Transport – Immigration Records
Records held by Public Record Office Victoria (PROV) provide information about the administration of immigration to Victoria, passenger lists, and the arrival and departure of ships. The records relate to both assisted immigrants and those who came unassisted or were privately sponsored. For passenger lists created after 1923 please contact the National Archives of Australia.
For detailed information about the administration of immigration to Victoria see the following pages on PROV’s online catalogue: VF 8 Immigration - Nineteenth Century, VF 99 Immigration – Monitoring Arrivals, and VF 138 Immigration – Twentieth Century.
Inwards assisted and unassisted passenger lists have been indexed and the indexes are available online. Outward passenger lists are in the process of being indexed by PROV volunteers. The online index to outward passenger lists is updated with new entries annually. The term “unassisted” was used to describe passengers that paid their own fare, to distinguish them from passengers that migrated under sponsorship schemes, known as “assisted” passengers.
The following online database indexes provide references to microform inwards and outwards passenger lists held by PROV and genealogical collections around Australia. For detailed information about using these indexes to access microform passenger lists see PROVguide 50 Locating and Copying Ships’ Passenger Lists.
Additional online indexes
State Records New South Wales – Assisted immigrants arriving at Port Phillip, 1839-1851: www.records.nsw.gov.au/indexes/searchform.aspx?id=3
Macbeth Genealogical Services – Assisted Immigration to Victoria 1836 to 1879 Ships: www.macbeth.com.au/indexes/assimmsearch.html
Ships’ passengers lists: a select list
This register records the arrival and departure of ships at the Port of Melbourne between 1846 and 1852. Passengers are named in lists from January 1846 to October 1847.
Registers and indexes of ships
Correspondence and administrative records
VPRS 2142 Outward Letter Books to Local and Sydney (Superintendent, Port Phillip District)
To access the correspondence use VPRS 2138 Index to Inward Registered Correspondence 1839 – 1843 and VPRS 2139 Registers of Inward Correspondence 1839 – 1851
To access the correspondence use VPRS 47 Registers of Inward Correspondence 1847 – 1851
To access the correspondence use VPRS 2879 Registers of Inward Correspondence 1851 – 1852
To access this correspondence series use VPRS 1411 Index to Inward Registered Correspondence 1851 – 1962 and VPRS 1186 Registers of Inward Correspondence 1851 – 1863
PROV holds a range of records about immigration on microfiche and microfilm. These records are available in PROV reading rooms and do not have to be ordered. See PROV’s guides to Microfilm, Microfiche and Online Resources at the Victorian Archives Centre, and Microfilm, Microfiche and Online Resources at the Ballarat Archives Centre for more information.