Destitution in South Australia
The first Ordinance relating to the maintenance of the destitute was passed in 1843. The Destitute Board was appointed in 1849 and was responsible for overseeing and relieving those who had no means, or relatives, to support themselves. Two forms of relief were available:
“Outdoor” – consisting of rations of food and firewood to those with a roof over their head; and
- “Indoor” – available to the sick, homeless, widowed and elderly residing in the Destitute Asylum.
The Destitute Asylum also operated the Lying-In Home for destitute expectant mothers.
Most records relating to this subject were created by the Destitute Board (GRG28).
Records relating to destitution – series held
|Series ID||Series title and date range||Access||Indexes Available|
|GRG 27/19||Reports by inspectress of licensed foster mothers and wet-nurses, 1881 - 1909||Open||See Special List|
|GRG 28/4||Register of cases of destitution, 1849 - 1857||Open||See Special List|
|GRG 28/5||Register of admissions to the Destitute Asylum, 1870 – 1873, 1881 - 1924||Open after 100 years||See Special List for 1870 to 1909. For later period contact a Reference Officer|
|GRG 28/13||Register of admissions to the Lying-In home, 1886 - 1896||Open||Self-indexed|
|GRG 28/14||Reports on applicants for admission to the Lying-In home, 1900 - 1922||Open after 100 years||None available|
|GRG 28/32||Quarterly record of recipients of relief in the Wallaroo, Moonta and Kadina districts, 1910 – 1922||Open after 100 years||None available|
|GRG 28/33||List of children forwarded from the Destitute Asylum to the Roman Catholic Orphanage, 1867 - 1869||Open||None available|
|GRG 28/34||Register of admissions to Destitute Lying-In Home, Flinders Street, 1865 - 1868||Open||See Special List|
|GRG 29/15||Register of infants born in the Destitute Asylum, 1880 – 1932||Open after 100 years||None available|
|GRG 29/16||Ledgers of maintenance payments by relatives of destitute persons, 1893 –1928||Open after 100 years||None available|
|GRS 14431/1||Register of relief applications - Burra (Redruth)|
district, 1906 – 1917, 1935 - 1953
|Open after 100 years||None available|
The above is a limited selection of the most useful series only. Descriptions and access conditions for these and other series held, as well as agency descriptions and agency inventories, are available via our online catalogue, ArchivesSearch.
Need further assistance?
If you require any assistance with your research, please contact a Reference Officer by:
visiting the State Records’ Research Centre
completing our online enquiry form
calling us on +61 8 8343 6800.
This Fact Sheet can also be downloaded in PDF format - Destitute Asylum pdf 59.45kb