Our Local history collection includes heritage study, historical resources and recent reports of the Parramatta area, settlement, development, communities and events.

Community Profile

  • Includes results from the 2006, 2001, 1996, and 1991 Censuses of Population and Housing


Population Forecasts

  • Population Forecasts attempts to make projections on the total size and composition of the population of the Parramatta City Council within a 20 year span


The library has access to historic Australian newspapers and older editions of local newspapers at the Local Studies Library.

Cumberland Argus     Sep 1888 – Oct 1962

Parramatta Advertiser Jul 1956 –

Parramatta and Hills News    Jan 1957 – Jun 1982

Parramatta Journal     Mar 1995 –

The Sydney Gazette   Mar 1803 – Jun 1880

Sydney Gazette Card Index 1803 – 1829

Sydney Gazette Manuscript Index 1803 – 1826, 1827 – 1842

Sydney Morning Herald Card Index, Jan 1842 – Jan 1845, 1904 – 1918

The Sydney Mail, June 1860 – Dec 1938

Cumberland Free Press, Sept 1896 – Jun 1897

Advocate (Parramatta), Jun 1975 – May 1976

Chronicle (Parramatta), Oct 1958 – Mar 1961

Courier (Parramatta), Dec 1960 – Jan 1962

Granville Independent, Sep 1900 – Mar 1901

Auburn News and Granville, Sep 1903 – May 1935

Auburn and Lidcombe Advance, Dec 1925 – Dec 1939

Parramatta Messenger, Jan 1847 – Jun 1847

Sydney Morning Herald Index to B.M.D. & F. notices 1831 – 1853

Parramatta Chronicle & Cumberland General Advertisers, Dec 1843 – Dec 1847

Parramatta City News, Dec 1928 – Dec 1929

Cumberland Times, Jan 1903 – Jun 1911

Parramatta Argus, Jul 1977 – Nov 1977

Cumberland Mercury, Jan 1875 – Apr 1895

Farm and Garden (Parramatta), Oct 1958 – Jan 1984

Chinese Times, Dec 2002 – Mar 2003

Hills District Farm and Garden, Jan 1984 – Feb 1985

Weekly Advance (Granville), Feb 1892 – Jan 1893

Local Newspapers (Hard copies)

Hills Shire & Times (July 1985 – Jun 1986)

The Hills District Farm and Garden (1969 – 1984)

Mercery (Aug 1977 – March 1995)

Parramatta Advocate ( June 1965 – Dec 1975)

Parramatta hills News (July 1965 – June 1982)

Sydney Morning Herald (Microfilm Reels)

Search every edition of The Sydney Morning Herald and The Sun-Herald from 1831-

Sands Directories
Sands Directories were published between 1858/1859 – 1932/33 and is used for tracing both local and family history. They were published yearly (except 1860, 1862, 1872, 1874, 1878 and 1881). Major sections are:

  • alphabetical surname and given name index
  • a municipal section
  • trades and professions section.

They list occupiers of houses, not necessarily owners.

The Municipality of Parramatta was first listed in 1884.

A complete set of Sands Directories is available on microfiche and Public PCs.
The alphabetical surname and given name section is also searchable on Ancestry.com


  • Provides access to over 90 million items, ranging from books and journals to maps and music, from a multitude of sites


Sydney morning Herald

Search every edition of The Sydney Morning Herald and The Sun-Herald from 1831-

Vertical Files

  • The vertical files are folders of documents and research on individuals, places, streets, houses, and subjects related to Parramatta area.

Subdivision Plans

  • Land subdivision plans were produced by real estate agents to publicise the sale of their subdivision. They show the position of individual blocks as well as prominent buildings or landmarks in existence at the time of the subdivision. They can indicate when an area was settled and an approximate date a building was constructed. However, the fact that a subdivision was planned does not mean it went ahead.

Parramatta Rate Books on Microfilm



1870-1900 Anderson Ward

Parramatta Assessment Books on Microfilm

1869-1899 Anderson Ward

1870-1899 Marsden Ward

1869-1899 Gore Ward

1869-1899 Forrest Ward

Parramatta Valuation Books on Microfilm


St John’s Church of England Parramatta Church Registers

1789-1973 Baptisms

1790-1976 Marriages

1790-1939 Burials

1911-1925 Confirmations

All Saints’ Church of England Parramatta Church Registers

March 1844 – July 1944 Baptisms Marriages Burials

St Patrick’s Catholic Church Parramatta Church Registers

1826-1919 Baptisms

1836-1905 Marriages

1840-1888 Burials

August 15 1880 Confirmations

Research Guides:

 Research guides assist in starting research and directing towards the key resources on selected subjects – local history, family history, BDM, convicts, electoral rolls etc.

  • Local Studies & Family History Flyer
  • Australia Births, Deaths, Marriages and Cemetery Transcriptions
  • Convict, Court and Police Records
  • Female Factory, Female Orphan School, Prisons & Asylums
  • Pioneer Biography, Family Histories & Historical Societies
  • Shipping Records for Family History Research
  • Researching Indigenous Ancestry, History & Culture A Select Bibliography
  • Census & Electoral Rolls – Occupational, Business, Medical, State & Local Government Records
  • International Records & the IGI
  • Military Records & Information
  • Parks & Reserves – Placenames, Gazetteers, Roads, Directories and Maps

Other Resources:

 Our Library holds a large collection of books, journals, online resources, databases, newspapers, church records, cemetery records to support the research.

Ready Reference

The Local Studies collection at Heritage Centre Library is a specialised reference collection that can help you research the history of the area and the people who have lived here.


  • The Archaeology of The Dharawal People of NSW – Photographic archive of research based on rock carvings and drawings of the Dharawal People around bushland and shores of NSW.


  • Barani- Indigenous history of Sydney City with life stories and images of many Indigenous men and women who have made great contributions to their people and their country.


  • National Native Title Tribunal – the latest news, maps and developments in Native Title.


  • New South Wales Department of Aboriginal Affairs – part of the NSW Government, this department works with Aboriginal people, government agencies, and the private and community sectors to promote the interests of Aboriginal people in NSW.


  • Stories of the Dreaming – Australian Museum site providing stories of the history and culture of indigenous Australians handed down since the beginning of time.


Military Records and Indexes

  • Australian War Graves in South Africa, 1899 – 1902 – This site includes a searchable database of information from Australian Boer War memorials.


  • Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour Database – A searchable honour roll database providing details of Australia’s war dead.


  • Commonwealth War Graves Commission – This Register provides personal and service details and places of commemoration for the 1.7 million members of the Commonwealth forces who died in the First or Second World Wars, as well as record some 60,000 civilian casualties of the Second World War is provided without details of burial location.


  • Nominal Roll of the AIF who served overseas 1914-1918 – A Searchable index of approximately 324,000 names of members of the Australian Imperial Force (AIF) who served overseas during the First World War.


  • World War II Nominal Roll – A searchable index created to honour and commemorate the men and women who served in Australia’s defence forces and the Merchant Navy during World War II.


Female Factory

Historical Societies

 Searching the Registrar General’s Maps and Plans