Traces of human settlement in the Brinje area date back to ancient times. Evidence of this is the findings from prehistoric times, similar to that found at the site of Humac near Brinje, where every now and then the common mole unearths a dish or bracelet that belonged to the ancient population of the area.
The assumption is that members of the Illyrian tribe of Japodi lived there, and according to certain written records, in the Roman times the place was called Monetium.
The name Brinje was first mentioned back in 1343, and the most acceptable interpretation says that it comes from the Chakavian expression “brnja”, which is name for a medicinal plant that grows in the region.
Grown-ups who were raised on the hard stone of this area know all of its secrets. Incidentally, they are known around the world as one of the best miners and builders of roads and tunnels. It is said that there is no tunnel in the world, where the construction did not involve at least one man from the Brinje area. That is why today, in the middle of Brinje, there stands a bronze miner, by the sculptor Kosta Angelini Radovani. In 1801, stonecutters from Brinje and coastal region created the stone bridge with a sundial in the centre of Brinje across the small Gate-Jaruga stream. During its reconstruction is got a stone ball.
A long time ago in the Brinje valley, you could hear the sound of mill wheels, and to this day, one of them has survived and is still in operation.
Houses built of stone and wood and covered with shingles are characteristic for this region, and are now heritage-protected due to its traditional architecture.
A testament to the long history of engaging in wood processing activities is another monument protected as Croatian cultural heritage object – the stationary traction engine, one of only 10 in Croatia.
Brinje is also proud of its well-known historical figures. From the meritorious in education and pedagogy, to writers and poets, as well as the brave heroes in many wars, historians, and the particularly famous priest Marko Mesić, who liberated Lika from the Ottomans, today his bust is situated at the entrance of the parish church.
The richness of life has been preserved to this day. Successful sports clubs, numerous associations and local clubs, their commitment has contributed to the preservation of heritage and the diversity of life in this area.