The Sydney 2000 Olympics Five Dollar 'Early Settlement' Silver Coin is part of a collection containing 16 pieces. It was struck in sterling silver and were designed to represent both Australia's cultural history and environment. The set comprises of Festival of the Dreaming, Kangaroo, Early Settlement, Great White Shark, Immigrants, Frilled Neck Lizard, Commerce, Emu, Sports and the Arts, Koala, Sydney Harbour, Platypus, Opera House, Echidna, Air and Kookaburra. They are all in a Five Dollar denomination. The set was released in 2000 following the successful Olympic Games from Sydney, Australia.
The early settlement started in Sydney back in January 1788. After America had won her independence, Britain was looking elsewhere as its own prisons were overcrowded. It was James Cooks' discovery of Botany Bay, along with Sir Joseph Banks, that led to the recommendation of the area for settlement. Initially around 850 convicts (Parliament of New South Wales, 2013) arrived in nine prison ships accompanied by two warships. The actual date of the arrival in Sydney Cove, (26th) became 'Australia Day' and is celebrated annually.