Archive for February 2009

The New Zealand Gazette. What's that?

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Many family history researchers seldom seem to get beyond the standard research tools for family history. You know, things such as BDM’s, directories, electoral rolls etc. and never venture beyond the material in the “family history” collection. There are many excellent resources in existence which hardly ever get used.
Government publications – particularly 19th century and early 20thcentury – are a gold mine of information. The New Zealand Gazettes are not consulted enough when doing New Zealand research.
What is the New Zealand Gazette?
It is the official newspaper of the New Zealand Government and has been published in various forms since 1840. It is the means of publishing all kinds of official notices and proclamations.
Names of people can be found under headings such as:
  • Commissioners of Trade, Customs, railways, native lands
  • Consular and vice-consular appointments
  • Dentists' register: name, address, date of registration, qualification
  • Justice Department: appointments and resignations of judges, coroners, crown prosecutors, magistrates, justices of the Peace
  • Licensing committees: district appointments
  • Mail services: contractors 
  • Marriage celebrants
  • Medical practitioner: name, address, date of registration, qualification
  • List of qualified or registered teachers in various formats since 1887
  • Mining companies: company's and shareholders' names and addresses
  • Partnerships: registered, amended, dissolved
  • Patents: name, address and description of the product
  • Post and Telegraph: appointment of postmasters
  • Prisoners: appointment of gaolers, surgeons and visiting justices
  • Public Trust: names of deceased people whose estates are under management
  • Public Works: lists of applicants tendering for work
  • Registrars of births, deaths and marriages, of electors, the Supreme Court and Court of Appeal
  • Sheep farmers: names of farmers and the number of sheep owned   
               (information taken from Tracing family history in New Zealand, Anne Bromell)
As you can see, the people listed in the Gazette are many and varied and it would be well worth dipping into this source.

Many libraries through out New Zealand hold the New Zealand Gazette.

Auckland City Libraries also has an electronic version of this valuable resource.