Author: Public Record Office Victoria

What are 'Body Cards'?

This series, named ‘Body Cards’ after the cardboard files contained within, include records of deaths reported to the Melbourne Coroner’s Court between 1959 and 1985. 

Deaths reported to the Melbourne Coroner’s Court included unexpected, unnatural, or violent deaths, deaths in care or custody, and when the identity of the person was unknown.  


What can I find in these files?

Records within the series contain all of the supporting documentation used by a coroner when investigating reported deaths, including:

  • the Victorian Police report of the death
  • an autopsy report as conducted by the Coroner's Court 
  • an affidavit and/or other statements of identification
  • a copy of the body admission sheet
  • correspondence from next of kin, solicitors and others (if received)
  • copies of drug analysis, carbon monoxide or blood alcohol reports (when appropriate)
  • medical deposition from a treating doctor in a hospital and ambulance admission sheet.


Search the index

A new index to this series is now available online enabling you to search files for viewing at the Victorian Archives Centre.

Search the online index here.

Material in the Public Record Office Victoria archival collection contains words and descriptions that reflect attitudes and government policies at different times which may be insensitive and upsetting

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples should be aware the collection and website may contain images, voices and names of deceased persons.

PROV provides advice to researchers wishing to access, publish or re-use records about Aboriginal Peoples