Burial rites

Burial sites in rock shelters, middens and camp sites are common in New South Wales and may be marked by stone arrangements, carved trees or other features. Aboriginal people were among the first to cremate their dead and some cremation sites in New South Wales are thought to be over 25,000 years old.

While there are probably many burial sites within the Woollahra Municipality, two are known at Point Piper and Camp Cove. Dr Anita Heiss, of the Wiradjuri Nation, says, "Rose Bay Golf Course covers a burial site which houses the bones of Bungaree and his wife Cora Gooseberry. Workmen in 1919 dug up a box containing Bungaree's obituary from Australia's first newspaper The Sydney Gazette (27 November, 1830), which reported that Bungaree, King of the Broken Bay tribe had died at Garden Island and was 'interred at Rose Bay, beside the remains of his late Queen." (Tim Flannery, The Birth of Sydney)

Burial sites are sacred to Aboriginal people and should not be interfered with. If you come across what you think might be an Aboriginal burial site, do not disturb the area but report it to the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service.