According to archaeological findings Kefalonia was inhabited since 10.000 BC. Kefalonia was one of the first places in Greece to be inhabited, as shown by fossil plants, animals, bones, etc. found in Fiskardo and tools dating back to 50,000 BC discovered in Skala and Same (Sami). According to the famous Kefalonian archaeologist and professor Spiros N. Marinatos (1901 – 1974), all the conditions were present in Kefalonia to make it inhabitable. At a time when trade was in its infancy, one of these conditions was that the motherland itself produced everything necessary for survival. Kefalonia was the breadbasket of the other Ionian islands. It also produced olive oil, wine and fruit. Its vast forests provided plenty of timber to build ships and develop trade. During Mycenean times and the age of Homer, the island undoubtedly derived a good part of its wealth from the forest of Ainos. Recent research has proved that the columns in the palace at Knossos were made of Κefalonian Fir! This in turn proves the existence of trade. Moreover, Kefalonia’s geographical position made it a stepping-stone between East and West. The Kefalonian archaeologist and academic P. Kavadias stresses the similarity between the inhabitants of the colony of Fiskardo with peoples from neighbouring Epirus, the Peloponnese and southern Italy (Pelasgian tribes). From the pre-Mycenean and Mycenean tombs in Lakithra we may draw the conclusion that they were a bellicose people; anthropological examination of skulls has revealed that most of them had suffered repeated blows.
It is quite apparent that the whole island was inhabited by the middle of the 11th century BC (organised burial grounds). That was about the time that Kefalos and the name Cephalonia appeared. Around 1300 BC, Achaeans from Arcadia and Trifyllia in the westen Peloponnese began to found colonies farther afield, in Crete, Cyprus and even Sicily. The Achaeans were a people who formerly had lived in Minyan Orchomenus in Thessaly which according to Homer was the most important city in Mycenean Greece. Some of them wound up in Kefalonia, bringing Mycenean civilisation, gods and heroes along with them. Finds from their settlements, the most thriving of which were in Crane, testify to links with the Peloponnese. From the middle of the 11th century up to the middle of the 8th century BC nothing has been found. After that the evidence points to continuous human presence on the island.
In its long history, the island met a lot of conquerors.
During 2nd BC, the Romans conquered Kefalonia and used it as their base against the Greeks.
In 495 BC, the island was ruled by the Byzantines. From 1185 until 1470 the island suffered from constant conquerors. During all those years Kefalonia was dominated by Franks, Normands and suffered the Turkish Dynasty.
In 1500 it was ruled by the Venetians, who were in power for about 300 years.
In 1797, after the signature of Kambo Formio convention, Ionian Islands came under the authority of France.
The residents of Kefalonia along with the residents of the other Ionian Islands tried to accomplish their independence.
In 1800 the “United States of the Ionian Islands”, is the first independent Greek state with its own Constitution and flag. However, many fights as well as insurrections went on something which resulted in the break up of the State of Seven United Islands and then Kefalonia was given to France.
Finally, in May of 1864 after a lot of struggles the Eptanisa were finally united to Greece.