Self-Indexing Register of Inward Correspondence (General ?1883-1980 and Applications for Employment ?1883-1962),Annual Single Number System
||? 1883 - 1980
||Series in Custody
||1901 - 1980
||1901 - 1980
|Format of Records:
|Agency which created this SeriesAgency which created this Series|
|Agency currently responsible for this SeriesAgency currently responsible for this Series|
|Description of this SeriesDescription of this Series|
- How to use the Records
How to Use This Series
This series should be used in conjunction with VPRS 770 Numerical Register of Inward Correspondence to retrieve correspondence in VPRS 774 Inward Registered Correspondence. An index is available to certain policy and subject files established from the 1950s (see VPRS 9709).
First identify the appropriate volume and locate an entry. There are separate volumes for applications for employment and for other general correspondence. The type of volume is identified in the Records Description List. Entries in the volumes marked Applications for Employment are arranged alphabetically by the surname of the applicant. A separate index to these volumes was also maintained (see VPRS 771). Entries in the volumes marked General are arranged according to the name of the correspondent or the subject of the correspondence. Each volume covers a span of years.
To retrieve correspondence you will need to determine the final (top) number under which the item was filed. The correspondence will have been filed under its own number or, if attached to subsequent correspondence to make a file, under the number of the last registered item on the file. This information is recorded in the column marked Attachments.
If you need to determine the volume and folio (page) which contains the full registration details consult VPRS 770.
This series was created and maintained to control inward correspondence received by the Public Service Board (VA 886). It records full details about when the correspondence was received and registered, the name of the correspondent (corporate or individual), the subject of the correspondence, referral of the correspondence to other offices and the attachment of correspondence to subsequent papers.
The volumes extant cover the period from 1901 (Volume 39) to 1980 (Volume 142). It is assumed that the series commenced with the start of the registry system, which is believed to be circa 1883. The series was superseded in 1980.
System of Arrangement and Control
Document and file level control 1883 - 1980
It is not known when the Public Service Board, established in 1883, first began registering inward correspondence. By 1889, however, a system was in place in which each item of correspondence received by the Board was registered within an annual single number system. In an annual single number system each registered item is allocated a sequential number which is prefixed or suffixed by the year of registration. The numbers commence from one at the beginning of each year. For example, the twenty-third item registered in 1895 would have been allocated the number 95/23.
In the annual single number system established by the Board a distinction was made between applications for employment in the public service and other general inward correspondence. This distinction was primarily made during the two part registration process. The first part of the registration process simply involved the allocation of the registration number. The second part of the registration process involved recording full details about when the correspondence was received and registered, the name of the correspondent (corporate or individual), the subject of the correspondence, referral of the correspondence to other offices and the attachment of correspondence to subsequent papers. Until 1962 there were always two volumes maintained simultaneously for recording full registration details: one for applications for employment (marked Applications for Employment on the spine) and one for all other correspondence (marked General on the spine). These volumes were numbered in a single sequence.
Although separate volumes were used for registration the numbers were allocated from a single sequence. This was done from the Numerical Register (VPRS 770) which comprises a list of sequential numbers against which are recorded, in two columns, the volume and folio (page) numbers of the full registration. The left hand column lists the entries in the volumes used for Applications for Employment and the right hand column list entries in the volumes used for General correspondence.
The volumes comprising this series are self-indexing. This means that the volumes are divided into sections according to predetermined categories. In the volumes used for Applications for Employment the sections are identified by letters of the alphabet (A, B, C etc.). Entries were made in these volumes under the surname of the applicant. A separate index to these volumes was also maintained (see VPRS 771). In the volumes used for General correspondence the sections are identified by the names of organisations (mostly Government departments) or subject areas. Entries were made in these volumes under the name of the correspondent or the subject of the correspondence.
The correspondence received was filed in annual single number order - see VPRS 774 Inward Registered Correspondence. If a subsequent item of correspondence related to the same matter as a previous item it was common practice of the Board to attach the items. In this way files were built up. The attached documents were then filed under the registration number of the last or top item. This practice is known as top-numbering. This series recorded the attachment of documents so that the top number could be identified and the correspondence retrieved.
By the 1950s file level control was introduced for some files. The files ceased to be top-numbered. Subsequent items attached to the files were not registered in their own right but were allocated the number by which the file was already identified. A card index (VPRS 9709) was created from this time to assist with the retrieval of these files and facilitate the attachment of new papers to them. The Index comprises two alphabetical sequences. One sequence indexes files by subjects and titles and the other sequence indexes files by names of Government departments.
Separate registration of applications for employment from 1962 to 1979
From 1962 applications for employment were registered and indexed under a separate system utilising a block of numbers (see VPRS 9708 Register of Applications for Employment and VPRS 9854 Index to Register of Applications for Employment). The block of numbers appears to have been different each year. For example, in 1962 the numbers commence from 10 000 while in 1963 the numbers commence from 20 000. It is assumed that a block of numbers was used so that the applications would be filed together in number order rather than interspersed amongst the general correspondence. From 1962 to 1980 this series comprises only the General register.
File level control from 1980
In 1980 the system of document level control ceased and a file level control system was introduced. The new system comprises Correspondence Files (VPRS 8857), File Registration and Movement Cards (VPRS 8860) and an automated file registration and indexing system known as TRACE (for outputs see VPRS 8859). The new system continues the tradition of annual single number registration.
- Function / Content
- Recordkeeping System
|More research resourcesMore research resources|
|Indexes and RegistersIndexes and Registers|
|Controlled SeriesControlled Series|
|Previous SeriesPrevious Series|
|Subsequent SeriesSubsequent Series|
|List/s of records in this seriesList/s of records in this series|
|Indexes and RegistersIndexes and Registers|
|More research resourcesMore research resources||