ELECTORAL ROLLS - AUSTRALIA
Electoral rolls list people who are registered and eligible to vote at federal, state, territory and local government elections and referenda. Before Federation in 1901 and for some years afterwards, there were separate rolls for Commonwealth and for state elections. The Commonwealth Electoral Commission now produces these rolls for each state. A separate state roll is still maintained by Western Australia.
In 1902 the first Commonwealth Parliament passed the Commonwealth Franchise Act of 1902 which granted universal adult suffrage to most men and women over 21 excluding Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Compulsory enrolment was introduced in 1911. Optional voting for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people was introduced in 1962 and compulsory in 1984. In 1973, the Australian Parliament amended the Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918 and lowered the minimum voting age to 18 years.
State Electoral Rolls are available from different dates. Click on links below to access information from Electoral Rolls for different States.
- NSW from 1842
- Victoria from 1841
- Tasmania 1856 - no Sterrys
- Queensland 1860
- South Australia 1905 - no Sterrys
- Western Australia 1903
- Northern Territory 1922
- ACT 1928
[See https://www.nla.gov.au/research-guides/australian-electoral-rolls for details]
Many Electoral Rolls are accessible online. Note these are available only for selected years:
NSW - 1842-1980; Victoria - 1856, 1903-1980; Queensland 1903-1980; Tasmania 1914-1980; South Australia 1939-1951; Western Australia 1903-1980; Northern Territory 1922-1980; ACT 1928-1980
NSW - 1903, 1913 and 1935 only; Victoria 1939 and 1946 only; Tasmania 1934 and 1943 only; Queensland 1860-1959; South Australia 1939, 1941 and 1943 only; Western Australia 1939, 1943 and 1949 only; Northern Territory 1895-1940
Canberra Heritage Portal [free]: 1916-1967