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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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Australian History for Dummies

By Alex McDermott

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

Australian History for Dummies
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Description:
Australian History for Dummies
  • Manufacturer: For Dummies
  • Brand: Wiley
  • ISBN: 1742169996
  • EAN: 9781742169996
  • PartNumber: Illustrated
Details:
  • Paperback
  • Edition: 1
  • Number of Pages: 448
  • Author: Alex McDermott
  • Publication Date: May 16th, 2011
  • Release Date: May 16th, 2011
Physical Description:
  • Size: 8.999982 Inches by 7.299198 Inches by 1.401572 Inches
  • Weight: 1.6314207388 Pounds
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Only in Australia: The History, Politics, and Economics of Australian Exceptionalism

Oxford University Press, USA
Released: August 23rd, 2016
Hardcover (320 pages)

Only in Australia: The History, Politics, and Economics of Australian Exceptionalism
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Only in Australia: The History, Politics, and Economics of Australian Exceptionalism
  • Manufacturer: Oxford University Press
  • Brand: Oxford University Press, USA
  • ISBN: 019875325X
  • EAN: 9780198753254
  • PartNumber: 9780198753254
Details:
  • Hardcover
  • Edition: 1
  • Number of Pages: 320
  • Publication Date: August 23rd, 2016
  • Release Date: August 23rd, 2016
Physical Description:
  • Size: 6.2 Inches by 9.3 Inches by 0.9 Inches
  • Weight: 1.38009376012 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
Features:
  • Used Book in Good Condition
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Convict Maids: The Forced Migration of Women to Australia (Studies in Australian History)

By Deborah Oxley

Cambridge University Press
Released: June 13th, 1997
Multicolor Paperback (352 pages)

Convict Maids: The Forced Migration of Women to Australia (Studies in Australian History)
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Convict Maids: The Forced Migration of Women to Australia (Studies in Australian History)
  • Manufacturer: Cambridge University Press
  • Brand: Cambridge University Press
  • ISBN: 0521446775
  • EAN: 9780521446778
  • PartNumber: 56 b/w illus. 2 maps
Details:
  • Paperback
  • Number of Pages: 352
  • Author: Deborah Oxley
  • Publication Date: June 13th, 1997
  • Release Date: June 13th, 1997
Physical Description:
  • Size: 9.0 Inches by 6.0 Inches by 0.88 Inches
  • Weight: 1.17285923384 Pounds
  • Color: Multicolor
Features:
  • Used Book in Good Condition
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Hunters and Collectors: The Antiquarian Imagination in Australia (Studies in Australian History)

By Tom Griffiths

Cambridge University Press
Released: April 28th, 1997
Paperback (432 pages)

Hunters and Collectors: The Antiquarian Imagination in Australia (Studies in Australian History)
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Hunters and Collectors: The Antiquarian Imagination in Australia (Studies in Australian History)
  • Manufacturer: Cambridge University Press
  • Brand: Cambridge University Press
  • ISBN: 0521483492
  • EAN: 9780521483490
  • PartNumber: Worked examples or Exercises
Details:
  • Paperback
  • Number of Pages: 432
  • Author: Tom Griffiths
  • Publication Date: April 28th, 1997
  • Release Date: April 28th, 1997
Physical Description:
  • Size: 9.0 Inches by 6.0 Inches by 1.08 Inches
  • Weight: 1.3889122506 Pounds
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The Rule of Law in a Penal Colony: Law and Politics in Early New South Wales (Studies in Australian History)

By David Neal

Cambridge University Press
Released: April 30th, 2002
Paperback (280 pages)

The Rule of Law in a Penal Colony: Law and Politics in Early New South Wales (Studies in Australian History)
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The Rule of Law in a Penal Colony: Law and Politics in Early New South Wales (Studies in Australian History)
  • Manufacturer: Cambridge University Press
  • Brand: Cambridge University Press
  • ISBN: 0521522978
  • EAN: 9780521522977
  • PartNumber: bibliog
Details:
  • Paperback
  • Format: Illustrated
  • Number of Pages: 280
  • Author: David Neal
  • Publication Date: April 30th, 2002
  • Release Date: April 30th, 2002
Physical Description:
  • Size: 8.5 Inches by 5.43 Inches by 0.7 Inches
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  • Used Book in Good Condition
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Let’s Learn About AUSTRALIA! - History books for children! Learn about AUSTRALIAN Heritage! Perfect for homeschool or home education!: Kid History: Teaching Children Around The World Book Series!

By Logan Stover

Independently published
Released: July 14th, 2021
Paperback (29 pages)

Let’s Learn About AUSTRALIA! - History books for children! Learn about AUSTRALIAN Heritage! Perfect for homeschool or home education!: Kid History: Teaching Children Around The World Book Series!
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Let’s Learn About AUSTRALIA! - History books for children! Learn about AUSTRALIAN Heritage! Perfect for homeschool or home education!: Kid History: Teaching Children Around The World Book Series!
  • Manufacturer: Independently published
  • EAN: 9798537580560
Details:
  • Paperback
  • Number of Pages: 29
  • Author: Logan Stover
  • Publication Date: July 14th, 2021
  • Release Date: July 14th, 2021
Physical Description:
  • Size: 8.5 Inches by 5.5 Inches by 0.07 Inches
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A Shorter History of Australia: Further Revised & Updated

By Geoffrey Blainey

Random House Australia
Released: October 1st, 2014
Paperback (352 pages)

A Shorter History of Australia: Further Revised & Updated
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A Shorter History of Australia: Further Revised & Updated
  • Manufacturer: Random House Australia
  • Brand: Random House Australia
  • ISBNs: 0857984381, 9780857984388
  • EAN: 9780857984388
  • PartNumber: 9780857984388
Details:
  • Paperback
  • Edition: Revised, Updated
  • Number of Pages: 352
  • Author: Geoffrey Blainey
  • Publication Date: October 1st, 2014
  • Release Date: October 1st, 2014
Physical Description:
  • Size: 8.0 Inches by 5.0 Inches by 1.0 Inches
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The Fatal Shore: The Epic of Australia's Founding

By Robert Hughes

Vintage
Released: February 12th, 1988
Cream Paperback (628 pages)

The Fatal Shore: The Epic of Australia s Founding
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The Fatal Shore: The Epic of Australia's Founding
  • Manufacturer: Vintage
  • Brand: Vintage
  • ISBN: 0394753666
  • EAN: 9780394753669
  • PartNumber: 9780394753669
Details:
  • Paperback
  • Format: Unabridged
  • Edition: 1st Vintage Books ed
  • Number of Pages: 628
  • Author: Robert Hughes
  • Publication Date: February 12th, 1988
  • Release Date: February 12th, 1988
Physical Description:
  • Size: 8.0 Inches by 5.1 Inches by 1.5 Inches
  • Weight: 1.47489253278 Pounds
  • Color: Cream
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  • Robert Hughes, The Fatal Shore: The Epic of Australia's Founding, paperback
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Australian Mythology: Captivating Dreamtime Stories of Indigenous Australians

By Matt Clayton

Independently Published
Released: February 2nd, 2020
Paperback (96 pages)

Australian Mythology: Captivating Dreamtime Stories of Indigenous Australians
Lowest New Price: $13.34*
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Australian Mythology: Captivating Dreamtime Stories of Indigenous Australians
  • Manufacturer: Independently published
  • Brand: Independently Published
  • EAN: 9798608015298
Details:
  • Paperback
  • Number of Pages: 96
  • Author: Matt Clayton
  • Publication Date: February 2nd, 2020
  • Release Date: February 2nd, 2020
Physical Description:
  • Size: 9.0 Inches by 6.0 Inches by 0.24 Inches
  • Weight: 0.34 Pounds
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