Series VPRS 8670
Microfiche Catalogue of Crown Lands and Survey Files in VPRS 44 (Computer Output Microfiche)
About this Series Related Series Accessing the records in this Series
Date Range: Series 1986 - 1987
  Series in Custody 1986 - 1987
  Contents 1839 - 1930
Public Access: Closed
Location: Other
Format of Records: Physical
 
Agency which created this SeriesAgency which created this Series
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Date Range Agency Title Agency Number
1986 - 1987 Department of Conservation, Forests and Lands VA 1034
Agency currently responsible for this SeriesAgency currently responsible for this Series
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Date Range Agency Title Agency Number
1992 - 1996 Department of Conservation and Natural Resources VA 3097
2002 - cont Department of Sustainability and Environment VA 4554
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.

    Step 1

    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.

    Step 2

    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.

    Step 3

    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).

    Step 4

    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.

    Function/Contents

    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.
    eg.
    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
    Text Description
    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
    1839-1851


    2 Land Branch (of Colonial Secretary's Office): Inward Correspondence
    1847-1852


    3 Colonial Secretary's Office/Chief Secretary's Office: Inward Correspondence
    1851-1874


    4 Chief Commissioner of Crown lands: Inward Correspondence



    5 Surveyor-General: Inward Correspondence from Colonial Secretary
    1854-1855


    6 Surveyor-General: Inward Correspondence other than from Colonial Secretary
    1854-1855


    7 Lands (Department) General Registry: Inward Correspondence
    1856-1876


    8 Lands (Department) Alphabetical Registry: Inward Correspondence
    1876-1896


    9 Lands (Department), Occupation Branch: Inward Correspondence
    1874-1875


    10 Surveyor-in-Charge/Surveyor-General: Outward Correspondence
    1842-1851


    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).
    1847-1861
    (1870)


    12 Colonial Secretary (Land Branch): Outward Correspondence to Surveyor-General
    1851-1854


    13 Colonial Treasurer: Outward Correspondence
    1851


    14 Colonial Secretary (Finance Branch): Outward Correspondence
    1853


    15 Williamstown Survey Office: Outward Correspondence
    1854-1856


    16 Geelong Survey Office & District: Outward Correspondence (NOTE: Some letters to Surveyor-General from Geelong can be found under system 19).
    1852-1855
    1859


    17 Commissioner of Crown Lands Westernport District: Inward Correspondence (unregistered)
    1853


    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)
    1853


    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.
    1848-1856


    20 Commissioner of Crown Lands Murray District (Police Magistrate Benalla): Inward Correspondence (unregistered)
    1853-1854


    21 Assistant Surveyor Wilmot: Outward Correspondence to Surveyor-General
    1854-1855


    22 Commissioner of crown Lands & Survey: Outward Correspondence to Surveyor-General
    1855


    23 Police Magistrates, Regional Offices: Outward Correspondence to Surveyor-General
    1855


    24 Taradale survey Office and District: Outward Correspondence
    1855-1856


    25 Sandhurst Survey Office and District: Outward Correspondence
    1855 (1857)


    26 Lands, 'A.B.' (Account Branch): Outward Correspondence
    1858, 1860, 1861, 1863


    27 Lands, 'L.B.' (?): Outward Correspondence
    1856


    28 Lands, 'S.B.' (?): Outward Correspondence
    1856


    29 Lands, 'G.B.' (?): Outward Correspondence
    1856-1870


    30 Lands, 'S.B.' (Sale Branch?): Outward Correspondence
    1856


    31 Lands, 'C.F.B.' (?): Outward Correspondence
    1856


    32 Treasurer: Inward and Outward Correspondence
    1856-1874


    33 Secretary for Railways: Inward Correspondence
    1858-1870


    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).
    1858-1859


    35 Executive Council of Victoria: Inward and Outward Correspondence
    1857-1890


    36 Land Occupation Branch: Outward Correspondence
    1859-1860
    1874-1875


    37 Department of Roads and Bridges: Inward Correspondence
    1859-1861


    38 Government Geologist ('G.S.O.'): Inward Correspondence
    1860


    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
    1860-1861
    1869


    40 Lands: Inward Correspondence (NOTE: These files seem to be mainly applications for selection under various sections of the Land Acts).
    1860-1863


    41 Melbourne Lands & Survey Office (Board of Science): Outward Correspondence
    1860


    42 Department of Mines: Inward Correspondence
    1861-1874

    43 Engineer-in-Chief, Railways: Inward Correspondence
    1861-1871


    44 Secretary for Mines/Chief Mining Surveyor: Outward Correspondence
    1861-1876


    45 Central Board for the Protection of the Aborigines: Outward Correspondence
    1861


    46 Government Storekeeper: Inward Correspondence
    1863


    47 Staff Matters/Employment Applications: Inward Correspondence (NOTE: some letters can be found under other systems-chiefly 7 and 19).
    1864-1876


    48 Department of Trade and Customs: Inward Correspondence
    1869, 1874


    49 Board of Land and Works: Inward Correspondence
    1865-1866


    50 Lands (Survey Branch): Outward Correspondence
    1865-1866


    51 Inspector-General of Customs: Inward Correspondence
    1865


    52 Applications under Section 42, Land Act 1865
    1865-1869


    53 Applications under Section 47, Land Act 1865
    1862-1865


    54 Inspector-General, Public Works: Inward Correspondence
    1866-1870


    55 Postmaster-General: Inward Correspondence
    1867-1874


    56 Legislative Assembly: Inward Correspondence
    1868


    57 Law Department: Inward Correspondence
    1868-1869


    58 Valuations of Improvements on Land (Note: Some valuations are under system 7; unregistered valuations have not been classified under any system).
    1869


    59 Water Supply, Department of Public Works: Inward Correspondence
    1868-1871


    60 Water Supply, Department of Public Works: Outward Correspondence
    1870


    61 Applications under Section 31 Land Act 1869
    1865-1880


    62 Applications under Section 49 Land Act 1869
    1870-1879


    63 Superintendent of Port Phillip District: Inward Correspondence relating to Aboriginal Affairs



    64 Registrar of Titles: Inward Correspondence
    1872-1873


    65 Applications under Section 19 Land Act 1869
    1870-1879


    66 Secretary, Railways and Roads
    1876


    67 Applications under Section 33 Land Act 1869

  • Function / Content


  • Recordkeeping System


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1839 - 1930 Inward Registered and Unregistered Correspondence VPRS 44
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P0001 1839 - 1930 Closed 0
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