When records are transferred to us, we like to know as much as possible about the record's origin, use, and chain of custody - in archival theory, this is known as the principle of provenance.
Most records that are transferred to us go through an official process between Government agencies. From time to time Government archives are moved out of official custody and end up in local museums, historical societies, libraries or in private hands. These are known as estrays. We are always pleased to access donations of estray official government records for inclusion in the State archives collection (or return to the responsible parent department).
While it is important to understand the provenance of the record, it is is also good to know who to thank for transferring it to us, particularly when it is an estray. In the case of a document titled 'A Nominal List of all Prisoners confined in HM Gaol, Parramatta, this 3rd July 1845', not even the name of the person who sent it to us was included!
The document is signed by Visiting Magistrate, Gilbert Elliot, and Parramatta Gaol Gaoler, Thomas Allen. It is not clear who this document was originally addressed to.
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