In 1818 Charles Throsby, Hamilton Hume, James Meehan and William Kearns set out to find the route, a task accomplished that same year by Throsby and Kearns.The 1820s saw further exploration in the Canberra area associated with the construction of a road from Sydney to the Goulburn plains, supervised by Throsby and his overseer, Joseph Wild.The area formed the traditional lands associated with the Ngambri People and several other linguistic groups, an association known through both early European settler accounts and the oral histories of the peoples themselves.
Canberra was built to accommodate the government, while the surrounding area was developed to support the city, including the construction of dams, the establishment of plantation forests and the creation of protected areas.
On average, the population of Canberra increased by more than 50% every five years between 19 as the development of the capital became more concerted, and new residential land was released through the creation of new town centres in the 1960s and 1970s.
In 1949, the territory gained its first representative in the Parliament, although at first with limited speaking and voting rights.
In 1908, the region was selected as the site of the nation's future capital city.
In 1909, New South Wales formally ceded to the federal government the territory and additional land at Jervis Bay for the establishment of a sea port for the capital.