10 July 2008

Government records detail Australia's immigration past

Old records from a Government department which highlight Queensland's immigration past have been handed over to the National Archives of Australia (NAA). The state's first arrivals and later Australian visa holders are highlighted in the records, which date back to just after Federation.

Detailed in them is the information on the establishment of the Department of Immigration in 1945 and the first people to be involved in that process. It charts entry to the state throughout the years and also contains details on the "ten pound-Poms" after the war.

Andrew Metcalfe, the secretary of the Department of Immigration and Citizenship, said: "The register illustrates the increase in the number of ships and later, aircraft, arriving in Queensland throughout the 20th century." He adds the entries in handwriting continue until the 1980s when the details were computerised.

Mr Metcalfe added: "The registers are also a record of how the great changes in immigration policy and processes over the last century were put into practice." The NAA say they promote good records management on Australian Government agencies and manage valuable records for the public.

Australia needs skilled workers: Anyone applying for an Australian visa should begin by completing the Australian Visa Bureau's online Australian visa application to see if they meet the Australian visa requirements.

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