NSW State Archives eNewsletter - ISSUE 121 October 2022

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are advised that the following newsletter may contain names and images of people who have passed away.

New website coming soon!

The Museums of History NSW website will be launched on Tuesday 22 November 2022, this will see the collections and resources of NSW State Archives and Sydney Living Museums brought into one online location.

It will be a powerful platform for storytelling and with its expanded search function, in tandem with our ongoing digitisation work, will make our collections, sites and resources more discoverable and accessible, and enable us to build stronger and deeper connections with communities across NSW and beyond.

Visit the new website on Tuesday 22 November to start exploring yourself.

Let the drum-roll begin!


ImageNRS 4481, M5603, Conservatorium auditorium: stage set for orchestra, 1917 [edited, colourised version of B&W original image]

Museums of History NSW

As we reported last issue, NSW Parliament has recently passed a Bill that has paved the way for the creation of a new cultural institution focused on the history of the state.

This Act establishes Museums of History NSW (MHNSW), bringing together NSW State Archives and Sydney Living Museums.

Alongside the creation of MHNSW will be the formation of State Records NSW (SRNSW) – a separate and dedicated agency for recordkeeping standards, regulation, advice, education and policy.

We have now provided an FAQ section to answer some possible questions you might have about the formation of MHNSW.

We look forward to sharing updates with you as we work towards the launch of MHNSW.

Read FAQs.

Image: The Mint. Photo © Douglas Riley for Sydney Living Museums. NSW State Archives. Photo © NSW State Archives


New Federation guide

The process to federate the six Australian colonies into the Commonwealth of Australia took over fifty years from its beginnings in the 1840s.

Part one of this guide highlights the role of New South Wales in making the nation of Australia, along with key relevant records from our collection.

Read more.


Copied files now online


In addition to the digitised records we continuously add to our online catalogue (Collection Search), digital copies generated via our Copy Order Service will also become available in Collection Search in due course.

You may have noticed some of these digital files attached to items already, distinguished by the PDF icon. If you click on the item, under the heading 'Click below to view file', simply click on the button to load and view the digitised file.

More than 2,000 probate packets have already been added, along with insolvency, bankruptcy, and deceased estate files, as well as divorce files dated over 75 years, with many more to come.

Private Hospital Records webinar - now online

While we don't hold records of patients in private hospitals in the State Archives Collection, there are records you can use to find out more about the hospitals themselves.

Watch this webinar as we examine the records that inform us about the operation of private hospitals in the 19th and early 20th centuries.


Sydney Open

For the weekend of 5-6 November, unlock the doors of historically significant, architecturally inspiring, contemporary and secret spaces usually off-limits to the general public across the CBD and Greater Sydney.  

Tickets for Sydney Open are still available.

Buy your tickets now!

Image: © Brett Boardman for Sydney Living Museums.

State Records Authority of NSW Board Member Vacancy

Are you a user of the records created by NSW State Government (Including State archives)?

Would you like to have a say about the policies and strategic plans of the State Records Authority of NSW (SRNSW) and the identification of records to be retained as State archives? We have an exciting opportunity coming up.

Please review this advertisement about a vacancy on the Board of SRNSW.

Upcoming webinar

Government buildings have shaped where and how we live in NSW.

This webinar will explore what the Government Architect's records can tell us about these buildings - how they were planned and designed and how they were built. 

The Built Environment: Building Records in the State Archives Collection webinar
Friday 18 November 2022

Register for more of our webinars!


First Nations Speaker Series

Hear fascinating discussions from contemporary authors, artists, curators, designers, and part of the First Nations Speaker Series, presented by Sydney Living Museums (SLM) in collaboration with GML Heritage and the Research Centre for Deep History at the Australian National University.

On Wednesday 2 November, Wiradjuri librarian and museum educator, Nathan mudyi Sentance will discuss the question of how audiences might better engage with uncomfortable histories, especially histories related to the ongoing impact of settler colonialism.

Nathan 'mudyi' Sentance
Remembering and Re-storying: Storytelling approaches I have taken to confront uncomfortable histories

Wednesday 2 November 2022
Museum of Sydney

Bookings essential

Our address:
Museums of History NSW
Western Sydney Records Centre
161 O'Connell Street
Kingswood, NSW 2747

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