The Richmond River rises from the McPherson Mountain Range, and is joined by tributaries until it reaches the Coral Sea of the South Pacific Ocean at South Ballina. It stretches over a 147 mile course, and its floodpain almost 400 square miles.
The land surrounding the Richmond River was traditionally held by the Bundalung Aboriginies. The river was discovered by Captain Henry John Rous in 1828, and subsequently named it after the Fifth Duke of Richmond. From the 1840s, Richmond River became a well-used trade route for the transportation of Red Cedar logs, but as roads and rail grew in predominance and efficiency, the river became less important as a port in the mid-twentieth century.
In 1846 there was a battle between the native Aborigines and European Colonists, resulting in the Richmond River Massacre, in which approximately 100 natives were killed.
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