Last updated:

September 9, 2016

What do I need to know?

Records are filed by year and then, within the index close index Definition Often an alphabetised or other sequential list that refers to records arranged in a different, less accessible sequence. Often one index will point you to a number you may need to access an item in a related set of records. (see also nominal index, numerical index and subject index). book, by subject.

The correspondence itself is not online, but the subject index can be viewed online. You will need to order close order Definition Physical records can be ordered for viewing in PROV’s reading rooms.  When a user orders a record, it is reserved solely for their use. the actual correspondence once you have identified the subject matter or the topic of correspondence – for example “by laws”, “draining” or “markets” – and the approximate date it was sent. The more accurate the date, the more you can narrow your search.

How do I search?


About these records

Our collection contains over 4,000 boxes of correspondence (letters) sent and received by the City of Melbourne between 1840 and 1997 on a number of issues.


The letters may cover several years, many writers and any number of pages, or just a single page and correspondent. i.e. "abattoirs", "Darling Flood" "street lighting", "Fire Brigade Conference, 1893".

Next Steps

For records from 1984-1989, browse the index list of the Correspondence Files (VPRS 17049) based on year and alphabet of subject e.g. (G)allagher place – (O)xford Street.

The records contain references to Town Clerk’s Files Two and Corporate Services Correspondence Files.

What are in these records?

Pieces of correspondence (letters) covering various subjects managed by the City of Melbourne or Town Hall.