Shire of Harvey
Prior to European settlement Western Australia’s south west was home to thirteen socio-dialectal groups who shared traditions and a common language with local variations. These groups, known collectively as Nyungar encompassed a triangle from Jurien Bay in the north to Esperance in the southeast (Berndt 1979, Tindale 1974, Tilbrook 1983). Before linguistic boundaries were formed these people were known by Europeans as the Bibbulmun and were said to be ‘the finest group in all West Australia’ (Bates 1938:59-61). The word Bibbulmun means many breasts, a name derived, perhaps, from the great fertility of the region or the number of women and children among the seventy subgroups.