Pooraka was originally a subdivision of section 97 of the Hundred of Yatala, the latter spanning from Grand Junction Road, at Gepps Cross, to a point north of Montague Road. It was originally known as Dry Creek after the local watercourse (Dry Creek), which is now the name of a modern industrial locality west of Pooraka, at the creek's mouth (Dry Creek, South Australia). In 1916, the District Council of Yatala renamed the suburb Pooraka, which was believed to be an indigenous Kaurna word meaning 'dry', however, according to modern expert Robert Amery, the name bears no resemblance to the Kaurna words for 'dry' or 'creek'. The term has been identified as a New South Welsh indigenous name for the turpentine tree, which is not found in South Australia.
Pooraka East Post Office opened on 1 December 1965 and closed in 1986. A railway station on the Northfield railway line (initially known as Abattoirs, but later renamed Pooraka) operated from 1913 until it was closed on 29 May 1987.
- "Search result for 'Pooraka, SUB'". Property Location Browser. Government of South Australia. SA0056423. Retrieved 13 September 2017.
Derivation of Name: Abna meaning dry; Other Details: Originally a private subdivision of Section 97. A request from the South Australian Housing Trust to alter a portion of the suburb to Montague Farm was not approved by the Minister for the Environment & Natural Resources on 10/10/1995. Portion of suburb included in 1998 into the suburb of Mawson Lakes. Portion excluded from the suburb of Cavan and added to the suburb of Pooraka on 14/9/2006.
- Amery, Rob (March 2009), "Chapter 18. Reclaiming through renaming: The reinstatement of Kaurna toponyms in Adelaide and the Adelaide plains" (PDF), in Hercus, Luise; Hodges, Flavia; Simpson, Jane (eds.), The Land is a Map: Placenames of Indigenous Origin in Australia, ANU Press, p. 255-276, ISBN 978-1-921536-57-1, retrieved 11 August 2013,
Pooraka is [a] puzzling case. 'In 1916 the Yatala District Council discarded the name "Dry Creek" as applied to the old post office, in favour of Pooraka, a native word meaning "dry creek'" (Cockburn 1908:56; 1990:63) while Praite and Tolley (1970:148) say it means 'dry waterhole', also found in Endacott (1955:48), a source which draws primarily on Victorian materials. The origins of Pooraka are obscure. It bears no resemblance to documented Kaurna words for 'dry' or 'creek'. Yet it was named at a time before the appearance of books promoting the use of Aboriginal words from anywhere and everywhere. Perhaps it was in fact the original name for the Dry Creek watercourse itself. However, Pooraka does appear in Ingamells (1955) and Reed (1967) with the same spelling, where it is identified as a New South Wales word meaning 'turpentine tree'.
- "Post Office List: Pooraka East Post Office". Premier Postal History. Premier Postal Auctions. Retrieved 13 September 2017.
- "ATDB • View topic - 150th Anniversary of the Stockade (Northfield) Line". www.busaustralia.com. Retrieved 21 September 2017.