THE fact that the papers in the two series of this Part of the Record Group were not registered seems to have been largely the result of accident. Although some were obviously then considered of too small an importance to be incorporated in the main series at the time, others must have remained unregistered because they passed through irregular channels. No index or other means of reference exists for either series.
The problem of bushranging was one which, inherited from earlier administrations, troubled the early part of Arthur's. These papers, very few of which are registered, were apparently not incorporated in the main series (CSO1) because of their disparate and special nature. They comprise, chiefly, letters from settlers reporting the bushrangers' depredations, offering suggestions for dealing with the problem, and volunteering to take part in organised drives against them; claims for rewards for their apprehension; correspondence from District Police Magistrates in reply to a circular of 10 March 1826, seeking information as to their movements. The activities of the bushranger Brady's gang figures prominently. There is no index or other means of reference.
Notes on the fly-leaves of these volumes refer to the contents as "Miscellaneous notes". In the main the contents are communications addressed to the Colonial Secretary on official subjects but on a personal basis; some are confidential. Though not usually of the first importance, many are of more value than some that were registered in the main series, and seem to have been bound in this series merely because their registration was overlooked. Examples are: letters from other officials and private settlers asking for favours; drafts and returned originals of the Colonial Secretary's outward semi-private notes; notes from the Lieutenant-Governor, the Private Secretary and other departmental heads asking for the return of papers, seeking copies of documents or making appointments. The third volume (March 1837 - January 1838, January 1839 - March 1840) contains somewhat more important papers, including many letters from the Commandant of Port Arthur Penal Settlement relating to the transfer of prisoners to and from the settlement, and sundry returns of prisoners at Port Arthur; coal receipts (cf. CSO68); and returns from the Principal Superintendent of Convicts of deaths and casualties. There is no index or other means of reference to these papers, which are arranged only roughly chronologically.