It lies in a wheat-growing country and is at the end of a railway line from Bogan Gate, completed in 1916 with Tottenham Post Office opening on 8 April 1907.
One possible definition of the centre for New South Wales is located 33 km west-north-west of Tottenham.
In 2012, the tiny township was selected as the Most Outstanding Community in New South Wales and the ACT (with a population of 15,000 or less) in a competition organised by the Bank of New South Wales. The town sealed its local airstrip, installed kangaroo-proof fences around the perimeter, and put in night lighting, with half of the costs coming from private donations. Locals had been upset that the Royal Flying Doctor Service had not been able to land there for a medical emergency involving one of the leading members of the local population. The town also successfully searched the world to recruit its own doctor, when the Health Department had said that no suitable doctor could be found. And five locals came forward to form a team of local volunteer ambulance officers, in support of the one full-time paramedic that is provided by the NSW Ambulance Service. Finally, the town constructed a spacious sports centre in a dollar for dollar agreement with the local Shire. All of these projects in the one year contributed to Tottenham's selection as Community of the Year for NSW.