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We hold historic records from many local governments, but none in as much quantity and diversity as those from the City of Melbourne council.
Scroll below to see a number of record collections about the City of Melbourne.
The earliest records are from 1841, and cover a number of areas including electricity supply, the construction of buildings, and licenses to brew alcohol. After the establishment of a Colony-wide Parliament (‘responsible government’) in 1856, the Melbourne Council assumed the roles we are familiar with today: rates, roads and rubbish; as well as parks, public art, real estate, markets and working with the diverse range of people and businesses that make up a major world city.
What do I need to know before I start?
- If you are looking for an individual it is very useful to know their address in the city
- If you are researching a business, address and dates of operation are important
The boundaries of the City of Melbourne changed several times in the nineteenth century, covering parts of inner-city suburbs Collingwood, Fitzroy, Richmond, South Melbourne and St Kilda. You may need to look at the records of these municipalities as well. The State Library of Victoria has digitised a set of early Sands and MacDougall maps of Melbourne that show the Council boundary. You can find a link to this map on the right under Researcher resources.
View online or at the Reading Room?
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