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Family history

The records we hold were created and received by government agencies such as courts, government departments and schools. It’s these records that you search when you do your family history at QSA.

Birth, death and marriage records

Birth, death and marriage certificates cannot be searched or viewed at QSA – you can find them at the Registry of Birth, Deaths and Marriages. The State Library of Queensland also hold some early church records of baptisms, marriages and burials.

Where do I start?

To start your family history, gather as much information as you can from other sources, including full names, dates of birth, and place of residence.

Read Start your research for more information about researching at QSA.

How do I find the records?

Explore the collection

In Explore the collection you will find information about records on:


Including ship passenger lists; land orders (land issued to immigrants); passports; naturalisations

Schools, hospitals and orphanages

Including admission registers for many state schools; health and healthcare records; admission and other records for orphanages and reformatories


Including wills; divorces; inquests; insolvency; police gazettes


Including registers of lands; pastoral holdings; leases; maps


Including state electoral rolls; civil servants; imperial pensions

Search the archives

ArchivesSearch provides access to QSA’s collection of records, including documents, letters, land orders, maps, plans and images. For help searching, read the ArchivesSearch help guide.

More information

Also read our brief guides on:

Where else can I look?

Contact us

Contact us if you if need more help.

Archival research terms

Record—information of permanent and historic value, often in paper-based form (e.g. a letter, photograph, a map), but can also be a CD, a film or a digital file

Item—a single record or many records, e.g. an item may be a single architectural drawing, a 500-page leather-bound book, or a bundle of correspondence (letters, telegrams, reports)

Series—a group of related items created, received, or used in the same activity

Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Australia (CC BY 3.0)
Last updated
24 May 2017
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