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Travel Guide 2   >   Australia   >   History

   
 

Australian History


The first humans are believed to have arrived in Australia over 40,000 years ago. These people arrived via land-bridges and/or sea crossings from Southeast Asia, and became the indigenous people known as "aborigines". An additional and distinct group of early settlers, ethnically Melanesian, settled in the Torres Strait Islands (the Strait between Australia and Papua New Guinea) and the far North of Queensland.

Replica of James Cook's ship, HMB Endeavour, in Cooktown Harbour, 1988 Europeans first began to reach the area at the aroud the beginning of the 17th century. The first undisputed sighting of the Australian mainland was by the Dutch sea captain, William Janszoon in 1606. The Dutch are known to have chartered the western and northern shorelines of the continent during the 17th century, but made no attempt at settlement of what they called at the time "New Holland". In 1770, British navigator, James Cook mapped parts of the East coast of Australia: the region today known as New South Wales. Cook claimed the area for Great Britain.

The first British colony was established in New South Wales on January 26th, a day that is now remembered as "Australia Day". The British formerly claimed the western portions of Australia in 1859, and during the 19th century a whole series of separate British colonies were established around the continent. Much of this British colonization was based upon the transportation of convicts to penal colonies, and it was only in 1848 that the transportation of convicts to New South Wales stopped.

The arrival of Europeans had a drastic effect on the indigenous aboriginal population. This fell dramaticly from a high of 350,000 due to the infectious diseases, forced resettlements, and other factors. Indeed, although the issues remain highly controversial and disputed, some historians have characterized the events of the period as genocide.

In 1850s, the European population increased further thanks to a gold rush, and between 1855 and 1890, each of the six British colonies was separately granted responsible government - while the the colonies were autonomous in their internal affairs, they Britain retained control of foreign affairs and defense. In 1901, the six colonies were united in a federation known as the Commonwealth of Australia.

Australia participated in both World War I and World War II as part of the British Empire. To many Australians the events of the world wars, especially the Gallipoli campaign in World War I, and the Kokoda Track Campaign in World War II, were important milestones in Australia's path to independent nationhood.

Legally, Australia first moved towards independence from Britain with the Statue of Westminister in 1931 (although Australia did not ratify it until 1942, but then back dated its effect to 1939), which granted effective independence in most matters. Australia however did retain some constitutional ties with Britain for another 40 years, these only finally be severed with the passing of the Australia Act in 1986. It should be noted that the British Queen Elizabeth II is also Queen of Australia, and a 1999 national referendum rejected becoming a republic.

Here are some books about the history of Australia:


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Books about Australian History


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History of Australia: A Captivating Guide to Australian History, Starting from the Aborigines Through the Dutch East India Company, James Cook, and World War II to the Present

By Captivating History

Captivating History
Released: April 2nd, 2022
Paperback (128 pages)

History of Australia: A Captivating Guide to Australian History, Starting from the Aborigines Through the Dutch East India Company, James Cook, and World War II to the Present
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History of Australia: A Captivating Guide to Australian History, Starting from the Aborigines Through the Dutch East India Company, James Cook, and World War II to the Present
  • Manufacturer: Captivating History
  • ISBN: 1637166095
  • EAN: 9781637166093
Details:
  • Paperback
  • Number of Pages: 128
  • Author: Captivating History
  • Publication Date: April 2nd, 2022
  • Release Date: April 2nd, 2022
Physical Description:
  • Size: 9.0 Inches by 6.0 Inches by 0.29 Inches
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Australia: History of Australia: Discover the major events that shaped the history of Australia

By James Walker

Independently Published
Released: September 13th, 2018
Paperback (184 pages)

Australia: History of Australia: Discover the major events that shaped the history of Australia
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Australia: History of Australia: Discover the major events that shaped the history of Australia
  • Manufacturer: Independently published
  • Brand: Independently Published
  • ISBN: 1720287872
  • EAN: 9781720287872
Details:
  • Paperback
  • Number of Pages: 184
  • Author: James Walker
  • Publication Date: September 13th, 2018
  • Release Date: September 13th, 2018
Physical Description:
  • Size: 9.0 Inches by 6.0 Inches by 0.46 Inches
  • Weight: 0.62 Pounds
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The Original Australians: Story of the Aboriginal People

By Josephine Flood

Allen & Unwin
Released: October 1st, 2019
Paperback (432 pages)

The Original Australians: Story of the Aboriginal People
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The Original Australians: Story of the Aboriginal People
  • Manufacturer: Allen & Unwin
  • Brand: Allen & Unwin
  • ISBN: 1760527076
  • EAN: 9781760527075
  • PartNumber: 9781760527075
Details:
  • Paperback
  • Edition: Second edition
  • Number of Pages: 432
  • Author: Josephine Flood
  • Publication Date: October 1st, 2019
  • Release Date: October 1st, 2019
Physical Description:
  • Size: 9.25 Inches by 6.0 Inches by 1.3 Inches
  • Weight: 1.45 Pounds
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The Kokoda Campaign 1942: Myth and Reality (Australian Army History Series)

By Peter Williams

Cambridge University Press
Released: April 23rd, 2012
Hardcover (324 pages)

The Kokoda Campaign 1942: Myth and Reality (Australian Army History Series)
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The Kokoda Campaign 1942: Myth and Reality (Australian Army History Series)
  • Manufacturer: Cambridge University Press
  • Brand: Cambridge University Press
  • ISBN: 1107015944
  • EAN: 9781107015944
  • PartNumber: 30 b/w illus. 8 colour illus. 10 maps
Details:
  • Hardcover
  • Format: Illustrated
  • Edition: Illustrated
  • Number of Pages: 324
  • Author: Peter Williams
  • Publication Date: April 23rd, 2012
  • Release Date: April 23rd, 2012
Physical Description:
  • Size: 9.0 Inches by 6.0 Inches by 0.88 Inches
  • Weight: 1.653466965 Pounds
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  • Used Book in Good Condition
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A Concise History of Australia (Cambridge Concise Histories)

By Stuart Macintyre

Cambridge University Press
Released: January 14th, 2021
Paperback (420 pages)

A Concise History of Australia (Cambridge Concise Histories)
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A Concise History of Australia (Cambridge Concise Histories)
  • Manufacturer: Cambridge University Press
  • Brand: Cambridge University Press
  • ISBN: 1108728480
  • EAN: 9781108728485
Details:
  • Paperback
  • Edition: 5
  • Number of Pages: 420
  • Author: Stuart Macintyre
  • Publication Date: January 14th, 2021
  • Release Date: January 14th, 2021
Physical Description:
  • Size: 8.5 Inches by 5.5 Inches by 0.75 Inches
  • Weight: 1.1353806493 Pounds
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Australia 1942: In the Shadow of War (Australian Army History)

Cambridge University Press
Released: January 31st, 2013
Hardcover (276 pages)

Australia 1942: In the Shadow of War (Australian Army History)
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Australia 1942: In the Shadow of War (Australian Army History)
  • Manufacturer: Cambridge University Press
  • Brand: Cambridge University Press
  • ISBN: 110703227X
  • EAN: 9781107032279
  • PartNumber: 37 b/w illus. 10 maps
Details:
  • Hardcover
  • Format: Illustrated
  • Edition: Illustrated
  • Number of Pages: 276
  • Publication Date: January 31st, 2013
  • Release Date: January 31st, 2013
Physical Description:
  • Size: 9.0 Inches by 6.0 Inches by 0.75 Inches
  • Weight: 1.2566348934 Pounds
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  • Used Book in Good Condition
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Australia: A Cultural History (Third Edition) (Australian History)

By John Rickard

Monash University Publishing
Released: December 1st, 2017
Paperback (320 pages)

Australia: A Cultural History (Third Edition) (Australian History)
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Australia: A Cultural History (Third Edition) (Australian History)
  • Manufacturer: Monash University Publishing
  • Brand: Monash University Publishing
  • ISBN: 1921867604
  • EAN: 9781921867606
Details:
  • Paperback
  • Edition: 3
  • Number of Pages: 320
  • Author: John Rickard
  • Publication Date: December 1st, 2017
  • Release Date: December 1st, 2017
Physical Description:
  • Size: 9.25 Inches by 6.0 Inches by 1.0 Inches
  • Weight: 1.10231131 Pounds
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Australian History for Dummies

By Alex McDermott

Wiley
Released: May 16th, 2011
Paperback (448 pages)

Australian History for Dummies
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Australian History for Dummies
  • Manufacturer: For Dummies
  • Brand: Wiley
  • ISBN: 1742169996
  • EAN: 9781742169996
  • PartNumber: Illustrations, maps
Details:
  • Paperback
  • Edition: 1
  • Number of Pages: 448
  • Author: Alex McDermott
  • Publication Date: May 16th, 2011
  • Release Date: May 16th, 2011
Physical Description:
  • Size: 9.25 Inches by 7.5 Inches by 1.25 Inches
  • Weight: 1.6 Pounds
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Aboriginal Australians: A History Since 1788

By Richard Broome

Allen & Unwin
Released: May 1st, 2010
Paperback (336 pages)

Aboriginal Australians: A History Since 1788
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Aboriginal Australians: A History Since 1788
  • Manufacturer: Allen & Unwin
  • Brand: Allen & Unwin
  • ISBN: 1742370519
  • EAN: 9781742370514
  • PartNumber: 9781742370514
Details:
  • Paperback
  • Edition: Fourth Edition, Fourth edition
  • Number of Pages: 336
  • Author: Richard Broome
  • Publication Date: May 1st, 2010
  • Release Date: May 1st, 2010
Physical Description:
  • Size: 9.5 Inches by 6.0 Inches by 1.1 Inches
  • Weight: 1.67992243644 Pounds
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Australians: Origins to Eureka (1) (Australians / Thomas Keneally (Paperback))

By Thomas Keneally

Allen & Unwin
Released: October 1st, 2011
Paperback (628 pages)

Australians: Origins to Eureka (1) (Australians / Thomas Keneally (Paperback))
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Australians: Origins to Eureka (1) (Australians / Thomas Keneally (Paperback))
  • Manufacturer: Allen & Unwin
  • Brand: Allen & Unwin
  • ISBNs: 9781742374505, 1742374506
  • EAN: 9781742374505
  • PartNumber: illustrations
Details:
  • Paperback
  • Number of Pages: 628
  • Author: Thomas Keneally
  • Publication Date: October 1st, 2011
  • Release Date: October 1st, 2011
Physical Description:
  • Size: 9.5 Inches by 6.5 Inches by 1.6 Inches
  • Weight: 3.0 Pounds
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