About the Site - Gummingurru
Gummingurru, located to the north of Toowoomba in an area known as Cawdor, is one of the few Aboriginal stone arrangements in the Darling Downs area to have survived European settlement.
The stones depict concentric circles, plants, pathways, astrological patterns, and the animal totems of the many tribes who visited the site during the triennial Bunya Nut Feasts. This event took place in the Bunya Mountains, also known as Boobarran Ngummin.
Gummingurru was used principally as the site of a sacred initiation ceremony, which allowed young men to participate in the cultural activities connected with the feasts. Knowledge of the site's full history is incomplete; however its age has been estimated by some researchers at over 4 000 years.
The first European settler in that locality was James Benjamin Jinks; his great-great-grandson Ben Gilbert inherited the land in 1948, and first reported the stone arrangements in 1960. Although the majority of Gummingurru's traditional custodians were removed from the land in the late nineteenth century, they were able to re-establish contact in 2000 as a result of Ben Gilbert's decision to hand over custody.
The current custodian and caretaker of the land is Brian Tobane, one of the Jarowair tribe to whom the land originally belonged, and the secretary of the Gummingurru Aboriginal Land Trust.
Brian Tobane, or Uncle Brian, now regularly welcomes school visitors to the site for a personal tour.
You can find more out about Gummingurru at their website, which includes school resources and contact details - www.gummingurru.com.au