Archives Search Help


Basic Search

• To search, type your word(s), phrase or number in the search box. The search will automatically truncate your term unless the ‘exact phrase’ option is used for searching, ie a search for jan will also find Jane, Jandowae, janitor. Tip: using fewer search terms can give you a better result; for example, school files may not have the word ‘school’ in their description.
• If you enter two or more terms in the search box the system will only search for them if they appear in the same record field. It will not match two or more words where they appear in different fields. To illustrate:

The record for the file for the Land Selection for Alfred Wall which was in the Maryborough district contains the following fields:

Description: Selection File: WALL, Alfred Lawrence.
Departmental number: Maryborough, 287

The following searches will find the item:
Selection Wall (both terms in description field)
Wall Alfred (both terms in description field)
Maryborough 287 (both terms in departmental numbers field)

The following searches will not find the item:
Wall Maryborough
Wall Selection Maryborough
Wall 287
Selection 287

In each of the above searches the terms entered appear in different fields and will not be searched together. Entering fewer search terms can give a better search result.

Not all items (eg photographs or individual land or staff files) have been listed individually in the catalogue as yet. If you have trouble finding records you need to think about what Government Department or Agency is likely to have created the file and what Series it is likely to be found in.

Search Method:
All of the words – This is a Boolean “and” search. It will find titles or descriptions which include all of the terms you have entered, in any order. This search automatically truncates, ie a search for jan will also find Jane, Jandowae, janitor etc.

Any of the words – This is a Boolean “or” search. It will find titles or descriptions which contain at least one of the terms you have entered. This search automatically truncates, ie a search for jan will also find Jane, Jandowae, janitor etc.

Exact phrase – This will find the words together as an exact phrase – in the exact order and with no intervening words. For example, an ‘exact phrase’ search for John Smith will not find the Police Staff file labelled John Greville Smith. This search does not automatically truncate, ie a search for jan will find records which contain that word but will not find words such as Jane, janitor etc. This search can also be used for a Previous System Location number, eg RSI2929/1/4.

Sort order:
You can choose to have your results sorted according to title, date (earliest first), or by ID number. You may also choose the number of records you see on the screen, with options being 5, 10, 20 or 30.

To search:
Click the Search button to find the records. If you make a mistake with your search terms you can click Clear to clear the search boxes and start again.

Ordering Items
Items may only be ordered from within the Public Search Room. You need to have a valid Researcher’s ticket and to have selected a table. Items will be brought to the shelf number matching the table number you have entered. Please have only one item at a time on your table and place items on the returns table when you have finished.