Sydney is a vibrant city and it has an ancient heartbeat. Discover the rich, vivid history of Sydney from early Aboriginal life through to the modern global city.
HistoryAboriginal historiesPublished 20 October 2017
HistoryHistory of City of Sydney councilPublished 18 September 2020
HistorySymbols of the cityPublished 4 December 2012
HistoryHistory of Sydney Town HallPublished 18 September 2020
HistoryOld Sydney burial groundPublished 25 November 2019
HistoryHistory of Sydney streetsPublished 4 December 2012
Community groupsLocal history groups
Historical walking tours
HistoryBarani/Barrabugu (Yesterday/Tomorrow) walking tourPublished 20 October 2017
HistoryHistory walksPublished 23 April 2018
HistoryRock and Roll Walks of Fame ‘n’ ShamePublished 23 April 2018
- The Barani website provides histories of people, places and events in the local area that are associated with the histories of Sydney's Aboriginal communities.
- The collection showcases the voices of Sydney people past and present.
- An easy-to-search A-Z biographical guide of almost 500 men and women who have represented Sydney's residents.
- Put together as a collaborative not-for-profit venture in digital public history, it's an ever-growing resource you can trust.
History & archive collections
History & archive collectionsMore than 12,000 shelf metres of archives relating to the City of Sydney and its people, places and events.
Library collectionsMembers of the public can take advantage of our extensive archives.
History & archive collectionsWe have lots of rich and interesting online resources to search and explore.
History & archive collectionsWe make an active contribution to original research about the local area.
History & archive collectionsA rich and varied collection that documents and celebrates our civic history.
Download free: Sydney Culture Walks app
City of Sydney News
NewsGold rush: Sydney 2000 Olympic and Paralympic Games 20th anniversariesWhen our city hosted nearly 11,000 athletes from 199 countries.15 September 2020
News6 online jigsaw puzzles using City of Sydney archive photosTake a moment to relax and explore the city from a different perspective.6 May 2020
NewsHidden treasures in free archives websiteThe City’s online records portal includes over 1 million items, with almost half available to download.8 April 2020
NewsStep back in time and see Sydney as it once wasRevisit Sydney’s past at History Week through a series of free events.19 August 2019
NewsIn pictures: the stories behind significant Aboriginal organisations born in RedfernGo behind-the-scenes to learn about important Aboriginal services that began in Redfern.27 June 2019
NewsThe many eras of Dyuralya SquareTrace the history through wetlands, industry and market gardens.21 March 2019
NewsSydney past and present in 13 glorious mapsFrom finding an easy bike route to tracking sharks, maps continue to be popular and important. Find the hidden detail in these representations of Sydney.12 March 2019
NewsA welcome last post for historic digger statueA much-loved World War I digger statue has returned to its home in Glebe’s Harold Park after 60 years.13 November 2018
NewsSydney’s streets and civic spaces bear witness to World War IYou’ll be surprised how many traces can be found in the fabric of our city.9 November 2018
NewsA centenary of women in council 100 years ago, a single piece of legislation paved the way for women to become lawyers, stand for councils and enter parliament.1 November 2018