South Australian Police Gazette 1862-1900

Compiled to be distributed amongst the police force only, Police Gazettes contain details and information that cannot be found anywhere else. Produced at regular intervals (usually once a week), it was a way of making information available to all in the police force throughout the whole state. 

The information contained in the Police Gazettes does vary a little from year to year, but overall you will find details of any changes within the police force which are all listed (promotions, demotions, discharges, resignations, deaths), information is also given on housebreak-ins, robberies, arson, murders, deserted seamen, warrants issued, prisoners discharged, missing friends, lost and found items and more.

Anyone researching their family will have a 'lost' family member or two! You may well find them listed here, being on either side of the law. Or maybe they were a policeman who transferred to another department or division, or someone that was a victim of a crime. You can find the physical details on persons listed here, missing, wanted or released, which helps to paint a picture of them (name, aliases used, age, height, colour hair, colour eyes, distinguishing features, even colour clothing worn).

Far from being just a unique and extremely fascinating resource for local, family and social historians, they are useful for anyone with an interest in South Australia in the 1860s.


A unique feature of the 1869 edition is that it contains a list of : Names of Contractors for supplying forage (hay, straw, wheat, oats etc) for the year 1869.

Example entries taken from the 8 January 1864 issue:

General Order
Police Constable Guy has been dismissed from the Police Force, from the 1st instant, for being drunk on duty on the night of the 31st December, 1863.

Deserted Seaman
Warrants, have been issued, at Port Adelaide, 4th January, 1864, for the apprehension of the undermentioned deserted seamen:-
From the Ship 'Elphinstone'
John Brown, 34 years of age, tall, pale complexion, sharp-featured.
Joseph Stilleway, 28 years of age, stout, florid complexion, curly hair.