Prior to the European settlement of Australia, the Benalla region was populated by the Taungurong people people, an Indigenous Australian people. It was first sighted by Europeans during an expedition of Hamilton Hume and William Hovell in 1824, when the area, first named "Swampy" was noted that agricultural settlement. The expedition was followed by that of Major Thomas Mitchell in 1834.Reverend Joseph Docker settled in 1838 creating a pastoral run called Benalta Run, said to be from an Aboriginal word for Musk Duck.
An attack by indigenous people on the camp of sheep herders George and William Faithful became known as the Faithful Massacre; eight settlers were killed in the incident. Following the massacre in 1839 a police station was established and the name of the settlement became Broken River.The Post Office opened on 1 December 1844 originally named Broken River. A bridge was built over the Broken River in 1847 and the following year the town was surveyed. In 1861 it was proclaimed a town.It was proclaimed a city in 1965.
Benalla is situated on a mostly flat floodplain of the Broken River catchment situated directly to the north and west of the Great Dividing Range. Lake Benalla is an artificial lake created in 1973 from the Broken River as an ornamental feature for the centre of the city. Broken river forms a green belt along the north-south spine of the city. There are three major crossings of the river at Benalla. The main street in the Central Business District is Bridge Street East. Another large artificial lake, Lake Mokoan is 7 kilometres to the north east. To the south of the freeway is the heavily forested Reef Hills State Park.
This post is part of the Weekend Reflections meme,
and also part of the Scenic Weekends meme,
and also part of the Sunday Bridges meme.