History of Western Australia

The human history of Western Australia commenced between 40,000 and 60,000 years ago with the arrival of Indigenous Australians on the north-west coast. The first inhabitants expanded the range of their settlement to the east and south of the continent. The first recorded European contact was in 1616, when Dutch explorer Dirk Hartog landed on the west coast. Although many expeditions visited the coast during the next 200 years, there was no lasting attempt at establishment of a permanent settlement. Most of the explorers of this period concluded that the apparent lack of water and fertile soil made the region unsuitable for colonisation.

In 1826, the first British military outpost was established at King George Sound. This was followed by the establishment of the Swan River Colony in 1829, with townsites at Fremantle and Perth - later to become the state's capital. The harsh conditions faced by the settlers resulted in population growth being minimal until the discovery of gold in the 1880s. Since the gold rush, the population of the state has risen steadily, with substantial growth in the period since World War II.

Western Australia gained the right of self-government in 1890, and joined with the five other states to form the Commonwealth of Australia in 1901. The desire of Western Australians to revert to complete self-governance, separate from the Commonwealth, culminated in 1933 with a successful referendum for secession. The results of the referendum were ignored by the British parliament, however.

Read more about History Of Western AustraliaAboriginal Settlement, Early Visits By Europeans, British Colony, State of Australia

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History Of Western Australia - State of Australia - Major Events Since 1945
1947 Western Australia enters the country's domestic cricket competition, the Sheffield Shield ... Though Western Australia only entered on a probationary basis, it managed to win the shield in its first season. 1949 The worst aircraft accident in Western Australia occurred when the Douglas DC-3 Fitzroy crashed after take-off from Guildford aerodrome, killing all 18 people on board ...

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