The history of the city of The Gold Coast is important to all Australians. After all, it has plenty of some of the most delightful features in the country. The rainforest that borders it on one side is a world heritage listed site. The city has also become one of the premier tourist destinations in the whole country. Therefore, it’s little wonder that questions regarding its history continue to attract further interest.
Indigenous Ownership and European Settlement
What many people fail to realize is that The Gold Coast’s history is incomplete without mentioning indigenous ownership. European settlement, which mostly occurred in the hinterland, happened much later. Examining the history of the city involves discussions on a cultural heritage that’s both unique and quite diverse. In summary, discussing the history of this city revolves around the following:
- Indigenous origins
- Local government
- Personal stories
Prior to the arrival of the European settlers, the Gold Coast region was full of river valleys, mountains and hills, floodplains and freshwater wetlands. The Yugambeh people considered it their home in the pre-European settlement period. They loved the flora and fauna of the area. The nearby sea, land, and rivers also appealed to these indigenous people. The Yugambeh people lived and conducted their affairs as family clans.
Most of the names in and around the Gold Coast came from the Yugambeh people. Once the early European surveyors arrived in the region, they documented and made the names official. Examples of the Yugambeh names that have stuck until today include Coombabah and Nerang. A lot has changed in the region since then. However, what hasn’t changed is the fact that the Gold Coast remains a home to several descendants of the Aborigines.
The first Europeans to arrive here were mostly timber getters. They not only cut but also shipped precious cedar to other emerging cities such as Sydney Brisbane. At the time, Brisbane was mostly known as a convict settlement. In its earlier years, the Gold Coast was quite popular as a place for timber, farms and cattle. Sugar farms, cotton farms, and dairy farms were some of the most common features of the region.
Journalists Name it Gold Coast
It’s normal to find people asking why the area became known as the Gold Coast. The first people to use this name were Brisbane journalists. They named it the Gold Coast mostly because it was the place to go to for land to buy and sell. The post-war period caused a huge interest and boom in the real estate sector. This happened in the 1940s. The name became official on October 23, 1958 when the South Coast Town Council changed its name to the Gold Coast Town Council.
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