Series VPRS 3183
Town Clerk's Correspondence Files II [MCC Series 120]
About this Series Related Series Accessing the records in this Series
Date Range: Series 1910 - 1985
  Series in Custody ? 1910 - 1985
  Contents ? 1901 - 1997
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
1910 - 1985 Melbourne (Town 1842-1847; City 1847-ct) VA 511
Agency currently responsible for this SeriesAgency currently responsible for this Series
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Date Range Agency Title Agency Number
1910 - cont Melbourne (Town 1842-1847; City 1847-ct) VA 511
Description of this SeriesDescription of this Series
  • How to use the Records
    Period 1913 to 1983
    Researchers should first consult VPRS 8904 Subject Index to Town Clerk's Correspondence Files. Researchers should also be aware that the Subject Index begins in 1913.

    The Subject Index is arranged alphabetically by subject heading although each alphabetical division begins with a miscellaneous section (ie A miscellaneous is followed by Abattoirs; B miscellaneous is followed by Bridges etc). If a subject heading does not exist for the matter you are interested in check the miscellaneous section. For instance, if you were interested in clocks, look under C miscellaneous.

    Note down any references to letters you may be interested in. These references will be in the form of an annual single number which was allocated to each particular piece of inward correspondence.

    Using the references noted researchers should then consult VPRS 8907 Town Clerk's Register of Inward Correspondence for the year in which the correspondence was received.

    At the back or at the front of each volume is an index to correspondence numbers. Using the numbers found in VPRS 8904 scan the index to locate the correspondence number you require. Listed next to that number is the relevant page number for that number (eg letter registered 1234 may be found on page 40). Turn to the page number indicated and locate the number you require.

    Researchers should pay special attention to the column marked subsequent. If there is no entry in that column then the correspondence should have been filed under that number. If this is the case then scan the consignment details to identify the unit number of the item of interest.

    If there is an entry in the subsequent column then it is important to follow the chain of correspondence until no subsequent number is listed as correspondence was filed under its final or last registration number. Having followed the chain of correspondence and identified the last registration number under which the correspondence was filed the researcher should identify the unit in the consignment details which corresponds with the registration number of the last letter within a top-numbered sequence.

    Researchers should also note that the P0000 consignment of this series has been rearranged into subject headings. To access these records consult the consignment details until you identify the subject you are interested in.

    It may be worthwhile for researchers to check the box where the file should be located as some files were retrieved while the records were being processed and although returned to their correct position in the sequence they were not recorded in the consignment details.

    1984 to 1985

    Use VPRS 17049 Subject/Proper Name/Street Name Index to Correspondence Files to get the file registration number.

  • Function / Content
    This series contains inward (and in most cases copies of outward) correspondence received by the Town Clerk's Office of the City of Melbourne from 1910 to 1985.

    The Town Clerk's original duties as set out in the Melbourne Incorporation Act 1842 (6 Vic, No.7) were to perambulate boundaries in conjunction with the Mayor every three years and be responsible for ascertaining any alterations to property boundaries; updating Burgess List including making copies available for each ward, for those copies to be displayed and arranging lists of people who wished to be included on the Burgess list and those who object to their inclusion; and countersigning any council notices displayed in public areas such as council vacancies.

    From these original duties the role of the Town Clerk has grown to such an extent that the office is now considered to be the administrative centre of the council.

  • Recordkeeping System
    Each inward letter was, on receipt and registration, given a distinctive number for identification. This consisted of an annual single number, that is a sequential number prefixed by the last two numbers of the year registered recommencing at 1 at the start of each year. Thus the seventy-fifth item received in 1942 was given the number 42/75.

    Each letter had a cover sheet attached to the front on which a precis of the letter and the registration number allocated was noted. From 1946 onwards the registration number also includes the page number where the entry appears in the letter register (VPRS 8907). Any comments or notes by the action officer are also noted on the file cover. A copy of the minute from the council meeting should be glued to the file cover if the subject of the file was raised at a council meeting.

    Top-Numbering of Inward Correspondence

    This practice led to the grouping together of items of inward correspondence which referred to the same subject to create comprehensive files. The method adopted was that of placing earlier correspondence under later ones. Thus if there were a later letter registered 46/1203 on the same transaction as 46/202, that earlier letter would be filed with the later one and there would in fact be no correspondence filed under 46/202.

    The registration number of any previous or subsequent correspondence is noted in the previous and subsequent columns of the register (VPRS 8907). In the Subject Index (VPRS 8904) the previous correspondence number is noted and marked in red ink.

    Related Records

    The Notice Papers for Proceedings of the Council of the City of Melbourne (VPRS 8913) contain references to Town Clerk's files if the file contains information on matters raised at council meetings. This system begins in 1916 and until the 1970's relevant files are indicated in the left hand margin. In the early 1970's all of the text was printed including the file references, which appear on the top right hand side of the item to be discussed. Researchers should note that the Town Clerk files will include any relevant details if the matter was raised at a council meeting.

    Previous Series

    The previous series to this series is VPRS 3181, Town Clerks Correspondence Files I.

    This series is arranged by subject heading, but was initially registered using the subject heading and an annual single number allocated from registers (VPRS 4026).

    A docket was attached to the front of each letter detailing the name of the correspondent, date letter was received and the number allocated from the register.

    At a later date dockets on the same subject were grouped together to form subject files.

    Researchers wishing to use this series may find access easier by using the consignment details which lists all the subject headings alphabetically and the date ranges of the subject files.

    Subsequent Series

    This series (VPRS 3183) ended in 1985. For subsequent series refer to VPRS 17019 Corporate Services Correspondence Files, Annual Single Number System.

    A correspondence register was maintained. The register was in book format in 1983 and in card format from 1984 to 1989.

    Card indexes to the correspondence were created and were divided into three categories: subjects, street names and proper names.

    Material contained on files generally cover one year. However, some files span a number of years, e.g. Tennis Centre.

    The practice of top-numbering files was discontinued with the advent of this new record keeping system.

    P0000 Consignment

    The P0000 consignment of this series which was originally transferred to the PROV in 1980 includes Town Clerk's files and Lord Mayor's Function and Fundraising files.

    P0011 consignment
    The P11 consignment of this series contains correspondence items incorporated into bound volumes of yearly statements of accounts and other financial records.

More research resourcesMore research resources
    PROVguide064 City of Melbourne
Indexes and RegistersIndexes and Registers
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Date Range Series Title Series Number
1910 - 1910 Town Clerk's Inwards Correspondence Register VPRS 4026
1910 - 1982 Town Clerk's Register of Inward Correspondence VPRS 8907
1913 - 1982 Subject Index to Town Clerk's Correspondence Files VPRS 8904
1984 - 1985 Subject / Proper Name / Street Name Index to Correspondence Files VPRS 17049
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
- 1910 Town Clerk's Files, Series I VPRS 3181
- 1978 Town Clerk's Outward Letter Books VPRS 4025
Subsequent SeriesSubsequent Series
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Transfer Date Series Title Series Number
0 - Circa 1985 Corporate Services Correspondence Files, Annual Single Number System VPRS 17019
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 ? 1901 - ? 1948 Open 240
P0001 1910 - 1919 Open 322
P0002 1920 - 1925 Open 90
P0003 1926 - 1946 Open 770
P0004 1947 - 1954 Open 141
P0005 1955 - 1960 Open 167
P0006 1961 - 1966 Open 241
P0007 1967 - 1971 Open 232
P0008 1972 - 1976 Open 256
P0009 1977 - 1979 Open 244
P0010 1980 - 1982 Open 297
P0011 1971 - 1980 Open 9
P0012 1970 - 1988 Open 142
P0013 1932 - 1997 Open 249
Indexes and RegistersIndexes and Registers
Display entries per page
Date Range Series Title Series Number
1910 - 1910 Town Clerk's Inwards Correspondence Register VPRS 4026
1910 - 1982 Town Clerk's Register of Inward Correspondence VPRS 8907
1913 - 1982 Subject Index to Town Clerk's Correspondence Files VPRS 8904
1984 - 1985 Subject / Proper Name / Street Name Index to Correspondence Files VPRS 17049
More research resourcesMore research resources
    PROVguide064 City of Melbourne