History (Australia)

Where can I find information about Australian history?

Image: Uluru by Walkerssk on Pixabay.

Entry last updated: 13/01/21


Australia has a long history. It was first settled by Aboriginal people thousands of years ago, and then in the late 1700s it was used by Britain as a prison colony for convicts. The discovery of gold inthe1850s and the formation of the Commonwealth in 1901 are other important milestones in Australian history.

General websites

Here are some government and state library websites that have information on Australian history, that includes Aboriginal history.

State Library Victoria

This website has lots of information on Australian topics, including Australian history.

  • Hover over Search & Discover.
  • Look under Explore our collections.
  • Choose Collections by theme.
  • Then go to Australian history, a historical collection about people, places and events
Tips: Some websites have .au, .nz, .uk or other codes in their url. This can tell you which country this website comes from eg .au is from Australia or .nz is from New Zealand. You can check the ‘About Us’ link on the website for more information.

State Library New South Wales

This website has some Australian history topics on its Stories pages.

Tips: We like websites like these because they are from government organisations, so we can trust the information. You can tell these sites by their web address – they have .gov in their address.

National Museum of Australia

The National Museum of Australia has an excellent timeline of Australian history that starts 65,000 years ago and travels up to the 2000s.

  • Hover over Explore.
  • Choose Defining Moments.
  • Then Explore the Timeline.
  • Select the picture tiles for more information.


AIATSIS (Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies) is a government website that covers aboriginal history in Australia.

  • Go to Explore from the top of the page and find History.
  • Select any item from the page. For example go to:
  • Make sure to explore the links on the pages to learn more about your topic.
Tips: Many web pages have links to further information or to other recommended sites. Following these links is a great way to find out more. This searching method is called “pearl growing” because you are picking up pieces of sand to make a beautiful pearl!

EPIC resources

EPIC is a collection of reliable databases covering lots of different topics. It’s put together especially for New Zealand school students and helps to answer questions like this.

Britannica School Middle

You can find articles, images, videos and more on this online encyclopedia which also has three different reading levels.

World History in Context

This website is an excellent resource for history topics as it covers world history from earliest times until the present day. To find out about Australian history follow the steps below.

Tips: To get to the EPIC resources you will need a password from your school librarian first. Or you can chat with one of our AnyQuestions librarians between 1 and 6pm Monday to Friday and they will help you online. Some EPIC databases may also be available through your public library.


Your local public library and school library may have books on Australian history. Here are some titles we found:

SCIS no: 1945304
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