O'Connor was first settled in 1948. It was named after Richard Edward O'Connor (1851-1912), who was a judge in the High Court and a founder of the Australian constitution. The street names in O'Connor are named after explorers, Australian flora, legislators and pioneers. The suburb is located in North Canberra, an area bordered by the Black Mountain Reserve and O'Connor Ridge to the south and west, and Mount Ainslie and Mount Majura to the east. The basic structure of O'Connor, with its curvilinear tree-lined streets, wide verges and blocks, was a part of Walter Burley Griffins original vision for the city, which sought to provide a healthy social and physical environment in a garden-like setting.
O'Connor is a wedge-shaped suburb, which is defined by Wattle Street on the north-eastern edge and David Street to the southeast. On the western side O'Connor is defined by Dryandra Street and bushland, O'Connor Ridge to the northwest and Black Mountain Reserve to the south west.
O'Connor Neighbourhood Plan, ACTPLA, 2003