Greenbushes was founded as a mining town in 1888 following a surveyor's discovery of tin in 1886. Greenbushes was named after the bright green bushes that contrasted against the grey eucalyptus trees. The railway from Donnybrook to Bridgetown opened in 1898, with Greenbushes station located approximately six kilometres north of the main townsite. The area surrounding the train station was renamed North Greenbushes to reduce confusion.
The town experienced a period of economic boom until the international price of tin slumped in 1893, which caused the Greenbushes industry to collapse. By 1913, approximately one quarter of Greenbushes' inhabitants were working in the timber industry, which was established shortly after the first mine.
Greenbushes' two major industries are mining, producing tantalite concentrates, lithium minerals, tin metal and kaolin; and timber milling. Agriculture, viticulture, tourism and art galleries are also part of Greenbushes' industry.
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- "Travel: Greenbushes". The Sydney Morning Herald. 8 February 2004. Retrieved 15 January 2008.
- Western Australian Land Information Authority. "History of country town names – G". Retrieved 15 January 2008.
- "Shire of Bridgetown-Greenbushes: Business and Industry". Archived from the original on 14 May 2013. Retrieved 15 January 2008.
- "Greenbushes Lithium Operations". Archived from the original on 2 February 2018. Retrieved 31 December 2013.