Records Information – Ballarat Archives Centre Records
Public Record Office Victoria (PROV) was established in 1973 as Victoria’s archival authority. It is responsible for the preservation of public records that are considered worthy of permanent retention as evidence of government policy and activity. Public records are created by government departments and authorities, the State’s courts, municipalities, schools, public hospitals and other public offices. They have value for historical, genealogical or other research, and document the status, rights and entitlements of the people of Victoria.
The Ballarat Archives Centre (BAC) holds a selection of records created by government offices located in the Central Highlands and parts of the Grampians and Wimmera regions of Victoria. These include local government, court and mining records. Other records relating to the region along with the bulk of PROV’s holdings are held at the Victorian Archives Centre.
Records held at BAC can be ordered on PROV’s online catalogue: www.access.prov.vic.gov.au , and in person in the BAC Reading Room. Please note: records can be ordered for viewing in the Reading Room of the repository at which they are held. For example, records held at the Victorian Archives Centre cannot be ordered for viewing at the Ballarat Archives Centre. For information on BAC Reading Room Services and ordering records please consult the following guides:
Below is a select list of some of the most commonly used types of records held at Ballarat. Further information about these and other records held at BAC can be found on PROV’s online catalogue.
Records created by municipalities and shires, held at BAC include rate and valuation records, letter books, minute books, contract registers and inwards and outwards correspondence. The following are some examples. These records can be ordered for viewing at BAC via PROV’s online catalogue:
Rate and Valuation Records
Buildings and Works
BAC holds a selection of records from the following court jurisdictions; Courts of Petty Sessions, the Supreme Court, the County Court, Courts of Mines, Liquor Licensing Courts and the Children’s Court. Some examples of records are:
Crown Lands and Survey
BAC holds some records created by the Crown Lands and Survey Offices located in the region. These include registers of land sales, registers of leases and town and allotment survey plans. Researchers are advised however that most land records held by PROV are located at the Victorian Archives Centre. For more information please consult PROVguide 55 Land Records.
The following are some examples of Crown land and Survey records held at BAC:
Land Sales and Leases
Records documenting the administration of mining, held at BAC include registers of residence areas, registers of claims, Courts of Mines records, registers of applications for mining leases, surveyor’s field books, registers of surveys and correspondence. Some examples are:
Please note that PROV does not hold miners rights and licenses. Records about mining in the Central Highlands region are also held at the Victorian Archives Centre.
Computer indexes and microform copies of frequently used records and indexes can be found in the BAC Reading Room. Amongst these are the Victorian Index to Births, Deaths and Marriages, the Victorian Inquest Index and the Victorian Probate Index.
A range of records and research resources are available on microfilm and microfiche in the BAC Reading Room, and do not have to be ordered for viewing. These include indexes relating to the Ballarat region.