Archive for the ‘Australia’ Category

ANZAC Day – April 25th

Thursday, April 24th, 2014

ANZAC Day - April 25th

Records From Queensland: Public Service Employees, Classification Lists, and Cemetery Monumental Inscriptions

Friday, December 5th, 2008

The major collection this week at includes a variety of records from the Queensland Family History Society, Queensland’s leading family history and genealogy organization as well as the State’s largest genealogical bookshop.

The databases in this launch include the following (Note the Queensland Public Service database has been launched. The rest of the databases will be launched throughout the week.)

* Queensland Public Service 1864 – 1948
* Classification List of the Queensland Loco Enginemen, Firemen, & Cleaners 1912 South
* Brisbane Cemetery Monumental Inscriptions
* Toowong Cemetery Monumental Inscriptions

The Queensland Public Service 1864 – 1948 database includes:

1. An index to approx 65,000 Queensland Public Service Employees’ entries published periodically in the Queensland Government Gazette from 1864 to 1948 (or Queensland Blue Book for 1870-1879). The index gives name, present office, location, date of birth, date of initial appointment, and the date, page and volume of the Government Gazette reference. Further information in the Gazette or Blue Book may include salary, allowance, qualifications and appointment details.

2. An index to approx 35,000 names of teachers mentioned in the Education Office Gazette from 1907 to 1920. The index covers teacher admissions, promotions, transfers and resignations, listing the name, type of entry, standing, school/s, date and page reference in the Education Office Gazette.

3. An index to approx 12,500 names from School Committee notices in the Queensland Government Gazette between commencement year of 1876 and 1899. The school committee index covers notices of appointments and resignations for over 300 schools from all regions of Queensland.

Classification List of the Queensland Loco Enginemen, Firemen, & Cleaners 1912 is an excellent database for researching Queensland railway families and railway history. The database includes many records not previously published on microfiche.

South Brisbane Cemetery Monumental Inscriptions presents an index to the inscriptions on headstones and plaques in the South Brisbane (Dutton Park) cemetery, Brisbane, as transcribed during the 1980s by members of the Queensland Family History Society, with some more recent inscriptions added later. The original transcriptions were published by QFHS on microfiche.

The index covers 12,620 names from the inscriptions. The first burial listed in this database was in 1870. The cemetery was closed for new plots in 1961-1962, although a few were released in 1998-1999 and burials continued in family plots. Memorials range from those of prominent early residents to those of prisoners from nearby Boggo Road Gaol.

This data is a valuable resource, especially as time and vandalism take their toll on the headstones. As well as confirming or showing possible errors in the burial register, the database often show family relationships for 3 or 4 generations, including names of people not buried in the grave. Details can include parents, birth place and date, marriage information, titles and honors. Neighbouring plots can include related families.

Toowong Cemetery Monumental Inscriptions is an index that references approximately 47,000 names – on memorials still standing, on graves demolished once they were considered unsafe; and on inscriptions from the columbarium.

Toowong Cemetery is Brisbane’s largest. The transcriptions were undertaken by members of the Queensland Family History Society Inc. between 1983 and 1987.

Although Colonel Samuel Wensley Blackall (Queensland’s second Governor) was the first person to be buried at Toowong Cemetery in 1871, several memorials predate his grave. In 1881, the bodies of the three children of the guards (convict settlement) who died in the early 1830s, were exhumed from a North Quay site and, with the original headstones, transferred to Toowong. After the Paddington Cemeteries Act of 1911, a number of remains and memorials from this cemetery were also removed to Toowong.

The number of burials in Toowong Cemetery is unknown, though by 1963 a total of 106,000 burials were said to have taken place.

Described by the Lord Mayor of Brisbane, in 1994, as a project of great significance for the records of the City of Brisbane – no library or family historian should be without it.

Note: Sources for databases provided by the Queensland Family History Society.

About the Queensland Family History Society
The Queensland Family History Society Incorporated (QFHS) was formed in Brisbane in 1979 as a non-profit, non-sectarian, non-political organisation. The Society aims to promote the study of family, and local history, genealogy, and heraldry, and encourage the collection and preservation of records relating to the history of Queensland families. The Society has a variety of affiliations, including the Australasian Federation of Family History Organisations Inc. (AFFHO) , the Royal Historical Society of Queensland (RHSQ), History Queensland Inc. (HQ) formerly the Queensland Association of Local and Family History Societies Inc (QALFHS), and the Federation of Family History Societies (UK) (FFHS).

Electoral Rolls, Police Gazettes, and Unclaimed Letters From Australia

Thursday, November 6th, 2008

This week’s major collection at includes Australian content from three different databases.

  • Queensland Australia Electoral Rolls 1934 & 1949
  • Queensland Police Gazette 1864 – 1874
  • Queensland Australia Unclaimed Letters

As stated last week, an electoral roll contains a list of the names of all people registered to vote in a particular area. The earliest electoral rolls in Australia begin in the 1840s, for the states of New South Wales and Victoria.

TheQueensland Police Gazette 1864-1874 contains 31,196 records. Each result contains the name, the topic (reason the warrant was issued), the volume and page number, and the date.

The Queensland Unclaimed Letters Index 1864-1874 was compiled by the Queensland Family History Society between 1997 and 2003, along with the Queensland Police Gazette 1864-1874. The Queensland Unclaimed Letters database provides an index to the names in the monthly lists of Unclaimed Letters published in the Queensland Government Gazette between 1864 and 1874. Currently this database contains 202,473 records.

The index is a valuable aid for locating early colonists in Queensland. Knowing where your ancestors were is often not easy to determine, particularly if no significant event occurred which let a paper trail. Many of them moved frequently, either seeking employment or chasing gold. As a result letters were often not able to be delivered – the last address was no longer applicable. The addresses given in this index will assist tracing just where that ancestor was, even it he or she was no longer there by the time these letters were due for delivery!

New Australian Records Online From Ryerson Index

Friday, October 24th, 2008

This week’s Major Collection at features an update to the existing Ryerson Index, which contains contemporary death notices, obituaries, and genealogical queries published in two Sydney daily newspapers, the Sydney Morning Herald and the Daily Telegraph.

The Ryerson Index ( was published as one of’s first large Australian databases. The update to the Ryerson Index contains 1,298, 320 new records, and is part of the Australian collection. The Ryerson Index is free to access as part of the global search at Free access is possible because of the way the content is indexed at For example, when an individual does a search and there is a “hit” on a name that is in the Ryerson index, once an individual clicks on the link, the search box on the Ryerson index web site is automatically populated with that search.

The Ryerson Index plugs a hole in available resources for those researching in Australia. There are no official records available for deaths post 1985 (in New South Wales), and from varying dates for other states. By indexing the deaths published in all major, and many smaller newspapers in New South Wales, the volunteers helping with the Ryerson index continue to make that gap in the records less of a brick wall for researchers. The Ryerson index has also been expanded to include other states of Australia, and now has a large number of entries from the major newspapers in Victoria, Queensland and South Australia. Combined, these four states cover about 85% of the Australian population.

This month is the tenth birthday of the Ryerson Index! In that time, volunteers have indexed more than 1.84 million entries, and are currently adding entries at the rate of more than 250,000 per year. There are approximately 120 active indexers, all volunteers, covering the 139 newspapers included in the index. Many indexers have taken on the task of back-indexing their local paper, with some papers now complete for between 40 and 60 years back from the present. The Ryerson Index is now being recognized as an essential resource for Australian research. They look forward to indexing their two millionth record (around mid-2009), and to continuing to expand in the future.

New South Wales and Norfolk Deaths Australia 1788 -1810 Index

Wednesday, June 25th, 2008

Cathy Dunn, Heritage and History consultant from New South Wales, Australia, compiled the New South Wales and Norfolk Deaths Australia 1788 – 1810 index.

“This database is a great resource for both family historians because of the diverse information that it contains,” said Cathy Dunn. “It is compiled from old family records, and is a consolidated list from references to deaths in primary records. I have included where known, shipping records and other references.”

Included in the database are the location, surname, first name, burial date and notes. Many of the notes contain rich information.

Here’s an excerpt from one of the notes:

“Convict Active 1791. Collins: The death of Mr. George Barrington who, for a long time, was in the situation of chief constable at Parramatta, ought to have been previously adverted to, as his decease took place some time before this period. During his residence in the colony, he had conducted himself with singular propriety of conduct; and, by his industry, had saved some money; but, for a considerable time previous to his death, he was in a state of insanity, and was constantly attended by a trusty person. The general opinion of those around him was, that he brought on this malady, so destructive to the majesty of man, by his serious and sorrowful reflexions on his former career of iniquity. His death, however, was that of a good man, and a sincere Christian. He expressed a very considerable degree of displeasure, when he was in a state of sanity, at his name being affixed to a narrative, which he knew only by report, as being about to be published, and which subsequently did appear, under a deceptious mask. Born as George WALDRON 14 May 1755 at Maynooth Co Kildare Ireland.”

The Value of Government and Police Gazettes in Australian and New Zealand Genealogy

Friday, May 30th, 2008

By Sherry Lindsay,

Most genealogists and family history enthusiasts are unaware of the immense value of the government and police gazettes available in Australia and New Zealand. Most family historians, even in Australia and New Zealand, don’t even know what the gazettes are, let alone how they can be used in genealogy research.

As part of its the World Collection launch, World Vital Records partnered with Archive CD Books Australia to provide a vast array of excellent content from Australia as well as other nearby countries. Included in that content are 276 databases, 174 of which are government and police gazettes, a highly valuable but underused resource for researching genealogy in that area of the world. Click here to view these databases.

Government gazettes typically contain information that the government wanted the general population of the state to be aware of. Generally this would include any sort of new government policy, taxing issues, land for sale, lists of unclaimed letters available at post offices and the like. These gazettes are often abundant in names, and even if your ancestor did not have a career in the government, it is still possible that you might find his name in a government gazette.

Police gazettes were a bit different, and often contain more amusing, anecdotal evidence. Police gazettes were generally published by states and territories each year, and they contained information meant especially for police. Do not assume, however, that only criminals’ names or police officers’ names were used in the gazettes; people of all types were mentioned in gazettes, even law-abiding citizens. For instance, a person who had been robbed would be mentioned in a gazette, and so would a person who had filed for a license to run a business within a town.

Because the gazettes generally include details about day-to-day life, they are rich in historical and genealogical data. Even if your ancestor is not mentioned specifically, browsing through a gazette from the time period and location in which he lived can help you have an understanding of what life was like for him.

You might think that these gazettes are of no value to those who don’t have Australian ancestors, but they can be of great value to those doing descendancy research. With so many resources available for Australia, it might be worth your time to discover if one of your ancestors had descendants who immigrated to Australia.

Finding your ancestor in government or police records can be intriguing. Perhaps you have a petty thief in your family. Or perhaps your ancestor was assaulted while traveling to the market. Perhaps your ancestor found an abandoned baby. While these events might not provide the much sought-after dates and places, they do provide insight into their lives and perhaps give enough information to help you put together a few more pieces of your genealogy puzzle.

Wonderbase of the Week: 276 Archive CD Books Australia Databases

Wednesday, March 5th, 2008

The Wonderbase of the Week at is 276 databases from Archive CD Books Australia and contains material from Australia, New Zealand, Samoa, Tonga, Tahiti, Fiji and the Cook Islands. These databases will be added to the 100 Archive CD Books Australia databases launched last week. These collections include more directories, reference materials, family histories, military records, newspapers and court records. Click here to view the databases.

One collection, the South Australian Police Gazette 1862-67, was compiled to be distributed among the police force only. Police Gazettes contain details and information that can’t be found anywhere else. Produced at regular intervals (usually once a week), it was a way of making information available to all in the Police Force throughout the whole state.

The information contained in the Police Gazettes does vary a little from year to year, but overall there are details of any changes within the police force that are all listed (promotions, demotions, discharges, resignations, deaths). Information is also given on housebreak-ins, robberies, arson, murders, deserted seamen, warrants issued, prisoners discharged, missing friends, lost and found items and more. One can find the physical details on persons listed here, missing, wanted or released, which helps to paint a picture of them (name, aliases used, age, height, color hair, color eyes, distinguishing features, even color clothing worn). Far from being just a unique and extremely fascinating resource for local, family and social historians – they are useful for anyone with an interest in South Australia in the 1860s.

Another collection, the Victorian Government Gazette-1859, contain a vast amount of historical and genealogical information. However they are largely an untapped resource. The few complete runs that are available are usually only found in major libraries. And even for researchers who do have access to these the sheer size and extent of the Gazettes is daunting. These gazettes offer researchers much more than simply names and places. They help reconstruct events and circumstances in the life of individuals and communities.

One of the featured collections, the Cyclopedia of Fiji, Samoa, Tonga, Tahiti, Cook Islands-1907 is divided into two main sections. The first contains a cyclopedia of Fiji and the second contains smaller cyclopedias of Samoa, Tonga, Tahiti and the Cook Islands. These cyclopedias are a vast resource of historical and biographical information on the islands concerned. They are very similar to the cyclopedias for each Australian state although less comprehensive. Cyclopedias generally include information on the history, the people, the industries and trade, the culture and the geography of the island group concerned. They include hundreds of illustrations, the larger number of these being portraits of those whose biographies are included. These are not just the rich and famous, but include a high percentage of the ordinary citizens in each community.

The Archive CD Books Australia has partnered with to make these and other databases available online to a wider audience.

Archive CD Books Australia and Gould Genealogy Partner With, Inc.

Thursday, February 28th, 2008

First large genealogical collection from Australia to be online at

PROVO, UT, February 28, 2008 – Archive CD Books Australia and Gould Genealogy have partnered with, Inc. to make 344 Australian and New Zealand databases more accessible to a worldwide audience at (a service of, Inc.).

“We are delighted now to be part of’s new international focus. The benefits we see are many,” said Alan Phillips, Managing Director, Archive CD Books Australia and Gould Genealogy. “For us, it is a great way to market our content online. For, it is an opportunity to provide more significant Australian content than from any other single source. For Australian content owners, is a great avenue to get their data online. For libraries, it brings joy to those who have no love of CDs. For ‘Down Under’ researchers, it provides the best Australian and New Zealand content online. For end users overseas with Australian and New Zealand interests, at last they can have some great accessible content.”

Initially Archive CD Books Australia will provide with half of the Archive CD Books Australia product list, which includes:

1. directories
2. electoral rolls
3. government gazettes
4. police gazettes
5. war records
6. biographical volumes
7. general, church and regional histories and records
8. a starter selection for New Zealand
9. a few products on the Pacific Islands, Britain and Scotland

This initial data launch from Archive CD Books Australia will be followed during the year by data from Gould Genealogy, which will include birth, marriage, and death notices, shipping records, biographical databases, cemetery records, and obituaries.

“We are excited to partner with Archive CD Books Australia and Gould Genealogy. From our first conversation with Alan Phillips, we knew we found a great partner to collaborate with to develop a significant offering of Australian records,” said Yvette Arts, Director, Content Acquisition,, Inc.

The content databases provided by Archive CD Books Australia and Gould Genealogy comprise’s first major collections from Australia.

“A subscription is a superb value for researchers everywhere, not just to Australians and New Zealanders,” Phillips said. “I am confident that can become the number one site for quality, high value Australian and New Zealand content online. I trust our contribution will be beneficial to all.”


Media Contact
Whitney Ransom
Corporate Communications Director, Inc.

About Gould Genealogy
Gould Genealogy has been a genealogy reseller since 1976, with a current list of around 10,000 worldwide genealogy and related products. Gould Genealogy is also a publisher with publishing/marketing agreements with content owners and authors for print and CD publishing, and now online publishing with its new, Inc. partnership.

About Archive CD Books Australia
Archive CD Books Australia began in 2003, with a similar goal to all four international Archive CD Books partners – to scan and make available long out of print books, records and other resources for family and local historians – all fully searchable. Archive CD Books Australia currently has nearly 800 products, many of which have never been practically accessible to researchers before. Archive CD Books Australia has partnered with universities, libraries, archives, genealogical and historical societies, and specialist and private libraries throughout Australia. These collaborations have resulted in high-quality content for end users.

About, Inc., Inc. is a family of services that includes,, and the We’re Related application on Facebook. The focus of the company is to provide innovative tools to connect families.

Founded in 2006 by Paul Allen and several key members of the original team,, Inc. provides affordable access to genealogy databases and family history tools used by more than 600,000 monthly visitors. The site registers 9.4 million monthly pages views and has more than 25,000 subscribers. With thousands of databases–including birth, death, military, census, and parish records– makes it easy to fill in missing information in your family tree. Some of its partners include Everton Publishers, Quintin Publications, Archive CD Books Australia, Gould Genealogy, Immigrant Ships Transcribers Guild, Archive CD Books Canada, The Statue of Liberty-Ellis Island Foundation, Inc., SmallTownPapers®, Accessible Archives, Genealogical Publishing Company, Find My Past, Godfrey Memorial Library, Find A Grave, and FamilySearchâ„¢. Investors include vSpring Capital and several angel investors.

Wonderbase of the Week: 100 Databases From Archive CD Books Australia

Wednesday, February 27th, 2008

The Wonderbase of the Week at is 100 databases from Archive CD Books Australia and contains material from Australia and New Zealand. These collections include directories, reference materials, family histories, military records, newspapers and court records. Click here to view the databases. (You must be a member to access these records.)
One collection, Australia’s Fighting Sons of the Empire, is a compilation of biographies and photos of many Australian soldiers who fought in World War I. This database includes many significant details of the soldiers’ fighting life. Each entry includes a photograph along with the name of the soldier, where the soldier was born and educated, where and when he enlisted, the places he fought and where and when he came back or, if he died, where he were buried.

Another collection, Extracts from Portsmouth Records contain interesting primary source information from the Portsmouth area in the 1890s. The database contains official and governmental letters, records, accounts, charts, tables and statistics covering a range of useful information for genealogists and historians.

One of the featured collections from New Zealand is the New Zealand PO Directory. This Wise’s New Zealand Directory contains towns, alphabetical, trade and miscellaneous sections which lists the names, addresses and professions of many in New Zealand in 1900. It also includes a street guide for some of the major towns and separate directories for banking, public companies, medical, legal, ecclesiastical, educational, pastoral, municipal and government.
The Archive CD Books Australia has partnered with to make these and other databases available online to a wider audience.