Indexes to historical records & other sources for genealogy
This site uses terms that appear in historical records. No offence is intended.
I index historical records (especially unusual sources that are superb for genealogical problem solving) and I list the names on this website. It has about 70,000 names of people who were in Queensland, other parts of Australia and overseas. In 2023/2024 I'll continue some of the projects listed below. I may also add 20,000 names from a new index to pre-1900 Queensland records that very few family historians have ever used.
Links below lead to lists of names and many source descriptions. Each page with names explains how to get copies of the original documents.
You can also search my entire site (more than 140 pages) by entering a word in the search box (opens in a new window).
My indexes to original historical records
For many of the tens of thousands of names in this category, there's a new service that makes it easier for you to check whether the document that I indexed could be for the person you're researching (rather than someone else with the same name). This service currently costs between $2 and $8 (but that's subject to change). On the page for each index, under 'Research / Copying Service' or similar, the new service (if it's available) will have a heading in bold RED font. If that doesn't appear below the list of names that interests you, check again later this year.
- Hospital admission registers. Often more accurate and more useful than certificates. Sometimes the only surviving source of immigration details. Lots of biographical data for local, interstate and overseas folk.
- 'Illegitimate Index'. Names of mothers and children for whom there is a historical document that names the child's biological father. More names added 11 Nov 2023.
- 'Interim Index'. Selected names (men, women and children) from many sources (Court, police, school and land records; depositions; etc.) Future additions will include more records about the work, experiences and domestic life of women (married or single) in Queensland in the 1800s and 1900s. More names added 12 Nov 2023.
- Insanity and Unsound Mind. I've indexed 60 series of records in which I've found information about people of unsound mind. Some (but not all) were in mental asylums (often only for a few weeks). A huge combined list (over 20,000 names) is now online! The index includes people who 'vanished' and patients with depression, head injury, epilepsy, alcoholism, congenital defects etc. Some records also have superb details about patient's relatives. More names added 25 Nov 2023.
- Old age pension records. Applicants granted a pension, and some who were rejected for being under age or other reasons. Gives place of residence for many people who were not on electoral rolls.
- Photos and sketches of people. These images are in historical documents that also have biographical or other details.
- Neglected Children, plus orphans for whom I found information in sources other than orphanage records. Many children were sent to an orphanage when at least one parent was still alive. More names added Sep 2023.
- Missing Friends records. People sought (for many reasons) by relatives or friends; runaway children; eloping daughters; wife/child deserters; absconders from reformatories or from employment; missing beneficiaries of wills; suspected bigamists; etc. The records have historical background, biographical details and/or physical descriptions. Most give the enquirer's name/address, and many say when/where the subject was found or last seen. Superb for family history!
- Police station watchhouse records. People arrested (and sometimes physical descriptions) and names of some victims of crime.
- Maintenance payments to deserted wives and children.
- People who travelled interstate or overseas for work or other reasons, 1920s to 1950s. These files may provide clues about someone who 'disappeared'.
- Women's applications to protect their earnings from their husband. More names added Oct 2023.
- Police Gazettes. Friends and relatives sought, missing persons, alleged offenders, prisoners, wife/child/ship deserters, victims of crime, etc. Many Police Gazette notices include a detailed physical description or a photograph.
- Prison records. Many give ship of arrival, physical description etc.
- Dentists and dental apprentices. Includes women.
- Nurses and masseurs (male & female).
- Police correspondence about old age and invalid pensioners 1908-1952.
- Cooktown residents who signed a petition in 1874. The original document has their signatures.
- Cooktown Boys' School admission register.
- Indexes in progress (watch for updates on What's New):
- More hospital records.
- More prison records.
- Various other sources.
My indexes to other sources (cemeteries, certificates etc)
Other published and unpublished indexes.
Specialist Indexes in Australia: a genealogist's guide.
My other genealogy sites have more advice and names.
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