Pentland was established in the mid-1850s, becoming a critical rail and communication junction of the day in this period. The discovery of gold, then timber and cattle, and subsequently sawmill and meatworks industries assisted in maintaining its early thriving position.

Today the small town, with an estimated population of 250, offers many historical and natural attractions such as the historical Railway Station, Norwood Lockup, Burra Range Lookout and birdlife.

Large coal reserves have previously been identified in this area. With technological advances in the mining industry, there exisit opportunities for coal mining operations.