Throughout Australia there is a growing interest in state and local history. In Queensland this is evidenced by the increasing demands placed on the staff of the John Oxley Library as students from secondary and tertiary institutions and members of the general public research school, church, family and area histories as well as studies of selected industries. In 1981, the Library Board of Queensland published A bibliography of Queensland history by W.R. Johnston to assist in meeting the needs of this group of users.
Unfortunately there were some errors and omissions in this first bibliography. Moreover, the number of published works relating to Queensland history continues to grow, and the holdings of unpublished material at the John Oxley Library and the Fryer Library of the University of Queensland have been greatly extended. The present volume which is reworked from A bibliography of Queensland history attempts to address these issues.
This new work has comprehensive author/title and general subject indexes. Attention has been given to providing the reader with ready subject access to the most pertinent sources before he proceeds to more detailed research. The subject index is not, however, meant to take the place of the usually more detailed individual indexes to the published works it lists, or to suggest all subject possibilities of the unpublished materials.
Consideration was given to providing an evaluative reading essay for the different topics covered in this survey. That format, however, severely limits the number of works which can be cited. Nor can such an essay adequately describe the variety of materials to be found in individual unpublished papers. The use of annotations was also considered and rejected, partly because the work would have been expanded so much, but primarily because annotations cannot take the place of a quick survey of the most useful literature. The compilers feel that the overall arrangement into broad subject categories, together with the more specific subject index, allows the reader to review appropriate sources most effectively.
This guide is for the general user, not the thesis writer or the bibliographer: it is designed mainly to help readers. It concentrates on the most useful sources to be found in the two major collections of material relating to Queensland in Brisbane, the John Oxley Library and the Fryer Library within the University of Queensland. Though most of the printed materials are readily available elsewhere, the unpublished material is most often unique to the holding library. Users should be aware that there are useful collections elsewhere in Queensland, especially in Townsville and Rockhampton and that valuable primary source material is held at Queensland State Archives, and in the archives of various churches and business organizations. Some indication of the Queensland material held in the Mitchell Library (Sydney), can be found through its printed catalogues, the Dictionary catalog of printed books and the Catalogue of manuscripts of Australasia and the Pacific and the various specialised subject bibliographies it has produced. Similarly, the National Library of Australia (Canberra) publishes an on-going Guide to the collections, commenced in 1974.
Ferguson's Bibliography of Australia lists the libraries holding each particular item number. The National Library has been compiling addenda and corrigenda to this bibliography for some time now, with the aim of an eventual publication; in the meantime, the master file is available for consultation through the National Library's Cataloguing Department. The Australian National University's Archives of Business and Labour hold some Queensland trade union, business and pastoral records which can be located through their published List of holdings.
Although this Guide is intended to make the resources of the Oxley and Fryer Libraries more readily accessible to the reader by extending and supplementing their traditional catalogues in a number of ways, it is in no way intended to replace them. ..............................