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What do I need to know?

  • The name of the local government/council authority
  • Minutes of meetings are arranged in chronological order by year, then date of meeting.
  • Correspondence was often arranged by year, then date.

Council areas change. Look under the former name for that council if you’re looking for older council records.

How do I search?

  • Start typing the name of the council, municipality or town in the menu below and make the selection you want.
  • The records were catalogued as council minutes, minute books or general correspondence. Sometimes there can be a series titled Outward Letter Books, which contains outward correspondence. 
  • Next, type in the year you want. 
  • Records were often catalogued within a year range, for e.g. 1875-1877 so try years above or below the date you're looking for.

About these records

Council minutes and correspondence document the activities of local authorities. They reflect the wide range of matters councils have responsibility for, and are a rich source of information about the history of local government areas, and their corresponding suburbs.

Please note: Regional archive centres at Ballarat, Beechworth, Bendigo and Geelong each have collections of council records, you can order them from this website.

Who created these records?

Each local council created records. In the early 1990s there were over 200 local government areas.  These were consolidated to just under 80 councils which we have today.

What are in these records?

These records can cover a variety of matters for which local authorities are responsible for:

  • Road and traffic regulation
  • Building construction
  • Public Health
  • Drainage
  • Sanitation
  • Town planning
  • Property valuation
  • Environmental protection and planning
  • Social services

Records created by council committees and Roads Boards', including reports and minutes, can also be located within our collection.

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