|aka: Bigabul, Pikambul, Bigambal, Bigambel, Bee-gum-bul, Bigumble, Pikumbul, Pikumpal, Pikambal, Pikum-bul, Pickum-bul, Pickimbul, Pickumble, Picum-bul, Pikumbil, Begumble, Peekumble, Pickumbil, Picumbill, Preagalgh, Wigal-wollumbul, Wee-n' gul-la-m' bul (Tindale)
Bigambul (AIATSIS), nd (SIL)
Kwiambal / Gujambal
|Area (approx. 26,500 sq. km)|
|Bioregion:||Northern Tablelands and Border Rivers|
|Location:||New South Wales – Queensland border|
|Other geological:||Boobera Lagoon
Kwiambal National Park
The Bigambul people, a group of indigenous people of Australia, are those Australian Aborigines that are united by a common language, strong ties of kinship and survived as skilled hunter–fisher–gatherers in family groups or clans scattered along the Northern Tablelands and Border Rivers regions of New South Wales and Queensland, Australia.
Their traditional territory spreads a 26,500 square kilometres (10,200 sq mi) area east of Nindigully, on the Weir and Moonie rivers, north to Tara; at Talwood; on the Macintyre River from east of Boomi to Texas; at Yetman, Boggabilla, and at Middle Creek.
In the traditional language, the name of this group is derived from the Bigambul word biga or pika which translates in English to yes. The Bigambul are bounded to the south–east by the Ngarabal, the Kamilaroi to the south, the Kooma to the west, the Mandandanji and Kabi to the north, and the Barunggam clan of the Murri to the north–east.
The Bigambul are also known as: Bigabul, Pikambul, Bigambal, Bigambel, Bee-gum-bul, Bigumble, Pikumbul, Pikumpal, Pikambal, Pikum-bul, Pickum-bul, Pickimbul, Pickumble, Picum-bul, Pikumbil, Begumble, Peekumble, Pickumbil, Picumbill, Preagalgh, Wigal-wollumbul, Wee-n' gul-la-m' bul.
The Australian Institute for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies states that the Bigambul language was used by the Bigambul people, with Gambuwal and Kwiambal (or Gujambal) known dialects. However, it is more likely that the Gamilaraay (or Yuwaaliyaay) language was used by those peoples living in southern Bigambul territory.
The Bigambul people actively opposed European colonisation of their territory. From the early 1840s they mounted a 14–year guerrilla campaign to expel the settlers. The Bigambul leadership understood the importance of economics in warfare and they specifically targeted horses and cattle rather than just the settlers themselves. The campaign was initially successful with 17 selections being abandoned in Macintyre region in 1843, of which only 13 were re-occupied when Europeans returned 3 years later. The economic war was so successful that it is recorded that one selection was making a loss of £150 per year until 1849. The tide of the campaign turned in 1848 when the Governor set aside £1000 to form the Native Police and appointed Frederick Walker to command them. Walker took the battle to the Bigambul, attacking them in their camps with his stated objective being their annihilation. By 1851 the economic war was effectively over, land values in the area doubled and the wages paid by settlers to employees were halved. Most of the work done on selections in the area was performed by Aborigines in return for food rations. By 1854 only 100 of the Bigambul people were left alive.
Notable Bigambul people
- Dub Leffler – an animator, illustrator and author
- Chris Sandow – a Rugby league football player
- Tindale, Norman (1974). "Bigambul (QLD)" (online extract). Aboriginal Tribes of Australia. South Australian Museum. Retrieved 21 November 2010.
- Dousset, Laurent (2005). "Bigambul". AusAnthrop Australian Aboriginal tribal database. Retrieved 13 May 2012.
- "Bigambul language (D34) (Qld SH56-01)". Language and Peoples Thesaurus. Australian Institute for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies. 2010. Retrieved 14 May 2012.
- Copeland, Mark (1999). "The Native Police at Callandoon - a blueprint for forced assimmilation?" (PDF). Archived (PDF) from the original on 15 February 2006. Retrieved 27 March 2006.
- "Kwiambal National Park". NSW National Parks & Wildlife Service. Retrieved 14 May 2012.
- "Map of NSW Aboriginal Languages". Aboriginal Languages Research and Resource Centre. New South Wales Department of Aboriginal Affairs. 14 May 2012. Retrieved 14 May 2012.
- Reece, Bob (24 June 2006). "Our killing fields". Eureka Street. Retrieved 14 May 2012.
- "National Native Title Tribunal: Bigambul People Claimant application". Archived from the original on 2 September 2006. Retrieved 26 March 2006.
- "Kindling is for the Fire: New and Established Aboriginal Voices". Sydney Writers Festival. 2011. Retrieved 14 May 2012.
- "Indigenous All Stars team named" (Press release). National Rugby League. 7 December 2011. Retrieved 14 May 2012.
- Bibliography of Bigambul people and language resources, at the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies