Friday 22 April 2016

ANZAC Day: An update on recent Australian releases

Free access period has now expired
On Monday 25 April, Australia and New Zealand will be marking Anzac Day, the anniversary of the first major military action fought by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War.

Anzac Day is about more than the landing on Gallipoli, however. It's the day all Anzacs are remembered, so is opening up its entire military Anzac collection, including millions of new WWII service records and more than 12million images from the WW1 Anzac service dossiers.

See a full list of the featured collections here.

Free access will continue until 11:59pm AEST on Monday. You'll need a registered account (you don't need a current subscription). If you don't already have an account, simply sign up here; no financial information is requested.


There's been a spate of new Australian record releases over the last month, and for some reason I didn't cover them as they occurred. This blogpost aims to correct the situation.

Recent Australian record releases from Ancestry

Ancestry has added the following collections held by the Tasmanian Archive and Heritage Office:

Tasmania – Deeds of Land Grants, 1804-1935: The information in this records varies, as does the degree of detail provided. Details can include the date and location of the grant, a description of the land, name of the grantee, the amount paid and the names of witnesses.

Tasmania – Railway Employment Records, 1903-1977: Railway Classification Lists of the Tasmanian Government Railway were published annually in the Tasmanian Government Gazette from 1912 to 1977, and included the names of all employees of the railway. In addition, the lists typically provided the following details on each employee: Number, Office, Salary or other pay details, Date of birth or age at last birthday, Length of service, Date appointed to present class or grade, Classification of work (division and class) and Maximum salary or wage of class or grade.

Tasmania Teacher Employment History Cards, 1886-1945: This collection consists of employment history cards for male teachers in service in Tasmania, Australia between 1886 and 1945, though the majority of the cards date from the 1920s to 1940s. The information typically on each card is name, date of birth, qualifications and training, classification and school appointments. Often, more than one card was created for a teacher, and some cards appear to have been created retrospectively, especially for teachers who had long periods of service.

Australia, World War II Military Service Records, 1939-1945: This unique collection includes service records for Australians who served in the Second World War in the following units: Australian Army, Royal Australian Navy (RAN), and Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF). The records vary in the amount of information provided, although they usually contain biographical details supplied on enlistment. For more about these records and how to access the images from which the index has been created, be sure to read the details on the collection home page.

Sydney headstones transcriptions: This package consists of more than 285,000 headstone transcriptions from Rookwood and Waverly cemeteries in Sydney, Australia. They date from 1867.


Recent Australian record releases from FindMyPast

Queensland births, 1829-1919: This collections holds 930,000 birth records, searchable by first name, last name, registration year, as well as by father's first name and mother's first name. Bear in mind that birth registration did not become mandatory in Australia until March 1856.

Queensland Marriages 1829-1939: This collection holds 700,000 transcriptions, searchable by first name, last name and registration year.


Australian records on MyHeritage

More than 700 newspapers, digitised by the National Library of Australia, are now searchable on It's the same collection as that available on the NLA's free Trove.