Adaminaby was first settled as the township of Seymour in the 1860s. John Cosgrove and Charles and Henry York were the first settlers and they named one of their large land holdings Adaminaby (properly spelt Adamindumee and possibly meaning 'resting place' or 'place of springs' in the local Aboriginal language). It was later to change its name to Adaminaby to avoid confusion with Seymour in Victoria.   

It wasn't until the discovery of gold at nearby Kiandra in 1859 that people began to move into the area in significant numbers. Being located midway between Cooma and Kiandra, the town became a convenient stopover point for gold prospectors.  Adaminaby was later to achieve fame as being the place where the Snowy Mountains Hydro Electric Scheme was officially launched on 17 October 1949.  

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