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Research Guides

Government Records about the Australian Capital Territory

Government agencies and officials responsible for the administration of the ACT and the records they created

Commonwealth departments responsible for the administration of the Capital Territory

1911–16Department of External Affairs [1] (CA 7)
1916–28Department of Home and Territories (CA 15)
1928–32Department of Home Affairs [I] (CA 24)
1932–39Department of the Interior [I] (CA 27)
1939–72Department of the Interior [I] (CA 31)
1972–83Department of the Capital Territory (CA 1477)
1983–84Department of Territories and Local Government (CA 3499)
1984–87Department of Territories [II] (CA 4135)
1987–91Department of Arts, Sport, the Environment, Tourism and Territories (CA 5984)

Commonwealth ministers responsible for the Territory

Minister for Home Affairs
1911–13King O'Malley
1913–14Joseph Cook
1914–15WO Archibald
1915–16King O'Malley
Minister for Home and Territories
1916–17Frederick William Bamford
1917–20Patrick McMahon Glynn (CP 3)
1920–21Alexander Poynton
1921–26George Foster Pearce (CP 151)
1926–28Thomas William Glasgow
1928Charles William Clanan Marr
1928Neville Reginald Howse
1928–29Charles Lydiard Aubrey Abbott (CP 30)
Minister for Home Affairs
1929Charles Lydiard Aubrey Abbott (CP 30)
1929–32Arthur Blakeley
1932Robert Archdale Parkhill
Minister for the Interior
1932Robert Archdale Parkhill
1932–34John Arthur Perkins
1934Eric John Harrison (CP 648)
1934–37Thomas Paterson
1937–39John McEwen (CP 47)
1939–41Hattil Spencer Foll
1941–45Joseph Silver Collings (CP 166)
1945–49Herbert Victor Johnson
1949–100Philip Albert Martin McBride
19100–51Eric John Harrison (CP 648)
1951–56Wilfred Selwyn Kent Hughes
1956–58Allen Fairhall (CP 37)
1958–63Gordon Freeth (CP 45)
1963–64John Grey Gorton (CP 136)
1964–67John Douglas Anthony (CP 55)
1967–71Peter James Nixon (CP 83)
1971–72Ralph James Dunnet Hunt (CP 311)
1972Lance Herbert Barnard (CP 94)
Minister for the Capital Territory
1972–73Keppel Earl Enderby
1973–75Gordon Munro Bryant (CP 106)
1975Reginald Greive Withers (CP 177)
1975–76Eric Laidlaw Robinson (CP 542)
1976–77Anthony Allan Staley (CP 233)
1977–80Robert James Ellicott (CP 134)
1980–83William Michael Hodgman (CP 155)
Minister for Territories and Local Government
1983–84Thomas Uren
Minister for Territories
1984–87Gordon Glen Denton Scholes (CP 309)
Minister for Arts, Sport, the Environment, Tourism and Territories
1987–88John Joseph Brown (CP 414)
Minister for Arts and Territories
1988Gary Francis Punch
1988–89Allan Clyde Holding (CP 434)
Minister for Arts, Tourism and Territories
1989–90Allan Clyde Holding (CP 434)

Administrators of the Federal Capital Territory

1912–17David Miller
1930AJ Christie
1930–32Charles Daley

ACT Chief Ministers, 1989–present

1989Rosemary Follett
1989–91Trevor Kaine
1991–95Rosemary Follett
1995–2000Kate Carnell
2000–01Gary Humphries
2001–11Jon Stanhope
2011–Katy Gallagher

Government agencies and their records

The following section lists individual government agencies responsible for administration of the Territory over the past century and some of the principal record series they created. The list of series is intended as a convenient point of reference and is not exhaustive.

The series listed below were created by those departments responsible for the Territory. While each series contains many individual items about Canberra and the Territory, they do not deal exclusively with the Territory, and other territories and regions are also included.

Selected records relating to Government Agencies responsible for administration of the Capital Territory

National Archives
Correspondence files, 1903–38 A1
Correspondence files, 1935–50 A659
Correspondence files, 1946– A431
Photographic records
National Archives
Australian News and Information Bureau – photographic negatives and prints, 1945–71 A1200
Australian News and Information Bureau – photographic colour transparencies, 1971– A6135

The following record series deal with records relating exclusively to Canberra and the Territory.

Selected records relating exclusively to Canberra and the Territory

Works – building project files, 1925–59 A869
Lands – correspondence 'TL' (Territory Lands), 1932–62 A880
National Archives
Home Affairs – correspondence relating to the establishment of the Territory, 1906–14 A206
Home Affairs, Works – correspondence, 'FC' (Federal Capital), 1910–17 A110
Parks and Gardens – correspondence files, 'P and G', 1961–75 A1144
Federal Capital Territory Office – correspondence, administration, 1912–14 A202
Lands and Survey – correspondence, Territory lands, 1913–25 A192
Works – correspondence, Capital Works, 1913–26 A199
Federal Capital Territory Office – correspondence, lands, 1915–16 A209
Works – contract agreements, 1918–48 A295
Works – correspondence files, 'C' (Commonwealth), 1930–49 A292
Works – job files, 1949– A660
Photographic records
National Archives
Photographs relating to the Federal Capital, 1914–26 A1661
Collection of glass plate negatives, 1921–35 A3560
Photographic prints of early Canberra, 1923–28 A5342
Plans and drawings
Building project files (plans), 1925–51 A875
National Archives
Architectural plans of Canberra, 1921–59 A2617
Architectural plans, 'CA' (Canberra Architectural), 1959–97 A2712
Royal Commission on Sites proposed for the Seat of Government for the Commonwealth, 1903
National Archives
Reports and minutes of evidence, 1903 A315
Reports and minutes of evidence, 1903 A316
Summary of evidence, 1903 A318
Summary of evidence, 1903 A319
Exhibits, 1903 A320
National Capital Design Competition, 1912
National Archives
Drawings submitted as part of the Design Competition, 1912 A710
Federal Capital Advisory Committee, 1921–25
National Archives
Minutes of meetings, 1921–24 A411
Correspondence files, 1921–26 A416
Federal Capital Commission, 1925–30
National Archives
Minutes of meetings, 1925–30 A412
General correspondence, 1927–30 CP981/2
ACT Advisory Council, 1930–58
Correspondence files, 1930–59 A2942
Volumes of signed minutes of meetings, 1930–74 A4854
National Capital Planning and Development Committee, 1938–57
Minutes of meetings, 1939–57 A3070
Correspondence files, 'PC' (Planning Committee), 1949–57 A3032
Senate Inquiry into the Development of Canberra, 1954–55
National Archives
Records of the inquiry into the development of Canberra in relation to the original plan and subsequent modifications, 1954–55 A12449
General files of the Senate Select Committee on the Development of Canberra, 1954–55 A7686
National Capital Development Commission, 1957–89
National Archives
Correspondence files, 1958–89 A1340
Minutes of Commission meetings, 1958–88 A8840
Minutes and papers of meetings of the National Capital Planning Committee, 1958–83 A8839
ACT Legislative Assembly/House of Assembly, 1974–86
Minutes of proceedings, First Assembly of the ACT Legislative Assembly, 1974–79 A7128
Miscellaneous unsorted papers, 1974–85 A8174
Correspondence files, 'LA' (Legislative Assembly) or 'HA' (House of Assembly), 1974–86 A7184