interesting fact about the discovery of Australia is
that it was only discovered in 1642, as opposed to North
and South America, and some other parts of the world.
Before that nobody wanted it (except the real owners,
the Aborigines). Before 1600, both the Portuguese and
Spanish had sailed past the Australian Coast
acknowledged the others' presence with a wave and went
home. That means that both Portugal and Spain lost the
chance to have an Oceania branch and gave it for free to
a Dutch navigator called Abel Tasman. Tasman spotted an
island south of the main continent and called it
Abelmania, I mean, Tasmania. (There are many jokes about
Tassie, all of them totally unfair!!!!)
the first Englishman to spot the continent
was an ex-pirate called William Dampier, who
almost lost his boat on the reefs of Australia's West
Coast. He landed and all he saw was an arid land with no
fresh water to drink or to re-supply his ship. According
to legend, the heat was cracking his pirate flag on the
top of the mast, and he couldn't see any blonde females
to rejuvenate his tired body, so after meeting some
natives and having a look around to see how he could
make some money, he decided he was in the wrong place
and sailed back to the Indian Ocean. Some records say
that before leaving land he commented to his crew that
he never imagined he would meet such miserable people.
Once again Australia-to-be was left alone.
later in 1768, the intrepid Capitan James Cook found
Australia again. He was sent to Tahiti to study the
transit of Venus in the skies of the South Pacific and
on the way back, sailing at a lower latitude than usual,
he found the land that he thought was mentioned by the
Portuguese and Spanish (now very aimed by both rival
nations). It was New Zealand, not Australia yet.
Continuing his sail west, in 1770, he finally landed on
Terras Australis, or Australia for the intimates.
Some books suggest that when Capitan Cook landed,
he met an Aborigine with a kangaroo at his side.
Cook pointed to the animal and asked its name. The
Aborigine answered kangaroo. On arrival back in
England, he told everybody that in Australia there
lived a big rat that natives called a kangaroo,
which could stand up and jump very well. Many
years later, some people told him that kangaroo in
the local dialect means " I don't understand
Americans were tired of receiving convicts, thieves, and
other bad people from England, and told the
Crown..." No more". England, without a place
to send these criminals, decided that Australia could be
a great place for a no return vacation. By 1787, 750
convicts had entered Australian waters. All arrived well
except the ships; some masts, ropes rudders and anchors
mysteriously disappeared during the trip. By1868, more
than 168,000 convicts arrived in Australia.
With so many skilled hands forced to cut trees and build
houses, things grew really fast and in the blink of an
eye, villages, cities and farms were settled. Sheep were
imported for wool and food, and because there was
nothing else to do, convicts started exploring Australia
and her vast, unknown land known today as the
"outback". The explorers left the coast to
travel into the interior, but they didn't know how
deserted Australia was, so many of these expeditions
finished in tragedy with deaths and lost people,
starving and thirsty under a 50 degree Celsius sun. Some
of them completed the 6000 kilometres journey to the
other side. By 1830, the transportation of convicts was
suspended and substituted by free settlers. Much empty
land was available to anyone who wished to work on it.
These English farmers were very simple people, but
determined to construct a new life in Australia. They
worked really hard to achieve their goals and construct
the Australia future.
1830 on, the most important facts are:
- Lots of Gold
was found in New South Wales and later in the state of
Victoria . Other Gold mines were discovered in many
different towns and places. This attracted people from
all over the world, mostly from China.
- The only battle ever fought on Australian soil
occurred this year. Miners wanted to abolish mining
taxes and faced Australian military. Chinese were
attacked and killed for accepting less money for their
- The first refrigerated ship allowing the exportation
of Australia Sheep, Cattle and perishable products.
Australia became one of the top exporting countries in
the world losing only to United States.
- Australia officially became an independent federation
from England. Devotion, loyalty and friendship with the
commonwealth still goes on.
- Australia entered the great economic depression with
one third of the population unemployed. The other 2/3
lived in semi-poor conditions.
- 1945 -
Australia participated in both world wars. During the
second war, the Japanese attacked it. Big loss of human
life in both wars.
- 1968 -
Operation Populate or Perish attracts 800,000 migrants
from all parts of the world. Changes to the measurement
system introduced the Metric -decimal system and The
Pound was changed into the Australian Dollar.
- Cyclone Tracy hit Darwin on Christmas day flattening
the city. Darwin was totally rebuilt in 3 years.
- Recession hit Australia, with unemployment at its'
highest since 1931.
- 2004 - Smallest
unemployment rate in 20 years (5.6%). A Boom on the
housing market raised prices by up to 80% in less than a
year. Australia joined United States and England to
- Portal Oceania is launched on the web. The party had
many invited guest to celebrate the most boring website
on the net, including some roos as pictured below.
- Julia Gillard became prime minister of Australia after
depose Kevin Rud of the same party.
on the balls, Mate!