After the founding of the colony of New South Wales in 1788, Australia was divided in the east named New South Wales and in the west named New Holland, under the administration of the colonial government in Sydney. The first European settlement in the area later known as Victoria was established in October 1803 under Lieutenant-
In 1851, the British Government separated the area from New South Wales, proclaiming a new Colony of Victoria. In 1851 gold was discovered near Ballarat, and subsequently at Bendigo. Later discoveries occurred at many sites across Victoria. This triggered one of the largest gold rushes the world has ever seen. The colony grew rapidly in both population and economic power. In ten years the population of Victoria increased sevenfold from 76,000 to 540,000. All sorts of gold records were produced including the "richest shallow alluvial goldfield in the world" and the largest gold nugget.
Immigrants arrived from all over the world to search for gold, especially from Ireland and China. Many Chinese miners worked in Victoria, and their legacy is particularly strong in Bendigo and its environs.
In 1854 at Ballarat there was an armed rebellion against the government of Victoria by miners protesting against mining taxes (the "Eureka Stockade"). This was crushed by British troops, but the discontents prompted colonial authorities to reform the administration (particularly reducing the hated mining licence fees) and extend the franchise. Within a short time, the Imperial Parliament granted Victoria responsible government with the passage of the Colony of Victoria Act 1855. Some of the leaders of the Eureka rebellion went on to became members of the Victorian Parliament.
Floral Emblem of Victoria -
At a meeting of representatives of government and other bodies in 1951, the pink form of the Common Heath, the "Pink Heath", was adopted as the official floral emblem for the state of Victoria in 1958. Victoria was the first Australian state to adopt a floral emblem.
Fauna Emblem of Victoria -
is an endangered possum restricted to small pockets of remaining old growth mountain ash forests in the central highlands of Victoria (Australia) north-
Bird Emblem of Victoria -
is a passerine bird in the Honeyeater family. It is a distinctive and critically endangered subspecies, formerly considered a full species, of the Yellow-
Marine Emblem of Victoria -
is a marine fish related to the seahorse. It is the only member of the genus Phyllopteryx. Adult weedy seadragons are a reddish colour, with yellow and purple markings; they have small leaf-
The first foreign military action by the colony of Victoria was to send troops and a warship to New Zealand as part of the Māori Wars. Troops from New South Wales had previously participated in the Crimean War.
In 1901 Victoria became a state in the Commonwealth of Australia. As a result of the gold rush, Melbourne had by then become the financial centre of Australia and New Zealand. Between 1901 and 1927, Melbourne was the capital of Australia while Canberra was under construction.