26 September 2023

Property Registers are Archives ‘Find’

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ArchivesACT has drawn inspiration from the COVID-19 restrictions for its May ‘Find of the Month’, exploring the Registers of Government Property and Tenancies.

The Archives said its Find included some of the earliest Government records held in its collection.

“Housebound Canberrans may be feeling that the walls are closing in on them at the moment,” the Archives said.

“Maybe it’s time to explore the history of your house.”

It said the records could be used to track the histories of government housing and rural properties for anyone interested in the Territory’s land and property development.

“The Registers document the management and maintenance of government housing properties in the ACT from 1925 to 1968,” it said.

“Many of the volumes have been digitised…so we felt it would be timely to re-visit these records, and to provide some examples of the wealth of information that can be discovered in the Registers.”

It said the property registers provided details on the relocation of about 200 houses from the Australian Air Force Base, Tocumwal NSW to Canberra after the Second World War.

“The houses were left empty after the Second World War and the Federal Government sought to make use of them to alleviate the post war accommodation crisis in Canberra,” the Archives said.

“The property and tenancy registers can provide details about the date of relocation, each building’s occupants and the date that each house was sold by the government.”

ArchivesACT said the property and tenancy registers could be helpful for research on former Canberra settlements and government buildings that no longer exist.

It said that although not all the Registers had been digitised, records could be found by using its online form if a property couldn’t be found on its website.

ArchivesACT’s website can be accessed at this PS News link and its ‘Request a Record’ form at this link.

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