The ANU Archives holds numerous records of and relating to pastoral stations, most numerously in New South Wales, but also in Queensland, Victoria, the Northern Territory, South Australia and Western Australia.
Farmers and station managers routinely recorded weather conditions. These records usually do not conform to meteorological standards but may give insights to historical conditions in locations which may not have otherwise been covered by official meteorological records.
The list below is not exhaustive, and pastoral stations may have recorded rainfall and other weather conditions in journals or other types of records, and may not be indexed as such in archival description.
Business records from Burns Philp (shipping line and merchant) and Colonial Sugar Refining Limited (CSR) also contain climate observations. Coverage is mostly the Pacific and northern Australia given the ambit of their activities. Weather observations are usually related to plantations and sugar production or may be related to shipping activities.
NBAC 4-2: Correspondence relating to taxation, stocks and shares, station improvements, leases, and cattle sales (includes rainfall records 1903-1928)
NBAC 4-5-2: Map of Queensland, Southern Sales Limited (1910). Shows railways, roads, shire boundaries, towns, rainfall, location of banks and money order offices
NBAC 114-2-1 and NBAC 114-2-2: Station managers' letterbooks, including correspondence with General Superintendent in Newcastle, monthly station reports and rainfall figures (1911-1921)
NBAC 114-16: Rainfall returns and observations (1898-1954). Covers Warrah homestead, Brown's Ridge, Jack's Creek, Harrison's, Black Creek, Highlands and Windy
NBAC 160-311: Rainfall record book (1883-1947). Includes Warrah, Corona, Bladensburg, Headingly and Highfields stations
NBAC 1-278-1 and NBAC 1-278-2: Warrah rainfall returns and rain registers (1877-1953)
NBAC 1-362: Warrah general information book relating to stock, including rainfall register (1898-1919)
NBAC 1-380: Warrah statistics on rainfall, stock sales and purchases and improvements (1916-1918)
NBAC 1-410: Corona Station rainfall returns including out-stations (1911-1953). Includes rainfall chart from 1883. Out-stations include Silsoe, Marmboo, Oolaberri, Highfields, Woolshed, Grongal and Eight-mile
NBAC 1-434 Bladensburg Station rainfall records (1897-1953)
NBAC 1-444 Headingly Station rainfall returns (1910-1953)
Alpana Station, Flinders Ranges, South Australia
N355-7: History of the property, including rainfall records
NBAC 5-20: Kilcummin Station papers relating to bores, rainfall, rent, Yacamunda Station, payments to Sutherland and finances (1880-1927)
NBAC 6: Rainfall was recorded in the monthly returns for stations, including Angledool Station, including Lianillo, Arumpo and Pan Ban, Barratta, Bogamildi, Boolcarrol, Burrabogie South, Calga, Yerinan, Charlton, Dunlop and Nocoleche, Dunumnral, Florida, Maneroo, Milroy, Mossqiel, Nelyambo, Retro, Ringorah, Summer Vale, Tinenburra, Terala, Toorale, Yanda, Yerinan,
Search the PDF list of this collection (link above) to see descriptions of other items referring to rainfall in this deposit
NBAC 97-7: Table of rainfall figures for Retro station (1878-1925)
NBAC 132-16:Rainfall records kept at the company's stations (1893-1969)
NBAC 162-2802: Daily rainfall statistics for Company and selected properties (1957-1970)
N110: Australian Mercantile Land and Finance Brisbane and Townsville Offices deposit
The Townsville Office was opened in 1924 to serve the sheep farmers in the North Queensland district. The office experienced a high level of indebtedness of its clients, a severe drought and the financial pressures of the depression. The poor performance of the office resulted in liquidation in 1938. Warrong Station, situated in the Mitchell district of Queensland, was indebted to Australian Estates Co Ltd from 1917 to 1929 and the records were created at the Brisbane Office of the company during the period of the debt.
N145-298: Island Agencies Department Nerada Tea Estates Pty Ltd (1969-1970). Includes rainfall figures in Innisfail in 1970
Station diaries record weather 1842-1845, 1869-1942
Use quick search box to search for weather to see more information about station diaries
NBAC N74-335 to NBAC N74-348: 14 volumes of rainfall records of CSR Mills and plantations in New South Wales, Queensland and Fiji (1882-1966). Digital copies available on Open Research
NBAC N268-249 to NBAC N268-260: Macknade Mill weather observations (1897-1989)
NBAC N268-261 to NBAC N268-271: Victoria Mill weather observations (1930-1996)
NBAC 142-2974 to NBAC 142-2975: Harwood weather reports to Head Office (1882 - 1919)
NBAC N305-U2-0-5: Fruit Canning Division data re monthly rainfall, length of season, area planted and harvested (c. 1940s)
The CSR collections also contain many photographs, including of weather events. Please see the separate Photographs section for more information
NBAC 139-2251: New South Wales Pastoral Stations - Shows statistics of average monthly and annual rainfall for selected stations (c. 1924)
NBAC 113-23B: Monthly reports, giving rainfall, stock numbers, state of pasturage, water position and other information (1938-1939)
NBAC 113-24: Weekly reports, giving rainfall, state of pasturage, stock sales, lambing, shearing etc (1939-1964)
NBAC 113-83: Rainfall observations (1886-1963)
NBAC 98-9: Papers about rainfall in South Australia and the Northern Territory, wool marketing, Kangaroo Island and other matters (1938-1947)
Wilson was a jackeroo, station manager, pastoral inspector, pastoral consultant and general manager of pastoral companies. This collection includes papers relating to Wilson's work for the New Zealand & Australian Land Company and Dalgety Australia.
NBAC N393-36: Drought Feeding (M J Wilson's notes on costs, types of feed, government information & clippings) (1965-1968)
N393-43: Rainfall figures at the company stations (1970)
Rainfall figures for Oakwood, Boatman, Bangate, Midkin, Telleraga, Yarraldool, Wingadee, Quabothoo, Womboin, Gunbar, Willandra, Tchelery, Pevensey, The Yanko, Bundure, Grong Grong, Yammatreet, Dromore and Yathroo stations
N393-148: Small map (privately drawn?) of the Carandotta and Binyeah holding which includes information about rainfall
Clothing and footwear retailer
NBAC N249-18 to NBAC N249-20: Daily Trading Registers, also recording daily weather conditions (1915-1941, 1969-1971)
NBAC N385-210: Buddah rainfall (1880-1960). Journal recording monthly and annual rainfall. Also includes some newspaper cuttings relating to weather
NBAC N385-211 and NBAC N385-212: Weather books (1924-1940)
NBAC N385-273: Journal re rainfall, seasons, weather for Loomeah and Buddah, including averages from 1880s (1939-1973)
NBAC 161-269: Rainfall record book (1874-1951). Includes stations: Goonoo Goonoo, Currawillinghi, Moorlands, Avon Downs, Mount Margaret, Caldervale, Coonamble (Sandy Camp, Narraway and Wootan) and Brewon.
NBAC 161-270: Statements of rainfall at Goonoo Goonoo, Caldervale, Avon Downs, Sandy Camp, Narraway and Wootan (1925-1947)
NBAC 128-33-1: Schedules detailing leases and lands occupied, carrying capacity, stock records, shearing and rainfall figures and internal arrangements for Goonoo Goonoo, Moorlands, Currawillinghi and Eagle Grange (c. 1853-1928)
NBAC 115-30-9: Shearing and rainfall schedule, listing numbers advised by cable, actual number shorn, average per sheep, with rainfall figures, and remarks for years (1913-1929)
NBAC 115-47: Eagle Grange station diaries, with details of work performed and rainfall figures (1932-1936)
NBAC 3-66: Rainfall returns, Thurulgoona, Quantambone, Tondeburine and Bedford Park Stations (1881-1944)
NBAC 42-9: Western properties stock returns to Bovril Australian Estates Ltd (1944-1952). Properties include Victorian River Downs and Walgra Stations and the returns include details of cattle, horses and mules, including number transferred, branded and sold, and comments on stock condition and rainfall.
NBAC 87-1-1 to NBAC 87-1-4: Day books, recording sales of stores and supplies of rations as well as rainfall figures, killings for rations and stock branded (1909-1925)
NBAC 87-6-1 to NBAC 87-6-21: Diaries, including work schedules of employees, rainfall figures, arrival of mail, arrival and departure of people (1920-1960)
NBAC 154-134 to NBAC 154-137: Statistical books showing rainfall, lambing and weaning results, stock produce sales and shearing returns (1908-1968)
NBAC N375-18: Lansdowne stock and rainfall returns (1968-1971)
NBAC N375-26: Lansdowne inspection reports, includes reports on stock, rainfall, equipment and staffing (1958-1970)
NBAC N375-85: Lansdowne stock and rainfall returns (1968-1971)
NBAC N375-208: Rainfall in Queensland published by the Queensland Primary Producers' Cooperative Association (1947)