Portrait of Dick: the brave and gallant native guide by Ludwig Becker
State Library of Victoria


The Burke and Wills expedition passed through the lands of many different tribes and clans on their long journey from Melbourne to the Gulf of Carpentaria and back, Aboriginal people providing food and information to help them on their journey.

Aboriginal man Aaron Paterson tells of his great-great-great grandfather, Kimi, who passed down stories of the red men who charged into their territory without the usual courtesies.

The ‘red men’ were the explorers who had left Melbourne in August 1860 to cross Australia from south to north.

From the grand launch to the expedition’s tragic end, Aboriginal people were barely acknowledged by the explorers yet they were significant players in the unfolding drama.

The Dig Tree web site is presented by The Royal Historical Society of Queensland.

To find out more about visiting the Dig Tree go to Explore Bulloo and Outback Tourism.

The Royal Historical Society of Queensland is trustee for the Dig Tree Reserve supported by Nappa Merrie Station and the Bulloo Shire Council.