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WCC, Town Clerk's Department early correspondence
The majority of the letters are addressed to the Town Clerk, the Mayor and Councillors or the Corporation and are written by members of the public, local business owners and representatives, other local authorities and government departments and Corporation senior staff and employees.
The subject matter is broad and in many cases focuses on the relationships between the people of Wellington and the business of the Wellington City Corporation, or internal relationships between various Corporation departments and the Town Clerk. Letter cover permission requests, invitations, complaints, petitions, requests for service and information, tenders, enquiries, internal memos and reports, job appointments and resignations, and more. The correspondence focuses on topics such as land use, utilities and infrastructure (e.g. water, drainage, roading and street improvements, street lighting, sewerage and rubbish), rates, leases, building construction / alteration, property subdivision, legislation and bylaws, reserves, parks and gardens, finance (including loans), claims, valuations, fire management, public transport, libraries and other WCC services, etc.
Between 1878 and 1900, letters were given a unique registration number and filed individually. Around September 1902 file covers were introduced, and correspondence was filed together by subject or topic, stating with the initial letter. Although new correspondence was added up until the 1960s, new files stopped being created in 1926 with the establishment of a new filing system [Archive Series 00001]
Letters were registered using an annual single number. The first 19 letters were registered as 1878/1-1878/19 but date from 5 October 1877 to 29 December 1877. The format for registration, year/number, is consistent throughout the series. From the earliest letters, the registration number was written on the back of the incoming letter, along with details of the date received, name of writer, and sometimes the abbreviation ‘ansd’ for answered, with the date and the name of the officer replying. After August 1889 all inwards letters were stamped on the back on arrival with a form to enter registration details such as number, date received, name of writer, letter subject or title. The form also has headings for 'answered', and 'letter book folio' but these aren’t consistently filled in. When file covers were introduced in 1902 the registration information was written on the front of the file cover, along with comments by various officers who responded to the issue.
Some items have been removed from their original series and re-filed with related material, sometimes within this series and sometimes within following Town Clerk's file series [Archive Series 00001]. A few files remained open past this date, with papers being added up until the 1960s.
At one point a number of original documents relating to fire and fire brigades were borrowed from the early correspondence and copies of the letters were placed on the file in place of the originals. When the originals were later returned, they were re-filed in the appropriate folders and the copies taken out. In some cases, however, originals were not returned so copies have remained in the folders.MediumFileSystem of ArrangementChronological, annual single number registration systemCollection TypeWellington City Council
Re informing Town Clerk that permit for ice making issued to B Hibberd should be revoked due to drop in water levels in reservoir - City Surveyor
Re declaration that no one is living or using water for domestic purposes on Lot 19 Customhouse Quay - J Compton
Re petition to allow a street to be formed through Town Acre 290 - land holders/residents of Lloyd / Nelson Streets [Hania Street], Kent Terrace