I'm having trouble finding what the first civilization of the Star Wars galaxy.
I don't think that it's the Celestials, because they are more of god-like beings.
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The answer is that it's either Jerrileka who went extinct over a million years BBY, or Celestials (who were known to be active in 1MM BBY period). It's unknown when either of them started, and no mention of more ancient civilizations exist; so neither one can be considered more ancient; it's a tie.
I'm not quite sure what the reason is for dismissing Celestials as an answer is for you?
If it's because you believe them to be in-eligible due to being "too powerful", you have to remember that:
The Ones were not the only Celestials. They were merely the (currently) the most powerful
The Celestials were a race using technology, not pure in-The-Force godlike beings.
From what I saw in Wookieepedia, there was no earlier sentient race mentioned anywhere.
- An ancient aquatic civilization thrived on Jerrilek, but subsequently went extinct within the next million years.
- Centerpoint Station and Sinkhole Station are completed in the Corellian system by Thuruht and other Killik hives under the direction of the Son and Daughter.
- Centerpoint is used to create the Maw as a prison for Abeloth, with Sinkhole Station maintaining the shell of black holes from within.
The next chronologically would be those races who dealt with Celestials, likely starting with Killiks
A number of species were known to have coexisted with this ancient race as far back as 100,000 BBY. These included the Gree, Kwa, Sharu, Columi, Killiks, Humans and Taung.
Races such as the Columi, Gree, Sharu and Kwa all had contact with the Celestials. (sources: The Essential Atlas, Essential Guide to Warfare)
So after heavy research and a look at the galactic history timeline on Wookieepedia.
The Whills/The Force Priestesses are birthed by the Wellspring of Life.
Then Father, Son, Daughter, and possibly Abeloth, though she's not considered canon anymore, are born.
Then, according to "Ultimate Star Wars", The Reptillian Elders start to appear on "Ancient" Naboo.
But that's from a source book, and I prefer in universe storytelling, so ONWWARD!
A Millennia Before the Battle of Yavin:
One or more ancestral species unlock the secrets of hyperspace travel and open the galaxy for exploration.
"Prime Jedi" is born.
"Force-sensitives" gather to form the Jedi Order on Ahch-To.
Sources: Nexus of Power, The Last Jedi, The Last Jedi "Expanded Edition" or unstupidly the novelization, and TLJ comic adaption.
The civilization on Bardotta began when the Frangawl Cult reigned over a militant society.
Sources: Nexus of Power, same timeline as before on Wookieepedia
C. 5,000 BBY
The Great Temple is built by the Massassi on Yavin 4
Sources: Journey through Space, Wookieepedia
So sources say the Elders from Naboo, but in-universe material states the Massassi are.
they are the celestials according to my research . some of them were the priests of force and they had spread and shared the tech and methods of force with other non-force sensitive beings and many people think they were the race who used but tech not clear in force . according to george lucas the narrator(the guy who says once upon a time long ago far far away in a galaxy) was r2d2 , he was telling it to invisible beings of force and celestials