Last updated:

October 7, 2021

What do I need to know?

The most useful records for researching employees of Melbourne's trams and government buses can be found using the date range search below. These are generally records that relate to the whole tram and government bus system.

Under the About These Records heading, below the date range search, is a listing of other records relating to specific places, aspects of employment, or a limited time period only. Some of these records may not be primarily employment records, but are records where information about employees may be found as part of files relating to a broader range of subjects.

Some recent employee records may be closed to public access if they divulge personal information and could be closed for up to 75 years from the time they were created.

How do I search?

To search for records that relate to Melbourne-wide tram and government bus employment, enter a relevant year date ranges to browse records that we hold relating to employment, staffing and contractors for that time. Alternately, you can also browse all records that we have identified as being most useful for researching tram and government bus employees by searching without entering any dates.

On the search results page, use the filter toggle arrows to the left of the page to narrow the results either by series or government department that created the records.

About these records

Various Victorian government departments and agencies have been responsible for trams and buses. Some of the records they created relate to people who worked for tram and bus operations that were run by government. The above search generally covers the whole of the Melbourne and metropolitan tram and government bus system.

The following is a list of records that relate only to specific places, aspects of employment, or a limited time period only that may also be useful for researching tram and bus employees.

VPRS 3599 Wages Book (1902–1918) – Ballarat Tramways (VA 747)
Wage records of Ballarat tramways employees (1902–1918).

VPRS 7860 General Subject Files (1914–1920) – Hawthorn Tramways Trust (VA 2978)
These are not specifically records about employment, they are files on a range of topics, but by browsing through them there are some references to employees of the Hawthorn tramways (1914–1920).

VPRS 7796 General Subject Files (1916–1920) – Melbourne, Brunswick and Coburg Tramways Trust (VA 2971)

These are not specifically records about employment, they are files on a range of topics, but by browsing through them there are some references to employees of the Melbourne, Brunswick and Coburg tramways (1914–1920).

VPRS 7922 Employees Service Register: Northern System (1916–1922) –  Melbourne, Brunswick and Coburg Tramways Trust (VA 2971)
Records of employees working in the northern part of the Melbourne tramway system (1916–1922).

VPRS 7815 Employee Record Book: Northern Engine Houses (1901–c.1942)
Relating to northern suburb lines, such as those running through Richmond, Brunswick, Carlton, Fitzroy and Northcote.

Who created these records?

Trams and buses in Victoria have been operated by a number of different agencies over the years. PROV does not hold records for all of these agencies relating to employment and staff, but it does for the following:

  • Melbourne Tramway and Omnibus Company Limited, 1877-1919 (VA 2976)
  • Ballarat Tramways, 1887-1934 (VA 747)
  • Hawthorn Tramways Trust, 1914-1920 (VA 2978)
  • Melbourne, Brunswick and Coburg Tramways Trust, 1914-1920 (VA 2971)
  • Tramway Board, 1916-1919 (VA 2693)
  • Melbourne and Metropolitan Tramways Board, 1919-1983 (VA 2694)
  • Public Transport Corporation, 1989-2003 (VA 2984)

Next Steps

Order the records of interest and view in our Reading Room. Some records are digital records and can be accessed directly online. 

What are in these records?

The kinds of records that you may find relating to employees and staff working in trams and buses operated by the Victorian Government:

  • staff/employee registers or personal summaries
  • wages or earnings books
  • accreditation/licencing records

TIP:

There may be some digitised images relating to your search results, to see these at the top of your search results select the Digital option in the View Record filter toggle arrows on the left of the screen. You can also use these to explore only results from particular series or created by particular agencies.