Colonial Australian Statistical Data#

Statistical registers underwent a number of changes across the 19th century. In 1906 the the Commonwealth Bureau of Census and Statistics was created that standardised reporting under the Census and Statistics Act (1905).

1. Australian Historical Population Statistics:#

contains a wide range of demographic data in spreadsheet format (Microsoft Excel), going back, where possible, to the beginning of European settlement (1788) of Australia.

2. Historical and Colonial Census Data Archive (HCCDA) Dataverse:#

The Historical Census and Colonial Data Archive (HCCDA) is an archive of Australian colonial census publications and reports covering the period from 1833 to 1901, the year of Australia’s federation. The corpus includes 18,638 pages of text, and approximately 15000 tables, all with full digital images, text conversion and individually identified pages and tables. Please note that the archive contains colonial census reports, but not individual census returns.

Using the HCCDA

The easiest way to veiw the data is to donload the .xhtml files and open them with your preferred web browser. Alternatively, the data for all states and years is available in .xtable format (as it was displayed as HTML tables on the legacy website). One suggested way to veiw these files is to convert the files to HTML and view them with a web browser by changing the .xtable extension to .html.

3. Other:#

  • Catalogue of Australian Statistical Publications 1804 to 1901: The Catalogue of Australian Statistical Publications, 1804 to 1901, provides an outline of the publications and statistical compilations produced by Australia’s six colonial statistical bureaus. The Catalogue accompanies the Colonial Microfiche Series, 1804 to 1901, a collection of over 3000 microfiche which are available at ABS and other libraries. The Colonial Microfiche Series, 1804 to 1901, represents most of the statistics published by the various colonial bureaus and their precursors, and also includes the 1901 Census, the first and only census to be carried out individually by each of the newly federated States.

  • A Statistical Account of Australia and New Zealand, 1903-04: A Statistical Account of the Seven Colonies of Australasia, was compiled between 1890 and 1904 by the New South Wales Statistician, Timothy A. Coghlan. The eleven volumes bring together statistics for each of the colonies of Australia and New Zealand and are complemented by analysis and commentary. The publication also includes chapters on political divisions, areas and boundaries, climate, parliaments and defence much like in the current Year Book Australia.

  • Library guides from State and National Institutions: