||1986 - 1987
||Series in Custody
||1986 - 1987
||1839 - 1930
|Format of Records:
|Agency which created this SeriesAgency which created this Series|
|Agency currently responsible for this SeriesAgency currently responsible for this Series|
|Description of this SeriesDescription of this Series|
- How to use the Records
How to Use This Series
This catalogue is useful for identifying particular items in VPRS 44 where the file number of the correspondence is known. Therefore, unless the correspondence file number is already known because it has been cited elsewhere, the original control records (the registers and indexes created by the creating agencies to control and retrieve the correspondence) must be used to identify the file numbers of items of interest prior to using this catalogue.
Researchers who do not wish to locate a particular file number or who wish to browse the contents of VPRS 44 are advised to use the Records Description List to VPRS 44 (located in the Series Description Folders of each Search Room) which has been arranged in date of correspondence order and which gives a brief description of files and correspondence in many instances.
Though this catalogue was output in various formats the only formats which cover the entire contents of VPRS 44 are the Category and Number Order section and the Box and Item Order section. The latter is, as the name suggests, a listing in box number order and therefore not very useful when searching for a particular correspondence number. The former is arranged in registry number order and within these broad categories the information is arranged in correspondence number order.
Registry numbers were allocated to each item of correspondence or correspondence file in VPRS 44 as the catalogue was being compiled. They are intended to signify the registry in which the correspondence was originally received and registered. A description of the agency to which each registry number corresponds is listed below.
Having identified the registry system which most likely covers the correspondence you are searching for refer to the header of each fiche in the Category and Number Order section (there are 10 fiche in this section) and identify the fiche which covers the registry system you are after. The registry system is the first number on the left of the "from/to" section of the header of each fiche. (Note, the first fiche does not list registry system number 1 on its header because the first items to be listed on this fiche are those for which no registry system could be identified). The other numbers listed on the header are the first and last correspondence registration numbers found on that fiche.
Once you have identified which fiche to look at browse through until you find file numbers for the year you are looking for. Within each registry system listing the correspondence is listed by file number. The file number is made up of a year, an alphabetical register code and a sequential number. The items are listed firstly by year, then sequentially in file number order. (Note entries are not listed alphabetically by alphabetic register codes but strictly by file number, eg. file number 66 A/1551 would be listed after 66 B/1550).
If you locate the item you are looking for on the fiche take down the unit (box) number reference listed in the far right hand column of the fiche. This is the unit number of VPRS 44 you should then request from the Repository. The "item" number listed in the next right hand column is a computer allocated number which indicates the position of the item within the unit at the time the records were re-processed. This may no longer apply if the records have not been put back exactly as they were found after use in the Search Room.
Researchers should note that the bulk of the correspondence in VPRS 44 covers the 1856 to 1876 period and originated in the registry system of the Department of Crown Lands and Survey from this period. The original control records from this registry system are located in VPRS 226 Index to Inwards Correspondence (Microfilm Copy of VPRS 5522) and VPRS 227 Register of Inwards Correspondence (Microfilm Copy of VPRS 70) [available only in the Laverton Search Room]. This has been identified as Registry System 7 in this series. Other control records which apply to the various registry systems identified in this catalogue have been listed in Appendix 5 of the Lands Manual 1989 copies of which are available in both the Laverton and City Search Rooms.
This series consists of a microfiche catalogue which functions as a detailed inventory of the correspondence in VPRS 44 Inward Registered and Unregistered Correspondence. The series was created by the Department from a computer database which was itself created as part of a project to re-list and re-box VPRS 44 undertaken in 1986/87.
VPRS 44 is an "artificial" correspondence series made up of various inward correspondence series created by different government agencies responsible for Victorian land administration. The cumulative contents date range of the bulk of VPRS 44 is c.1839 to c.1878 (with a few items from late 19th century and early 20th century).
Background: Creation of the Microfiche Catalogue to VPRS 44
The original order of the records in VPRS 44 was severely disrupted by time and storage moves at the Lands Department. Not only was the arrangement of files to files disrupted, but also the relationship between items on files (ie. letters). As "dockets" were broken and split retrieval using the original methods (the 19th century registers and indexes) was hampered.
In order to rectify this a project to re-box and re-list all correspondence in VPRS 44 was undertaken by the Department of Conservation, Forests and Lands with National Estate Project funding in 1986/87. As part of the process of listing each file an attempt was made to identify the "registry system" it belonged to. In this way, having linked items to the registry system they were registered in, the original control records could be used to identify and retrieve correspondence in VPRS 44.
For the purpose of classification and retrieval a number was allocated to each registry system, refer to the end of this series description for a list of registry systems and numbers.
The catalogue lists :
Unit (Box) number and the number of the position of the item within the unit
Registry System number
File number, Catogory and Serial: Each file number contains two parts, which has been called a category and a serial. The category either indicates the year in which the correspondence was received and/or the volume in which it was registered; the district in which the correspondence was registered; or the section of the Act under which the land was selected. The serial is the consecutive number allocated to an individual letter.
48/362: The 362nd letter received and registered in the year 1848. 48/ is the category, 362 is the serial.
72F 10621: The 10621st letter received in 1872, which was registered in volume F. 72F is the category, 10621 is the serial.
H 251: the 251st letter registered in the H volumes according to name of sender/subject. H is the category, 251 is the serial.
437/31: File relating to the 437th land transaction under Section 31 of the Land Act 1869. 31 is the category, 437 is the serial. Such numbers are sometimes duplicated for different land districts.
Years From, To: Date range of file, noting years of earliest and latest papers.
Code: Letter code intended for sorting on parish (P), township (T), or county (C). Some subject codes were also inserted, but were not used for computer sorting.
Locality/Subject: parish, township, county, other locality names, or subject information.
Allotment, Section: a parish or township is usually divided into sections, then allotments. These are identified by numbers and/or letters, Sometimes files refer to other units of land, eg. lot, block, portion, which have also been listed.
Area A,R,P: the area of a site was measured in acres, roods and perches
Land District: the Land or Survey District to which the file relates. These districts were used for administrative and survey purposes. They encompassed many parishes and townships and often parts of several counties. District boundaries changed over time.
System of Arrangement/Control
The data was output from the database in various arrangements:
Category and Number Order
Box and Item Order
Description by Land District
County, Parish, Town Order
[the last three only cover the first 51 boxes of VPRS 44, see below for exceptions]
Category and Number Order
This part of the catalogue is arranged sequentially by Registry System number, and within each section sequentially in file number order. (Note entries are not listed alphabetically by alphabetic register codes but strictly by file number, eg. file number 66 A/1551 would be listed after 66 B/1550).
Entries for which a registry system could not be identified have been listed at the start of this section of the catalogue.
Box and Item Order
Listing of items in unit (box) number order
Description by Land District, Text Description and County, Parish, Town Order
These sections of the catalogue only cover a small percentage of the files in VPRS 44. After fully listing the contents of the first 51 boxes, it was decided that it was not feasible to provide locality/subject details for most of the remaining files. However, in certain cases exceptions were made; where file numbers could not be traced; unregistered files, or files with no known indexes/registers and; large files (indicating greater importance).
County, Parish, Town Order: files are grouped according to Parish, Township and County.
Land District: Where county, parish or township was not identifiable, records are grouped according to land district.
Text Description: Where no locality was apparent subject details were sometimes noted.
List of Registry Systems and numbers used to identify them in this Catalogue
Registry numbers roughly equate with an agency's recordkeeping system. From the list below identify the agency which is most likely to have created the records you are seeking. Note: 95% of the records in VPRS 44 are from Registry System 7, which relates to Lands Department General Registry correspondence for the period 1856 - 1876. Researchers will also need to refer to VPRS 226 and VPRS 227 to access specific correspondence for this period. See the series description for VPRS 44 for more information. For Lands Department general registry correspondence for the period 1876 - 1896 see Registry System 8.
No. Registry System Date
1 Superintendent of Port Phillip District: Inward Correspondence
2 Land Branch (of Colonial Secretary's Office): Inward Correspondence
3 Colonial Secretary's Office/Chief Secretary's Office: Inward Correspondence
4 Chief Commissioner of Crown lands: Inward Correspondence
5 Surveyor-General: Inward Correspondence from Colonial Secretary
6 Surveyor-General: Inward Correspondence other than from Colonial Secretary
7 Lands (Department) General Registry: Inward Correspondence
8 Lands (Department) Alphabetical Registry: Inward Correspondence
9 Lands (Department), Occupation Branch: Inward Correspondence
10 Surveyor-in-Charge/Surveyor-General: Outward Correspondence
11 Portland Survey Office and District: Inward and Outward Correspondence (includes outward registered letters and unregistered material. NOTE: Some letters to Surveyor-General from Portland can be found under system 19).
12 Colonial Secretary (Land Branch): Outward Correspondence to Surveyor-General
13 Colonial Treasurer: Outward Correspondence
14 Colonial Secretary (Finance Branch): Outward Correspondence
15 Williamstown Survey Office: Outward Correspondence
16 Geelong Survey Office & District: Outward Correspondence (NOTE: Some letters to Surveyor-General from Geelong can be found under system 19).
17 Commissioner of Crown Lands Westernport District: Inward Correspondence (unregistered)
18 Police Office Kilmore (Clerk of Petty Sessions): Outward Correspondence of Chief Commissioner of Crown Lands and Commissioner of Crown Lands Westernport District (registered and unregistered)
19 Office of Surveyor-in-Charge/Surveyor-General: Inward Correspondence, mainly from officers in the field, eg. Surveyors (registered and unregistered). NOTE: When file numbers are listed they indicate either the original number on the back of the actual letter or the number on the cover. Many of the files were grouped according to sender or subject, and renumbered on their covers.
20 Commissioner of Crown Lands Murray District (Police Magistrate Benalla): Inward Correspondence (unregistered)
21 Assistant Surveyor Wilmot: Outward Correspondence to Surveyor-General
22 Commissioner of crown Lands & Survey: Outward Correspondence to Surveyor-General
23 Police Magistrates, Regional Offices: Outward Correspondence to Surveyor-General
24 Taradale survey Office and District: Outward Correspondence
25 Sandhurst Survey Office and District: Outward Correspondence
26 Lands, 'A.B.' (Account Branch): Outward Correspondence
1858, 1860, 1861, 1863
27 Lands, 'L.B.' (?): Outward Correspondence
28 Lands, 'S.B.' (?): Outward Correspondence
29 Lands, 'G.B.' (?): Outward Correspondence
30 Lands, 'S.B.' (Sale Branch?): Outward Correspondence
31 Lands, 'C.F.B.' (?): Outward Correspondence
32 Treasurer: Inward and Outward Correspondence
33 Secretary for Railways: Inward Correspondence
34 President of the Board of Land and Works: Inward Correspondence (NOTE: The numbers on the file covers are not listed as they only indicate the sequential/chronological ordering of files when grouped according to sender or subject).
35 Executive Council of Victoria: Inward and Outward Correspondence
36 Land Occupation Branch: Outward Correspondence
37 Department of Roads and Bridges: Inward Correspondence
38 Government Geologist ('G.S.O.'): Inward Correspondence
39 R. Brough Smyth
a) Secretary Board of Science
b) Secretary Central Board for the Protection of the Aborigines
c) Secretary for Mines (see also 42-Department of Mines): Inward Correspondence
40 Lands: Inward Correspondence (NOTE: These files seem to be mainly applications for selection under various sections of the Land Acts).
41 Melbourne Lands & Survey Office (Board of Science): Outward Correspondence
42 Department of Mines: Inward Correspondence
43 Engineer-in-Chief, Railways: Inward Correspondence
44 Secretary for Mines/Chief Mining Surveyor: Outward Correspondence
45 Central Board for the Protection of the Aborigines: Outward Correspondence
46 Government Storekeeper: Inward Correspondence
47 Staff Matters/Employment Applications: Inward Correspondence (NOTE: some letters can be found under other systems-chiefly 7 and 19).
48 Department of Trade and Customs: Inward Correspondence
49 Board of Land and Works: Inward Correspondence
50 Lands (Survey Branch): Outward Correspondence
51 Inspector-General of Customs: Inward Correspondence
52 Applications under Section 42, Land Act 1865
53 Applications under Section 47, Land Act 1865
54 Inspector-General, Public Works: Inward Correspondence
55 Postmaster-General: Inward Correspondence
56 Legislative Assembly: Inward Correspondence
57 Law Department: Inward Correspondence
58 Valuations of Improvements on Land (Note: Some valuations are under system 7; unregistered valuations have not been classified under any system).
59 Water Supply, Department of Public Works: Inward Correspondence
60 Water Supply, Department of Public Works: Outward Correspondence
61 Applications under Section 31 Land Act 1869
62 Applications under Section 49 Land Act 1869
63 Superintendent of Port Phillip District: Inward Correspondence relating to Aboriginal Affairs
64 Registrar of Titles: Inward Correspondence
65 Applications under Section 19 Land Act 1869
66 Secretary, Railways and Roads
67 Applications under Section 33 Land Act 1869
- Function / Content
- Recordkeeping System
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