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Sporting groups, political groups, churches and schools were often established in these hotels; however, they also hosted plays, musical soirees and readings, until theatres were built.
Walter George Arthur, who petitioned Queen Victoria in 1847 while interned with other Aboriginal Tasmanians on Flinders Island, Newer popular team sports such as cricket and football failed to be sustained in Launceston before the population grew substantially.
Launceston has also been home to several firsts such as the first use of anaesthetic in the Southern Hemisphere, the first Australian city to have underground sewers and the first Australian city to be lit by hydroelectricity.
The first inhabitants of the area of Launceston were largely nomadic Aboriginal Tasmanians believed to have been part of the North Midlands Tribe.
The topography of the area is not conducive to easy dispersion of airborne pollution, due to the phenomenon of thermal inversion.
During recent years the city's air quality has improved.
The council has acquired land used by eighteen businesses on the south side of Lindsay Street in Invermay, with businesses having until July 2009 to leave.
It is used for commercial and recreational shipping and boating.
Initially the settlement was called Patersonia; however, Paterson later changed the name to Launceston in honour of the New South Wales Governor Captain Philip Gidley King, who was born in Launceston, Cornwall.
The name still survives in the tiny hamlet of Patersonia 18 kilometres (11 mi) north-west of Launceston.
Studies indicate that 73% percent of air pollution in Launceston and surrounding areas during the winter period is caused by wood smoke, while about 8% is from motor vehicle pollution.
During the early 1990s about 60% of households used wood heaters, but since the mid 2000s only 25–30% of households use wood heating.