Using the CSO1 at the Archives

Using the Colonial Secretary Office. (CSO1) General Corrospondence 1824-1836.


In the past I have used this medium many times expecially when researching for Exiled Three Times Over. Thelma and I found a large amount of information in this series covering the early settlers from Norfolk Island.

I have not used these microfilms for sometime and found with the new setup of Archives they could not be used in the way that they had been in the past. Even the old method wasn't easy to use. First you had to go through the CSO3/1 & CSO3/1/2 indexs' to find the name of the person you were looking for. When this was done you then used the number next to the name to establish were the letter was on the many microfilms. This information was found in yellow folders on the back wall of the Archives Office at 77 Murray Street. Often the letter with the name in the index was missing, but the heading gave you an idea what the letter had been about.

Wanting to look up a certain person I inquired as to where the CSO3 index could be found I asked at the desk and was shown how to find what I was looking for on the Archives online site.  Using the memories and then clicking on Archives online took me into the Series Details where the CSO3 index was to be found in the drawes in the outer part near the History Room. The microfilm box has a Z and a new number on the box in the draws on the back wall near the microfilm readers.

CSO3 indexes to general Correspondence Arthur Period January 1824 - Dec 1836.
CSO3/1/1  A-L
CSO3/1/2  M-Z
CSO3/1/3  A-Z

Item details CSO3/1/1-3 (in box in draws marked Z1965-6)


For those who are using the CSO for the first time first google -
State Library of Tasmania, then go to Tasmania memories.
Archives Office of Tasmania -Tasmanian Archives on line.
Series Search record series.
Type in CSO1
Search results CSO1 general correspondence.
Series details.



The subjects in these letters cover a large amount of names, places etc. One I found while looking for furniture in the Colony in 1834 I found a list of what the women convicts were bringing with them on the Harmony in 1829. It gave the name of the convict and if she had brought with her a box, trunk or bag.

Another was the amount of Huon Pine logs that were being brought out of Macquarie Harbour in 1828 to be auctioned and the names of those who had private contracts to but the logs.  So there are lots of different information in the CSO1 series. 

The one good thing the new method has done is that you can look at home before going into the Archives once you know the method and will give you the Z number.

Read Series Details on Archives Tasmania under CSO1 & 3.