Towns in Australia

Exploring Australia, town by town

Wahgunyah VIC


Postcode: 3687

Wahgunyah is a small town in northeastern Victoria, Australia. It is located on the southern bank of the Murray River, across from Corowa, New South Wales. Wahgunyah is approximately 9 km north of Rutherglen and 50 km west of Albury and Wodonga. At the 2001 census, Wahgunyah had a population of 700.

The main factory of Goodman Fielder’s breakfast cereal arm Uncle Tobys is on the outskirts of Wahgunyah.

The land around Wahgunyah was once occupied by the Whroo people, a subgroup of the Bangerang tribe. Charles Sturt explored the Murray River area in 1829-30 and, in 1838, led a droving party with 300 head of cattle through the district, en route to South Australia. It was also in 1838 that the party of John Foord set off from Yass with 1000 head of cattle, in search of fresh grazing land. Consequently, Foord and three business partners took up the 30 000-acre run known as ‘Wahgunyah’ (said to mean ‘big camp’) on the southern side of the river.

Gold was discovered on Foord’s property, to the south of Wahgunyah, in 1858, leading to a major but short-lived goldrush. Initially known as Wahgunyah Rush, this became the town of Rutherglen.

The growing traffic of goods and people soon led to the accretion of a settlement on the northern bank. Foord purchased this land from the NSW government, had it surveyed and laid out in 1859 as North Wahgunyah, later renamed Corowa, although it was the southern settlement that initially prospered.