The history of Perth dates back to the Nyungar people who occupied the southwest corner of Western Australia and used the plains and lakes as their hunting grounds of thousands of years. They say that the region held spiritual and physical sustenance for them and they drew much importance from the lakes within the area. Throughout the years many ships passed by, some were shipwrecked with the crew never to be seen again such as the Vergulde Draeck which was on its way to Batavia known today as Jakarta, ran aground with 193 on board but only 75 made it ashore. A rescue boat was sent for but found no survivors. Frederick de Houtman was the first to sail the closest to the coast of WA and his records indicated he got as far as Rottnest Island but didn’t come ashore due to bad weather. Then on the 29th of December 1629 Willem de Vlamingh sailed in naming Rottnest Island and the Swan River was then discovered on his next trip in 1697.
It wasn’t until many years later that Captain James Stirling founded the town called Perth in 1829 along the Swan River which saw hostile encounters with the European settlers and the aboriginal people. The newly arrived settlers were trying to claim land and laws were put in place that if anyone wanted to obtain land they had to go through the governing bodies which then in turn saw many of the original aboriginal people turned away and made to move on. Through this long and drawn out phase of the building of Perth there were events that took place that saw the execution of many aboriginal elders such as Whadjuj tribal chief Midgegooroo as well as the murder of his son Yagan and massacres to eradicate many of the aboriginal people who called this region home. Over the coming years the aboriginal people where pushed out of the Perth colony and retreated to Third Swamp, which seventy years later was gazetted as a public park and now stands as one of Perth’s most visited parks Hyde Park. This was their main campsite for many years to come and when the goldrush days came to Western Australian this area also saw many miners who were making their way to the gold fields. Then with Perth growing with the invasion of miners during the gold rush days, Third Swamp became over ran and the aboriginal people again had to relocate to Lake Gnangara but finally in the 1960’s the laws were changed to include the aboriginal people so they could return to Perth. The camp still remained until the 1980’s and was then turned into a school for Aboriginal children!
The discovery of gold around Perth saw the population grow to incredible amounts with travellers and miners coming from all over the world to stake their claim. With this the town soon grew with many major public works being undertaken and in 1901 Perth was finally recognised as a state of the Commonwealth of Australia. With this saw immigrants come from all around to settle here and as WWII approached the city changed and received new cultures and improvements. Over the years Perth has grown to become the city it is today with skyscrapers, tall grand old buildings dating back to the old days and the boom of mineral mining and tourism which is the main ingredient for this cities success to date. It is a city based around multiculturalism and modern ways, and with many attractions and sites that you can visit you can learn about the importance of the history that Perth has experienced over the past many years.