Burra is a historic copper town, one of the historic highlights of South Australia. It was declared a State Heritage town in 1994 because it has a wealth of outstanding historic buildings. In more recent times the area around Burra has been used as a setting for films. And the wide grassy plains make it ideal for growing sheep, which made it the Merino Capital of the World.
In the Bald Hills Ranges two shepherds named Thomas Pickett and William Streair discovered copper in 1846. Around the mines several small settlements were founded, at first one settlement per nationality: Hampton (English), Aberdeen (Scottish), Redruth (Cornish), and Llywchwr (Welsh). But soon the towns merged and became Burra, the second largest city in South Australia behind Adelaide. When in 1877 the mine closed, many people lost their jobs and moved away, and Burra became a regional centre for the huge farms in the area. So the story ends were it began, with sheep.