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Albany (Nyungar: Kinjarling) is a port city in the Great Southern region in the Australian state of Western Australia, 418 kilometres (260 mi) southeast of Perth, the state capital. The city centre is at the northern edge of Princess Royal Harbour, which is a part of King George Sound. The central business district is bounded by Mount Clarence to the east and Mount Melville to the west. The city is in the local government area of the City of Albany. It is the oldest colonial settlement in Western Australia, predating Perth and Fremantle by over two years.
The Albany settlement was founded on 26 December 1826, as a military outpost of New South Wales as part of a plan to forestall French ambitions in the region. To that end, on 21 January 1827, the commander of the outpost, Major Edmund Lockyer, formally took possession of the western third of the continent for the British Crown. During the last decade of the 19th century the town served as a gateway to the Eastern Goldfields. For many years, it was the colony's only deep-water port, having a place of eminence on shipping services between Britain and its Australian colonies. The opening of the Fremantle Inner Harbour in 1897, however, saw its importance as a port decline, after which the town's industries turned primarily to agriculture, timber and later, whaling.
Contemporary Albany is the southern terminus for tourism in the region, and the state's South West, which is known for its natural environment and preservation of its heritage.
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