3.1 - Woolgoolga Started Here

The name Woolgoolga comes from wiigulga, the Gumbaynggirr word for the Black Apple tree (Planchonella australis). Wiigul is the fruit, eaten cooked or raw by the Gumbaynggirr people.

© M. Fagg, Australian National Botanic Gardens

Black apples - Dee Murphy

Black apples in coolamon
© Dee Murphy

The word was adopted for the Weelgoolga cattle run, and as its homestead was here (where Seaview Tavern stands in 2013), the new village was called Woolgoolga.

The first "l" was sometimes left out, including for gazettal of the village in 1888 as Woogoolga.

Did you know this spelling was not officially corrected until 1966?

The Weelgoolga Run homestead was in the slab hut roofed with bark, and was occupied by 1872. William Toft Pullen, a key player in Woolgoolga's development, purchased the hut site in 1883, and later built a larger home (The Laurels) on the same site.

Charlotte and William Toft Pullen

Pullen family collection (the late Joy Pullen)

"The Laurels"

Wendy Benson collection (reproduced in Neil Yeates, Woolgoolga: The History of a Village Fig.9.22)

Panel 3.1 - Woolgoolga Started Here

Slab hut sketch on the Woolgoolga Started Here panel by David Fayle