Victorian Genealogy

Finding People and Places in Victoria, Australia.

 


Occupational Records

 

OVERVIEW

The occupation of your ancestor may be found in the following records:

 

GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES

Also see Pensioners below.


NEW SOUTH WALES COLONIAL GOVERNMENT 1788-1851

Victoria was the Port Phillip District of the colony of New South Wales from 1788 until 1851. There were two failed attempts at settlement; these were in 1803-1804 and 1826-1828. Official settlement began in 1836. The New South Wales colonial government’s responsibilities included everything now looked after by the Australian federal government and Victorian state government. The type of occupational records that are likely to be found at the colonial level include:

There were also people employed as contractors to the government and records were kept of these. Examples include:

Military forces were provided by Britain.

 

VICTORIAN COLONIAL GOVERNMENT 1851-1901

The colony of Victoria existed from separation from the colony of New South Wales in 1851 until the federation of the Australian colonies to become Australia in 1901. The Victorian colonial government’s responsibilities included everything now looked after by the Australian federal government and Victorian state government. The type of occupational records that are likely to be found at the colonial level include:

There were also people employed as contractors to the government and records were kept of these. Examples include:

Military forces were provided by Britain until 1870.

 

VICTORIAN STATE GOVERNMENT 1901-PRESENT

The state of Victoria came into existence in 1901 when it became part of the country of Australia. The state government is the middle level of government in Victoria. The responsibilities of the Victorian colonial government which were kept by the state of Victoria include everything unrelated to external powers. The responsibilities of the Victorian state government include education, railways, tramways and police. Some of these services have been privatized over the years such as the railways and tramways. The type of occupational records that are likely to be found at the state level include:

There were also people employed as contractors to the government and records were kept of these. Examples include Public Works Contractors.

 

AUSTRALIAN FEDERAL GOVERNMENT 1901-PRESENT

The country of Australia came into existence in 1901 with the federation of the Australian colonies including Victoria. The federal government is the top level of government in Victoria. The federal government took over the external powers of the colonies. The responsibilities of the Australian federal government include defence, immigration, postal, telegraph and telephone services, taxation and intelligence services. Some of these services have been privatized over the years such as telephone services. The type of occupational records that are likely to be found at the federal level include:

There were also people employed as contractors to the government and records were kept of these. Examples include:

 

MUNICIPAL EMPLOYEES

Local government in Victoria began in 1841 with local road boards. The road boards amalgamated into shires. There were also cities, boroughs and town councils and municipal districts. There has been much redrawing of municipal boundaries. In 1915 the state government forced the amalgamation of municipal entities whose rate base was too low. In 1994 the state government forced the amalgamation of many municipal entities. Municipal government officers may be found in Victorian Municipal Directories. The types of occupational records that are likely to be found in local government include:

See Municipal Officers.

 


OCCUPATIONS THAT REQUIRED REGISTRATION

There are many occupations where a person needs to be registered before they can be practised. These type of records may be found in Victorian Government Gazettes or Victorian Parliamentary Papers. See Government Publications or under Government Records. These include:

 

OCCUPATIONS THAT REQUIRE LICENSING

There are many occupations where a person needs to be licensed before they can be practised. These types of records are usually generated at the local level and may be found in local government records or local court records historically. They include:

 

OCCUPATIONS THAT HAVE TRADE ASSOCIATIONS

Many occupations have trade associations that kept records and had trade journals. The trade journals may be found in the State Library of Victoria and National Library of Australia. Trade journals have indexed into the Biographical Index at State Library of Victoria. See under Biographies.

 

APPRENTICES

PUBLIC RECORD OFFICE VICTORIA - APPRENTICESHIP RECORDS 1926-1990 (VPRS 11758, 11538)

This is a finding aid for Apprenticeship Records. The records are not online.

https://prov.vic.gov.au/explore-collection/explore-topic/professions-and-employment/apprenticeship-records-1976-1990


PASTORALISTS

Pastoralists or squatters required a pastoral license to occupy land and records were kept.

See Pastoralists.

 

MINERS

A miners' right is required before mining operations could be undertaken. Historically these also gave the right to occupy up four acres of land and needed to be renewed annually. They were obtainable from the local court. If the land held under miner's right was purchased, the miner's right needed to be surrendered and may be found in the land purchase records.

Records were kept of mining claims.

Records were kept of mining leases. These were also advertised in newspapers.

Records were kept of water right licenses.

Shareholdings in mining companies were advertised in the Victorian Government Gazettes and newspapers. In smaller mining companies many or all of the shareholders actually worked for the company.

Lists of miners who contributed to local hospitals and asylums may be found in local newspapers. These sometimes include employers.

See Court of Mines for mining disputes which may also be reported in newspapers.

See Miners.

 


FARMERS

Land was purchased from the colonial or state government and records were kept of crown grantees. Parish plans will show crown grantees.

Land was selected from the colonial or state government and records were kept of selectors, many of which did not go on to purchase the land.

Taxation records were held of landholders.

See Farmers.

 

SAWMILLERS

In order to log forestry areas licenses are required from the state government and records are kept of forestry license holders. Archived records are held by Public Record Office Victoria. These may be name searchable through the catalogue.

https://prov.vic.gov.au/

 


BUSINESSMEN AND BUSINESSWOMEN

Where business partnerships were dissolved, these may have be advertised in the Victorian Government Gazette or in local newspapers.

Shareholdings in mining companies were advertised in the Victorian Government Gazettes and newspapers. In smaller mining companies many or all of the shareholders actually worked for the company.

Company registers and registration files are held by the government.

Trademark registers and registration files are held by the government.

See Business Records.

 

PENSIONERS

 

RETIRED PUBLIC SERVANTS

Records were kept of retired public servants who were receiving pension payments. See Governments.

 

INVALID AND OLD AGE PENSIONERS

In 1900 legislation was enacted in Victoria for the payment of old age pensions. In 1908 legislation was enacted in Australia for the payment of invalid and old age pensions. Applications were made through the local courts and records were kept of pension claims and pension recipients. See Court Records.

 

 

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