This series consists of index cards of individuals, syndicates and companies holding mining leases and licences, and was created by the Mines Department (VA 612). The purpose of the cards was to provide a means of accessing mining records relating to gold and other mineral leases and licences by providing the relevant licence or lease number. Unless it was otherwise indicated by the reference on the card, all lease numbers refer to gold mining leases.
Information recorded on the cards includes the licence or lease number. Licence numbers and leases (other than gold mining leases) have the initials of the type of licence or lease next to them, for example TL = Tailing Licence, ML = Mineral Lease. Lease numbers include an abbreviation representing the mining district, for example Bgo = Bendigo/Sandhurst. Abbreviations for mining districts were not uniform. Licences or leases that had been voided or were no longer held by the individual or company were crossed out. Cards were sometimes re-used for other members of the same family, or someone who had the same surname.
From the 1860s, mining had been organised by mining district. Each mining district had a separate numerical lease number sequence. There were 7 mining districts: Ararat, Ballarat, Beechworth, Maryborough, Castlemaine, Gippsland, and Sandhurst/Bendigo. The Mines Act 1958 (Act No.6320) brought about a system change as mining districts were abandoned. New lease plans were created (at this time) and arranged in numerical order (i.e., 1, 2, 3, etc.) and maps were then based on parish rather than mining district.
The relationship of this series and VPRS 7845 Index to Mining Leases, Mineral Leases, Tailings Licences and Other Leases and Licences is subject to further research.