Also known as the "Niakuoll" and sometimes erroneously called the "Lawa," the Chaobon are a group of about 14,000 (1984) living in settled wet-rice agricultural villages in central and northern Thailand. "Niakuoll" is their self-name. They are called "Chaobon" by the Thai, meaning "hill people." Extensive contact with the neighboring Thai and Central Thai has resulted in a close resemblance between Chaobon villages and those of these dominant groups, and traditional animistic beliefs have been largely replaced by Buddhism.
Seidenfaden, Erik (1958). The Thai Peoples. Bangkok: Siam Society.