Kyeema has a rich and colourful history.
The area was mined for alluvial gold for several years until it was abandoned in 1890 due to low yield. A few years later some of the area was cleared for pine plantations before being used as a labour prison reserve. This area at the western end of the park, once known as the Kyeema Prison Camp, was established in 1932. The camp was intended for well-behaved prisoners from Yatala, it held around thirteen prisoners and only two guards, with the prisoners were placed on their honour to behave. The Kyeema Prison Camp closed in the mid 1950's and today there is only a cleared area of land visible to remind us of the Prison Camp's existence.
The Park has a rich history of bushfires also, being entirely burnt out during the 1983 Ash Wednesday bushfires, and partly affected by subsequent fires in 1994 and 2001. The Friends of Kyeema Conservation Park have worked hard over the years revegetating cleared areas of the park. Due to this history, the area provides a wonderful example of the regeneration capacity of South Australia's native vegetation following fire, which you can explore as you follow one of the walking trails.