Series VPRS 1186
Register of Inward Correspondence I
About this Series Related Series Accessing the records in this Series
Date Range: Series 1851 - 1864
  Series in Custody 1851 - 1863
  Contents 1851 - 1863
Public Access: Open
Location: North Melbourne
Format of Records: Physical
 
Agency which created this SeriesAgency which created this Series
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Date Range Agency Title Agency Number
1851 - 1855 Colonial Secretary's Office VA 856
1855 - 1864 Chief Secretary's Department VA 475
Agency currently responsible for this SeriesAgency currently responsible for this Series
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Date Range Agency Title Agency Number
1979 - 1992 Ministry for Police and Emergency Services VA 421
Description of this SeriesDescription of this Series
  • How to use the Records
    Consult VPRS 1411 Index to Inward Registered Correspondence. Note the registration numbers of the items of correspondence relevant to your research.

    Consult the Register of Inward Correspondence to identify the final location of the correspondence i.e. the registration numbers of the most recent letter under which the correspondence was filed.

    Consult the Records Description List and note the number of the unit containing the correspondence.

    Because some of the correspondence in this series was rearranged, it may be necessary to search under the number of the earliest letter within a top numbered sequence if you are unable to locate the correspondence under the registration number of the last letter in the sequence.

  • Function / Content
    This series consists of registers of inward correspondence received by the Colonial/Chief Secretarys Department.

    These registers were used to allocate unique identification numbers (registration numbers) to each letter received and to record summary details regarding the management of the correspondence. Each inward letter was, on receipt, allocated an annual single number from the register, that is, a sequential number prefixed by the last two digits of the year, with the numbering sequence recommencing at 1 at the start of each year.

    e.g. the one-hundred and twentythird letter received in 1851 was given the number 51/123.

    The registers record in a column format:

    the registration number, with the registration number of any related previous correspondence.
    the day and month received
    the name/position and address of sender
    the date sent
    precis of letter
    (sometimes) date answered
    the registration number of related outward correspondence
    the last two columns on the right hand side of the folio record how dealt with i.e. to which official the letter was referred for action, date referred to official and when returned.

    The right hand columns which were subsequently headed see later letter record the registration number of any related subsequent correspondence. After 1853 this column is titled Result of Application and after 1858 How Disposed Of.

    A later registration number written in the right-hand column indicates that the letter was top-numbered. Items of correspondence regarding the same business were placed together in registration number order with the most recent item being placed on top of items received previously. The file thus created was put away under the number of the most recent item of correspondence.

    With the introduction of subject classifications for filing of correspondence, the subject classification was written in this column indicating where the letter had been filed. After 1852 all letters received an abbreviated subject classification. Such abbreviations include:

    CA = Colonial Architect
    CAG = Colonial Agent General
    ELECT = Electoral
    MC = Municipal Corps
    MED = Medical
    MISC = Miscellaneous
    MISC.E = Miscellaneous Emigration
    OC = Other Colonies
    PMG = Post Master General
    POLICE = Police
    PP/PRIV PERS = Persons
    SHER = Sheriff
    STORES = Stores

    Each register was identified by the year of use. Alternate registers were introduced in 1852 and identified within a year by an alphabetical symbol.

  • Recordkeeping System
    The recordkeeping system consists of the following series:

    VPRS 1189 Inward Registered Correspondence I
    VPRS 1186 Register of Inward Correspondence I
    VPRS 1411 Index to Inward Registered Correspondence
    VPRS 1187 Outward Letter Books
    VPRS 1188 Index to Outward Correspondence

    On receipt items of inward correspondence were registered in VPRS 1186. Each item was allocated an annual single number registration. e.g. B1857/4279 which indicated that the letter was registered in Register B in 1857 and was the 4279th letter received in that year.

    The registration number was written on the letter. Each letter was placed in a docket, and transmitted to the Chief Secretary for attention. The registration number, the date of the letter, the date of registration, the name of the sender and a precis of the letter were recorded on the docket.

    While the letter was with the Chief Secretary it was indexed from the register entry in VPRS 1186 to aid future retrieval. Alternate registers were used within the year, each distinguished by an alpha identifier. The register used on the first day would be handed to the indexing clerk for the entries to be indexed on the following day while the alternate register was being used to register incoming mail. Correspondence was indexed alphabetically by correspondent and by subject or function (e.g. botanic and scientific) in VPRS 1411 Index to Inward Registered Correspondence. The index entries summarise the correspondence and record the inward correspondence registration number.

    The Chief Secretary annotated the docket to indicate his decision and instruction and the correspondence was returned to the registry.

    A reply was drafted and a copy was handwritten into a letter book, see VPRS 1187 Outward Letter Books. Each outward letter was registered within the letter book by the allocation of a single number which was recorded on the docket together with a cross reference to the inward correspondence.

    The outward letters were indexed in VPRS 1188 Index to Outward Correspondence. Index entries refer to folio numbers in the Outward Letter Book and provide cross references to the registration numbers of the related inward correspondence.

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Indexes and RegistersIndexes and Registers
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Date Range Series Title Series Number
Controlled SeriesControlled Series
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Date Range Series Title Series Number
1851 - 1863 Inward Registered Correspondence I VPRS 1189
1851 - 1863 Supplementary Inward Registered Correspondence VPRS 1226
1852 - 1863 Petitions VPRS 1192
Previous SeriesPrevious Series
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Transfer Date Series Title Series Number
0 - 1864 Register Of Addresses Referred To The Chief Secretary By The Legislative Council VPRS 2812
0 - 1864 Register Of Addresses Referred To The Chief Secretary By The Legislative Assembly VPRS 2872
1847 - 1851 Registers of Inward Correspondence [Refer to Microfilm Copy VPRS 2139] VPRS 18
- 1852 Registers of Inward Correspondence II [Land Branch] VPRS 2879
Subsequent SeriesSubsequent Series
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Transfer Date Series Title Series Number
0 - 1856 Register Of Addresses Referred To The Chief Secretary By The Legislative Council VPRS 2812
0 - 1856 Register Of Addresses Referred To The Chief Secretary By The Legislative Assembly VPRS 2872
- 1864 Register of Inward Correspondence II VPRS 3993
List/s of records in this seriesList/s of records in this series
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Consignment Number Contents Date Range Public Access No. of Units
P0000 1851 - 1863 Open 53
Indexes and RegistersIndexes and Registers
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Date Range Series Title Series Number
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    PROVguide052 Immigration Records