First Nations people are advised this page includes photos and names of people who have passed away.

The Boonwurrung People have been on Country since time immemorial.

These are some of the Ancestors and Elders who’ve shaped our past and are creating our future. These are stories showing their connection to Country and their commitment to the Law of Bundjil.


Yalukut Wilam Arweet

1815 - 1865

Derrimut was one of two N’arweet’s of the Yalukit Willam. He stood on his Country, Birrarung-ga (Melbourne City) in 1835 when it was invaded by a crew of Ngamadji (white men). Derrimut’s tribesmen were a part of the infamous Treaty of John Batman.


Benbow (BUL-OOT)

Yalukut Wilam Arweet

1810 - 1860

Benbow (Bul-oot) was the other N’arweet of the Yalukit Willam, alongside Derrimut. He was situated on the west side of the Maribyrnong River reaching the Werribee River. While Benbow was associated with John Fawkner and John Batman in his work in the Native Police Corps, throughout his life Benbow worked to defend his people’s right to live on Country.


Louisa Briggs



Louisa Briggs is the Ancestor of all the existing Boonwurrung people today. Louisa was born on the coast near Melbourne around 1835. Louisa was a Boonwurrung matriarch, mother of ten children, and vocal activist. Louisa was the wife of John Briggs, son of Woretemoeteyenner and grandson of Manalargenn. Louisa and John had nine children and one adopted son.


Carolyn Briggs

Boonwurrung N'arweet

Carolyn Briggs, for 50 years, has dedicated her life to supporting individuals and communities with connecting to their heritage through mapping their genealogy, understanding their history and their culture and caring for waterways and Country. She has a lifetime of achievements and awards and continues to spend her life tirelessly promoting our culture and connection to Country, as founder and chair of the Boonwurrung Foundation.


Caroline Martin

Senior Boonwurrung Woman

1968 - Current

Caroline is an experienced Senior Manager and Senior Policy Adviser in a broad range of environments including Arts and Culture, Tourism, Early Childhood, Education, Employment and the Victorian Public Sector. Caroline has also held many committee membership and executive roles on a vast variety of Boards of Management for over 30 years.


Fay Stewart Muir

Boonwurrung Senior Elder

Aunty Fay Stewart Muir is a senior Boon Wurrung and Wamba Wamba Elder, First Nations’ community leader and Koori Court Elder. She is a Boon Wurrung and Wemba Wemba Language Specialist and works as a prison educator in First Nation languages and a creative language revival consultant and collaborator.