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Unlike many other gold boom towns, the Ballarat fields experienced sustained high gold yields for many decades, which can be evidenced to this day in the city's rich architecture.The city is famous in Australia for the Eureka Rebellion, the only armed rebellion in Australian history.The Yuille family, Scottish settlers Archibald Buchanan Yuille and his brother William Cross Yuille, arrived in 1837 and squatted a 10,000-acre (4,000 ha) sheep run.The first houses were built near Woolshed Creek by William Yuille and Anderson (Sebastopol), while Yuille erected a hut at Black Swamp (Lake Wendouree) in 1838.
Print media played a large role in the early history of the settlement.
Just months after Victoria was granted separation from the state of New South Wales, the Victorian gold rush transformed Ballarat from a small sheep station to a major settlement.
Gold was discovered on 18 August 1851, and news quickly spread of rich alluvial fields where gold could easily be extracted.
Proclaimed a city in 1871, its prosperity continued until late in the 19th century, after which its importance relative to both Melbourne and Geelong rapidly faded with the slowing of gold extraction.
It has endured as a major regional centre hosting the rowing and kayaking events from the 1956 Summer Olympics.
The city earned the nickname "The Golden City" in the 1850s.