Noongar people have lived and travelled through the region for over 40,000 years.
Settlement for farming commenced in the mid 1850's and the Pemberton township came into being with the establishment of the first sawmill in 1913. In the 1970s in recognition of the region’s past and future custodians the Bibbulmun Track was named.
Since this time many people have been drawn to the Southern Forests, including artists such as: Howard Taylor, Guy and Helen Grey-Smith and Tony Windberg. The region has an active arts community participating in the Pemberton Arts Group, Pemberton Photography Club and the Southern Forests Arts Initiatives leading to amazing art experiences including the Understory Art and Nature Trail and the Pemberton Artscape in the main street.