Series VPRS 17684
Photographic Collection, Master Negatives and Digitised Images
About this Series Related Series Accessing the records in this Series
Date Range: Series 1913 - 1995
  Series in Custody 1913 - 1995
  Contents 1913 - 1973
Public Access: Open
Location: North Melbourne
Format of Records: Physical/Digital
 
Agency which created this SeriesAgency which created this Series
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Date Range Agency Title Agency Number
1913 - 1983 Country Roads Board VA 722
1983 - 1989 Road Construction Authority VA 1054
1989 - cont Roads Corporation (also known as VicRoads) VA 2982
Agency currently responsible for this SeriesAgency currently responsible for this Series
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Date Range Agency Title Agency Number
1989 - cont Roads Corporation (also known as VicRoads) VA 2982
Description of this SeriesDescription of this Series
  • How to use the Records
    This series consists of physical negatives which are black and white and then colour from the 1960s and are in various sizes; and their associated digital images. The negatives were created by the Photographic Services Section of Country Roads Board (VA 722) and its successor agencies

    The physical negatives are identified by registration number only and researchers will be required to consult VPRS 17690 Photographic Negative Registers to identify images of interest. The registers (VPRS 17690) provide a brief explanation of the image and give the registration number, which should be used to order records from this series.

    Digital images have some descriptive information associated with them and can be identified by either consulting the list of records in that consignment or by conducting a keyword search (for example, searching on a location or name of road). Note that the details recorded against image vary so keyword search may not return all potential images of interest.

    Note that the images are high resolution, hence file sizes are large and may take some time to download.

    As of February 2017 digitised images are being added progressively to this series and will continue to be for some time.

    Researchers should note that not all physical negatives have been imaged and there may be some images for which the physical negative has not been transferred.

    Note: Negatives in the P0005 Consignment may not be in sequential order, in particular there is an overlap of sequential numbers in units 4 and 5. If you require records from this sequence please order both units. Please consult the consignment details to determine which unit contains the range of negatives for the period in which you are interested.

  • Function / Content
    This series consists of the photographic collection managed by the Photographic Services Section of the Country Roads Board (CRB) (VA 722) and their successor agencies, Road Construction Authority (1983-1989) (VA 1054) and the Roads Corporation, also known as VicRoads (1989-ct) VA 2982.

    When the CRB was established in 1913, its "first duty [was] to make a thorough investigation into existing highways, so that it may have the materials on which to exercise sound judgment [to identify which roads were to be declared main roads and brought under the provisions of the Country Roads Act 1912]" (Country Roads Board, First annual report, 1914, p. 9). In order to effectively complete its first duty and survey and document the condition of roads throughout the state of Victoria, the CRB established a Photographic Services Section within the agency to collect and manage photographs taken during the surveying and investigation process which took approximately two years to complete.

    After completing its initial survey, the CRB Photographic Services Section continued to operate throughout the 1900s and developed a substantial collection of images that focussed on the construction of roads and bridges as well as plant and supply equipment and engineering techniques. From the 1950s the CRB Photographic Section began collating photographs of CRB staff and road workers and then from the 1970s branched out into managing photographs related to road safety campaigns.

    Overall, this series of photographic images represents the development of road infrastructure; captures the engineering technologies, materials and machinery utilised to develop road networks; features staff and workers who contributed to the improvement of Victoria's roads as well as documents the implementation of road safety awareness into Victorian society.

    The photographs in this series were taken by a variety of in-house photographers. Many images in this series were utilised by the CRB and its successor agencies within annual reports, educational and marketing documentation and were also used in the preparation of technical and general interest publications, for exhibition at public displays, and for use by news organisations (Country Roads Board Victoria Fifty-ninth annual report, 1972, p. 39).

    The series is made up of both master hard copy photographic negatives which are black and white and then colour from the 1960s and are in various sizes; and digitised photographic images.

    In the 2000s, Roads Corporation (VicRoads), the successor agency to CRB began digitising the negative collection to improve accessibility and ensure preservation. The digitisation process involved digitally scanning and converting the original hardcopy negatives into positive processed digital photographs. As a time of writing, February 2017, digital copies of the negatives are being added progressively to the series and are being made available online. These records are accessible from the P0003 consignment.

    The information recorded for each digital image may include:
    - Title (which may include a location, the name of a road or the type of work being completed)
    - Date (defaulting to 1st Jan if year only recorded)
    - Subject (which may include a location or other reference, such as the name of a road)
    - Caption (where recorded)
    - Negative number
    - Other reference number(s) used by the agency over time

    To view these records researchers can keyword search or browse. Researchers should note these files are large and may take some time to download.

  • Recordkeeping System
    Images are arranged in an annual numbering system. The first number represents the year in which the photograph was taken and the following number is a sequential negative number. For example, 14/25 is negative image number 25 taken during 1914.

    Note that in some cases, the year number on the negative can be from the previous year. This is because the Photographic Services Section allocated yearly negative number sequences in advance that were not always used up by the end of the year and hence were used in the subsequent year.
    Descriptive information was maintained for the digitised images in an image management database called IMAGIC. The database has not been transferred but the descriptive information has been transferred for each image.

    In regards to the digital consignment, P0003, the item number refers to the negative number. For example, 18_00029. The title is the title given to the photograph by the agency at the time the photograph was taken. Other information may include the location or name of the road (e.g. Point Nepean Road) and the type of works being completed (e.g. Gisborne Road : works erected to prevent erosion to banks). Sometimes a caption has been recorded. The date refers to when the photograph was taken. For images where no date was recorded and only the year was known, a default date of Jan 1 for that year has been used.

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Indexes and RegistersIndexes and Registers
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Date Range Series Title Series Number
1913 - 1995 Photographic Negative Register VPRS 17690
Controlled SeriesControlled Series
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Date Range Series Title Series Number
Previous SeriesPrevious Series
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Transfer Date Series Title Series Number
Subsequent SeriesSubsequent Series
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Transfer Date Series Title Series Number
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
P0001 1913 - 1962 Open 74
P0002 1962 - 1964 Open 17
P0003 1913 - Open N/A
P0004 1965 - 1969 Open 15
P0005 1970 - 1971 Open 6
P0006 1972 - 1973 Open 4
Indexes and RegistersIndexes and Registers
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Date Range Series Title Series Number
1913 - 1995 Photographic Negative Register VPRS 17690
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