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Colonial Office records, 1714-1951 [microform] / as filmed by the AJCP
Bib ID 7792203
Format ManuscriptManuscript, MicroformMicroform, OnlineOnline
Online Versions
Related Online
Description Canberra : Australian Joint Copying Project, [19--] 
<> microfilm reels ; 35 mm. 

Australian Joint Copying Project part 2.


As the department chiefly responsible for the administration of the Australian colonies and for the formulation of imperial policy, the Colonial Office has been the colossus bestriding the filming programme of the Australian Joint Copying Project. Colonial affairs in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries were the responsibility successively of the Board of Trade and the Home Office. They were transferred in 1801 from the Home Office to the Secretary of State for War and Colonies. (The War Office was separated from the Colonial Office in 1854.) The Colonial Office was responsible for the administration of the Crown colonies and for communications between Britain and self-governing colonies, and its records therefore contain an enormous amount of information on the six Australian colonies, New Zealand, New Guinea and Fiji. Until the colonies became self-governing in the 1850 s almost total power was exercised by the Governors. Their despatches dealing with all aspects of colonial life make up the main series of records. Of most importance are the Enclosures accompanying each despatch - statistical returns, reports of officials, letters and petitions from private individuals and newspaper and other printed items, many of which have marginal annotations made by departmental officials. As most of the Colonial Office classes relate to specific colonies they have been filmed comprehensively. In this respect the Colonial Office copying has differed from that of most of the other record groups. The Class and Piece List to the Colonial Office material is based on selections from volume 36 of the PRO Lists and Indexes entitled List of Colonial Office Records marked up with reel numbers from the sets held by the AJCP partners. As with other record groups it is intended to take description of the material to the level of individual reels and individual pieces or volumes, and correlate the two. It should be used in conjunction with standard reference works such as the Guide to the Contents of the Public Record Office and Pugh's Records of the Colonial and Dominions Offices. The user will probably be familiar with the PRO Lists and Indexes and their re-issue by the Kraus Reprint Corporation. Less well known but with more specific application to Colonial Office material are unpublished guides such as M.E. Deane's typescript Index to CO 201/146-9, 159, 160, 170, 180, 190, 199, 208, 217, and 237, completed in 1929/30, and the guide compiled in the Mitchell Library. In addition to records described in the Handbook, further classes of Colonial Office material which have been filmed under other arrangements (whether by the PRO itself or a consortium) are held by libraries throughout Australia.


National Library of Australia holds microfilm master.

Filmed as part of the Australian Joint Copying Project by the National Library of Australia and the Library of New South Wales.

Public Record Office C.O. 1-6089 (various, not sequential)

Also available online

Original held by Public Record Office, London.

Cited In

Australian Joint Copying Project handbook. Part 2 : Colonial Office.

Subjects Australia -- History -- Sources.  |  New Zealand -- History -- Sources.
Time Coverage 1714, 1951 
Other authors/contributors Australian Joint Copying Project  |  National Library of Australia  |  Library of New South Wales  |  Great Britain. Public Record Office

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Collect from: Main Reading Room - Newspapers and Family History
Call Number: mfm PRO 1-5950 (Various)
Status: Available
Details Collect From
mfm PRO 1-5950 (Various) Main Reading Room - Newspapers and Family History

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