Public Record Office Victoria  
Home Contact Us Site Map
 
Series VPRS 439
Land Selection Files, by Land District, Section 49 Land Act 1869
About this Series Related Series Accessing the records in this Series
Date Range: Series ? 1871 - ? 1945
  Series in Custody 1871 - ? 1945
  Contents 1871 - ? 1945
Public Access: Open
Location: North Melbourne
Format of Records: Physical
 
Agency which created this SeriesAgency which created this Series
Display entries per page
Date Range Agency Title Agency Number
? 1871 - ? 1945 Department of Crown Lands and Survey VA 538
Agency currently responsible for this SeriesAgency currently responsible for this Series
Display entries per page
Date Range Agency Title Agency Number
2013 - cont Office of the Registrar-General and the Office of Titles, (known as Land Victoria from 2001 to ct.) VA 862
Description of this SeriesDescription of this Series
  • How to use the Records
    *** RESEARCHERS PLEASE NOTE: ***
    Although the P0 consignment of the series is listed by item, researchers must order an entire unit (box), the records are not available for order as individual items.

    To retrieve records a file number is required. To obtain a file number:

    1. Consult Parish and Township plans available on microfiche in the Reading Rooms. Parish plans are also available for public use at Lands Victoria. The file number is shown as a fraction with the denominator (bottom line) giving the category of the file and numerator (the top line) being the serial or sequential number of the file.

    OR

    2. Consult VPRS 13128 Registers of Applications, Section 49 Land Act 1869 for 1870 to 1874 or Index to Applications by Land District or, after 1874, Register of Applications, Section 49 Land Act 1869 by Land District.

    OR

    3. Where the allotment and section of the land is known as well as the parish, consult the microfiche catalogue VPRS 7312 Microfiche Catalogue to Crown Land and Survey Files: Parish / Township Order or VPRS 7311 Microfiche Catalogue to Crown Land And Survey Files: File Number Order.

    Once a file number has been obtained, consult the Microfiche Catalogues (VPRS 7311 or VPRS 7312) to retrieve the file.

  • Function / Content
    The introduction of the Land Act 1869 saw all Crown land not previously occupied in Victoria opened up for selection. The aim of the legislation was to encourage settlement on lands that would be most advantageous to the colony.
    Section 49 of the Land Act 1869 replaced Section 42 of the Amending Land Act 1865 as licensees under that provision were now able, under Section 31 of the 1869 Act to purchase the land they had occupied under license. Under the original Section 49 selectors could apply for a licence to occupy and cultivate auriferous (gold bearing) land. The licence was for one year and the size of the land occupied was not to exceed 20 acres. The licence was renewable each year with the payment of a licence fee. A selector could not hold more than one licence.

    In 1880, Section 4 of the Land Acts Amendment Act gave holders of licenses under Section 49 the exclusive right to buy their holdings. The price was to be determined by the Board of Land and Works.

    When an application to select Crown land was received by the Department it would be registered in a register of applications. Prior to 1874 and the establishment of the Occupation Branch all applications made under section 49 of the Land Act 1869 were recorded in the same series of registers irrespective of location as in VPRS 13128 Registers of Applications, Section 49 Land Act 1869.

    Separate registers of applications were usually created for each section of the Land Act under which individuals could apply to select land. For example, all applications received under section 49 of the Land Act 1869 were recorded in the same register.

    In an attempt to try and rationalise the way the Department managed Crown land, the Occupation Branch was established in 1874 under the influence of H Byron Moore, Assistant Surveyor General. The Occupation Branch was to deal with all matters relating to the occupation of Crown land.

    The State was divided into fifteen Land Districts, these being Ararat, Ballarat, Beechworth, Benalla, Castlemaine and Dunolly, Echuca, Geelong Warrnambool and Camperdown, Hamilton, Horsham, Melbourne, Sale and Bairnsdale, Sandhurst (Bendigo), Seymour and St Arnaud. Each District was represented at the Occupation Branch in Melbourne by a 'District Land Office'.

    Each District Land Office consisted of a double table or desk at which both a clerk and draughtsman sat. Everything in the way of files, maps and plans were at convenient reach. The same officers dealt with the sale of Crown land from its 'inception to its disposition'. The District Offices' staff consisted essentially of a clerical officer and a draughtsman who dealt solely with that Land District. It was their business to know the District and to deal with all land business related to it.
    By 1877 each District Land Office, consisted of a District Officer, a rental clerk, a draughtsman and several general clerks.

    After the establishment of the Occupation Branch in 1874 and the division of the State into Land Districts, applications were registered by District. Each 'District Land Office' created and maintained their own series of registers of applications. Any new applications received by the Department after 1874 were registered in separate District registers with applications numbers that were allocated from the number one onwards. The same application number could be allocated for selections in different Districts. For example the application number 1021/49 could exist in both the Ballarat and Bendigo Land Districts It is the District name plus the accompanying file number that is the unique identifier.

    The District Surveyor would enter into the register of applications the application number, the date the application was received, the applicants' name, occupation and parish, the allotment number and size (in acres, roods and perches) applied for. The application was then forwarded to the appropriate District Land Office at the Occupation Branch in Melbourne. It was then entered in a duplicate register of applications there against the same application number. The District Surveyor also forwarded a tracing of the allotment applied for.

    The position of the allotment applied for was immediately charted on a working plan in pencil. The tracing was then sent to the Department of Mines and Water Supply (VA 2720) for a report on any mining objections. If there were no mining objections the application would be heard before a Local Land Board. Local Land Boards were made up of representatives from the local community and the Department of Crown Lands and Survey (VA 538). The Boards would hear from all applicants for an allotment and would decide who was to be granted the licence or lease. The schedule documenting the decisions of the Local Land Board was forwarded to the appropriate District Land Office at the Occupation Branch and the decision was entered into the register of applications

    The Board of Land and Works (VA 744), the statutory authority for the management of Crown land would give final approval for land selection, acting on the recommendation of the Local Land Board. The decision of the Board of Lands and Works (VA 744) was then recorded in the register of applications. The registers also record the date of the licence issue and any subsequent action in relation to that file. The selectors granted each allotment would then be recorded on the working plan by the District Land Office draughtsman at the Occupation Branch. The tracing of the allotment was then sent to the Crown Land Bailiff responsible for that Land District.

    After the creation of the Occupation Branch, applications made under the Land Act 1869 that had been registered prior to 1874 were copied to District Indexes that were separate from registers created for new applications received. These District Indexes that recorded pre 1874 applications are arranged alphabetically but the application numbers are not consecutive.

    The new registers of applications were arranged by Land District and by section of Land Act applications were received under. For example, all applications received under section 49 of the Land Act 1869 for the Ballarat Land District were recorded in the same series of registers. Sections of an Act that were less common were often recorded in the one District register.

    Registers of applications control selection and occupation files. If an application to select Crown land was successful, the application number would become the file number. For example if an application to select under section 49 of the Land Act 1869 was registered as application number 324 then the selection or occupation file number would be 324/49.

    The application number remained the selection file number for a particular piece of land if all terms and conditions were met and the selection resulted in a Crown Grant. However, often the original selector did not end up owning the land. Many selectors forfeited or abandoned their licence. If this were the case then the land was re-opened up for selection. Any new applicants were registered in a register of applications under a new application number. The original applicants file would be attached to the new selectors file. The new file number was annotated in the register against the original selectors' entry.

    Even if the same selector applied for a licence on land he had previously forfeited a new application number would be allocated and the file would have a new selection file number.

    The files in this series were created as part of this recordkeeping system after the establishment of the Occupation Branch with the procedures as outlined above. Typically, files contain a Certificate of Registration as an applicant, the actual detailed application form and may contain the details of the location of the land and a plan of it as well as the District Surveyor's report. The applicant was issued with a Goldfields Residence and Cultivation License once again showing a plan of the land and the amount of rent payable per annum. The file may contain correspondence regarding the application or the payment of rent. Holders of these licenses became able to purchase the land they were occupying under Section 4 of the Land Acts Amendment Act 1880. File may contain an application for such a purchase which is annotated with the reports of surveyors, draftsmen and mining reports. Upon purchase credit was allowed for the value of rent paid and the value of improvements made to the land. Details may be found of the calculation of the actual payment made and the preparation and issue of the Crown grant.

  • Recordkeeping System
    Files are arranged according to Land District. Within each Land District, files are arranged in numerical order, the number corresponding with the application number allocated in the Register of Applications.

More research resourcesMore research resources
    PROVguide055 Land Records
Indexes and RegistersIndexes and Registers
Displaying 1 to 20 of 55  Go To First Page Of List Go To Previous Page Of List of 3 Go To Next Page Of List Go To Last Page Of List 
Display entries per page
Date Range Series Title Series Number
1873 - ? 1900 Index to Land Selection Files, Section 49 Land Act 1869 VPRS 13180
1874 - ? 1875 Register of Inward Correspondence, Beechworth Land District VPRS 14273
1874 - 1876 Register of Inward Correspondence, Melbourne Land District VPRS 14271
1874 - 1876 Register of Inward Correspondence, Echuca Land District VPRS 14274
1874 - 1876 Register of Inward Correspondence, Occupation Branch VPRS 621
1874 - 1877 Register of Applications, Melbourne, Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Melbourne District Survey Office) VPRS 13164
1874 - 1880 Register of Applications, Beechworth, Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Occupation Branch) VPRS 13160
1874 - 1880 Registers of Applications, Dunolly, Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Dunolly District Survey Office) VPRS 13167
1874 - 1880 Register of Applications, Sandhurst, Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Sandhurst District Survey Office) VPRS 13135
1874 - 1881 Register of Applications, Echuca, Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Echuca District Survey Office) VPRS 13143
1874 - 1883 Register of Applications, Echuca, Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Occupation Branch) VPRS 13142
1874 - 1884 Register of Applications, Hamilton, Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Occupation Branch) VPRS 13169
1874 - 1884 Register of Applications, Hamilton, Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Hamilton District Survey Office) VPRS 13170
1874 - 1885 Registers of Applications, Geelong, Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Occupation Branch) VPRS 13149
1874 - 1885 Register of Applications, Geelong (Camperdown and Warrnambool), Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Occupation Branch) VPRS 13151
1874 - 1885 Registers of Applications, Geelong (Camperdown and Warrnambool), Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Geelong - Camperdown and Warrnambool District Survey Office) VPRS 13152
1874 - 1888 Register of Applications, Melbourne, Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Occupation Branch) VPRS 13163
1874 - 1888 Register of Applications, Benalla, Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Occupation Branch). VPRS 13131
1874 - 1889 Register of Applications, Seymour, Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Occupation Branch) VPRS 13134
1874 - 1889 Register of Applications, Bairnsdale, Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Bairnsdale District Survey Office) VPRS 13137
Controlled SeriesControlled Series
Display entries per page
Date Range Series Title Series Number
Previous SeriesPrevious Series
Display entries per page
Transfer Date Series Title Series Number
Subsequent SeriesSubsequent Series
Display entries per page
Transfer Date Series Title Series Number
List/s of records in this seriesList/s of records in this series
Display entries per page
Consignment Number Contents Date Range Public Access No. of Units
P0000 ? 1872 - ? 1945 Open 309
P0001 1871 - 1932 Open 1
Indexes and RegistersIndexes and Registers
Displaying 1 to 20 of 55  Go To First Page Of List Go To Previous Page Of List of 3 Go To Next Page Of List Go To Last Page Of List 
Display entries per page
Date Range Series Title Series Number
1873 - ? 1900 Index to Land Selection Files, Section 49 Land Act 1869 VPRS 13180
1874 - ? 1875 Register of Inward Correspondence, Beechworth Land District VPRS 14273
1874 - 1876 Register of Inward Correspondence, Melbourne Land District VPRS 14271
1874 - 1876 Register of Inward Correspondence, Echuca Land District VPRS 14274
1874 - 1876 Register of Inward Correspondence, Occupation Branch VPRS 621
1874 - 1877 Register of Applications, Melbourne, Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Melbourne District Survey Office) VPRS 13164
1874 - 1880 Register of Applications, Beechworth, Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Occupation Branch) VPRS 13160
1874 - 1880 Registers of Applications, Dunolly, Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Dunolly District Survey Office) VPRS 13167
1874 - 1880 Register of Applications, Sandhurst, Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Sandhurst District Survey Office) VPRS 13135
1874 - 1881 Register of Applications, Echuca, Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Echuca District Survey Office) VPRS 13143
1874 - 1883 Register of Applications, Echuca, Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Occupation Branch) VPRS 13142
1874 - 1884 Register of Applications, Hamilton, Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Occupation Branch) VPRS 13169
1874 - 1884 Register of Applications, Hamilton, Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Hamilton District Survey Office) VPRS 13170
1874 - 1885 Registers of Applications, Geelong, Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Occupation Branch) VPRS 13149
1874 - 1885 Register of Applications, Geelong (Camperdown and Warrnambool), Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Occupation Branch) VPRS 13151
1874 - 1885 Registers of Applications, Geelong (Camperdown and Warrnambool), Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Geelong - Camperdown and Warrnambool District Survey Office) VPRS 13152
1874 - 1888 Register of Applications, Melbourne, Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Occupation Branch) VPRS 13163
1874 - 1888 Register of Applications, Benalla, Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Occupation Branch). VPRS 13131
1874 - 1889 Register of Applications, Seymour, Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Occupation Branch) VPRS 13134
1874 - 1889 Register of Applications, Bairnsdale, Section 49 Land Act 1869 (Bairnsdale District Survey Office) VPRS 13137
More research resourcesMore research resources
    PROVguide055 Land Records

More Help
Help On This Page

A series is a group of records which are recorded or maintained by the same agency (or agencies)

Series information helps you to understand the context of records - why, when and by whom they were created.

To locate records use the "Accessing the records" tab.

More about series details pages

   
© Copyright 2005   Government of Victoria   Disclaimer    Accessibility   Privacy   Contact Us