW1 please contact who is currently putting together information on behalf of all Victorians to acknowledge their supreme contribution during that terrible time.

Continue reading "WW1 Veterans " »

March 13, 2013

The Australian Mob


Many of John Franklin and Harriet Tull's descendants who attended the Franklin Reunion on the Saturday afternoon.

SettingUp1.JPG Family trees were put up for the children of John Franklin and Harriet Tull. John Charles Franklin's line was the largest, taking up the length of a whole wall and displaying five generations of family members.

John Franklin - The Facts So Far

Meg.jpg Dr Meg Dillon, (Social Historian) has assembled the efforts of a number of researchers including that collected by a small group of Franklin descendants into a comprehensive document detailing the known and confirmed knowledge of John Franklin. The efforts of this research were presented at the Franklin Reunion over the Labour Day weekend. While this research was extensive it was unable to definitively answer the question of 'Who was John Franklin?" Research will continue in the hope that one day an important document will be uncovered at the Public Records Office or some other repository that will shed important new light on his origins and his connection with the Yea district in the 1840s.

As a member of the research team I would particularly like congratulate the other members of the research team and the quality of their investigations and materials in spite of not receiving any support or assistance from the TCAC. Research such as this provides a priceless asset to all Taungurung people and not just to the Franklin family.

Download file

Update - Stone Secrets

The opportunity for Dr David Chalmers to present his findings was well received at the recent Franklin family reunion with many people hearing about his research and findings for the first time. His research and hypothesis sparked much interest by many of the older ‘Franklins’ who expressed a desire to visit the sites and gain first had experience of the landfall and environment.


Two years ago Bernadette Franklin and Loraine Padgham (as representatives of the Taungurung) were invited to attend the launch of the culmination of six years of research undertaken by Prof. Chalmers at his Strathbogie Ranges property.


Prof. Chalmers had been researching the unusual arrangement of stones on his property and concluded that they could have been established by the Nira Balug people (a clan of the Taungurung) to herd kangaroos up the hill, into a race, where they were trapped and separated for slaughter or breeding. He compared the 'Euroa men' rock drawings found in the Strathbogie Ranges and theorised that the rock drawings could actually depict the local Aboriginal people herding and corralling kangaroos.



Other interesting stone arrangements were shown to the group and speculation was made that one stone arrangement was in fact a calendar made in the shape of a giant bird - possibly Bunjil - with it's beak pointing eastward towards the rising sun. Through cavities in the adjacent caves, sunlight could penetrate and shine on the back wall of the cave accurately depicting the time of the year.



Continue reading "Update - Stone Secrets" »

April 28, 2011

Miromaa Language Program

VACL recently presented a two day workshop to those interested in becoming more familiar with the Miromaa software program designed to assist communities in language reclamation. The word Miromaa means 'saved' in the Awabakal language (near Newcastle) and it aptly describes this software that is currently being accepted internationally by first nations people in their language reclaimation activities.
The Miromaa software provides an opportunity for linguists and others interested in preserving their language to organize, analyse and disseminate language information in a simple logical manner that can easily be understood within a few hours of training. This well designed Australian software enables users to develop good archival practices and the opportunity to incorporate audio, video and images along with the text. Once language materials has been uploaded into the database the database can then be easily manipulated to develop specific worksheets etc.for training purposes.
Further information about the Miromaa program can be obtained from the following website.

Taungurung - A Brief History by Loraine Padgham

The Taungurung (Daung wurrung ) people occupy much of central Victoria. Our country encompasses the area between the upper reaches of the Goulburn River and it’s tributaries north of the Dividing Range. From Kilmore in the west, eastwards to Mount Beauty, Benalla in the north and south to the top of the Great Dividing Range and boundaries with adjoining Aboriginal tribes are respected in accordance with traditional laws. Traditionally, our people lived a hunter/ gatherer existence. The various clan groups migrated on a seasonal basis through their territory dependent upon the seasonal variations of weather and the availability of food.

The Taungurung people are closely affiliated with the neighboring tribes, through language, ceremonies and kinship ties. We are part of an alliance with the five adjoining tribes to form the Kulin Nation. Other members of the Kulin Nation are the Woiwurrung, Boonwurrung, Wathaurung, and Djadjawrung. The Kulin Nation group shared common dreamtime ancestors and creation stories, religious beliefs, economic and social relationships.

Continue reading "Taungurung - A Brief History by Loraine Padgham" »

March 29, 2011

VALE Aunty Irene Lawrey - The passing of a valued Elder

Irene Lawrey.JPG

It was with deep regret that Franklin descendants were informed of the recent sudden passing of Aunty Irene Lawrey. For many years Aunty Irene was an integral part of the family’s search for the history behind the Franklin’s relationship with the Kilmore - Yea region. There was no stone unturned or article unread as Aunty Irene pursued her knowledge about her Aboriginal heritage. Her move to the nursing home at Kilmore in 2010 provided a wonderful location to continue her story. She confided that she was glad to be living in Kilmore as she felt she was ‘home’ as she was on Taungurung country.

Aunty Irene’s quest for her history started as a young girl and was willingly shared amongst many Franklin descendants. Documents, in the form of letters and official correspondence as well as photographs and anecdotes were readily exchanged with other family members to help compile and assemble a true history of the Nira Balug clan of the Taungurung. Sadly, just as family members were in a position to help Aunty Irene document her findings she advised she needed time to regain her health and consequently this project was temporarily placed on hold.

Fortunately many of her files, photographs and notes have been archived but it is her interesting yarns and stories she retained in her memory that will be lost to the rest of the family.

She will be sadly missed by her family and by all those who worked closely with her. It is hoped that her work will be continued by other members of the Franklin family.

September 10, 2008

Working Together

Representatives of the various lines of the Franklin family recently got together to discuss the possible design to be burnt into the Franklin Cloak. With the kind generosity of Chris Padgham's company Solution Support Services, 60 beautiful dark brown possum skins were purchased from New Zealand with the objective of creating a Possum Skin Cloak for the Franklin clan.

With enough pelts to make two cloaks, Aunty Jean and Loraine sewed the pelts together and brought along the unfinished cloaks to inspire the other members of the Franklin clan. Numerous ideas of imagery were put forward to represent the nine sons and three daughters of John Charles Franklin and Harriet Tull. A concept drawing was developed and circulated to all present at the gathering held on Sunday 31st August. A further workshop has been scheduled to settle on the drawing and to start the burning.

Continue reading "Working Together" »

May 24, 2007

Lake Eildon

As the water has gone down over the Years
Lots of SCARRED TREES have been Found all around the Lake


Scar Tree

Scar Tree

Scar Tree

April 16, 2007

Franklin Track

Recently the Shire of Murrundindi set aside an area around the Yea river as a dedicated wetlands region. Through research, members of the Wetlands committee developed numerous information boards which described the various plants and animals located in the area. These plants and animals were then described in terms of use by the local Taungurung people. Colourful posters were dotted around the walk providing background information for visitors to the area. The Franklin Track was officially opened by the Mayor who, in her speech, recognised the local Indigenous people and the Aboriginal family who originally lived in the area -- the Franklins.


Continue reading "Franklin Track" »

February 18, 2007

Taungurung Elders meet Dr Jane Goodall

Recently Dr Jane Goodall visited the Catherdral Ranges, located on Taungurung lands, and participated in a traditional Taungurung Smoking Ceremony conducted by Uncle Roy Patterson.


A Welcome to Country was delivered by respected Elder Irene Lawrey to Dr Goodall, staff and students from the local school communities who were there to study the phascogale, an endangered marsupial carnivore.

Jane Goodall, Irene & Loraine.jpg

L-R Dr Jane Goodall, Irene Lawrey and Loraine Padgham