The Department of Agriculture and Mines were divided, when the Department of Agriculture became a separate department under the Department of Agriculture Act, 1907 (Act No.6, 1907). The major responsibilities of the Mines Department came to include the following functions: geological and mining surveys and assays, the Mining Museum, examination of coalfields, inspection of collieries and mines, diamond drills, the administration of the Prospecting Vote and Miners' accident relief, collection of royalties, and control and regulation of explosives and inflammable liquids (1) .
Major legislation administered by the Department included the Mines Inspection Act, 1901; State Coal Mines Act, 1912; Mines Rescue Act, 1925; and the Coal Mining and Mining Acts of 1973.
On 19 December 1978 the Mines Department was amalgamated with the Development Section of the Department of Decentralisation and Development Section to form the Department of Mineral Resources and Development. (2) In March 1980 the Development Division was removed from the Department and added to the Department of Industrial Development and Decentralisation. (3) In addition, the Department's title reverted back to "The Department of Mineral Resources". (4) In 1981 a number of functions were transferred to the Department of Industrial Relations (including those performed by the Mines Inspection and Coalfields Branches and the Technological Research Unit). (5)
The Department was combined with the Department of Energy on 19 October 1988 to form the Department of Minerals and Energy (6).
(1) New South Wales Government Gazette No.16, 5 February 1908, p.807
(2) Public Service Lists, 1874 - 1960.
(3) Government Gazette, 19/10/1978
(4) ibid., 14/03/1980.
(6) ibid., 6/11/1981.
(7) ibid., 19/10/1988.
(1) Department of Mineral Resources Annual Report, 1994/5.
(2) Department of Mineral Resources Annual Report, 1979-80, 1982, 1984 - 1987.
(3) Department of Mineral Resources and Energy, 1988.
(4) NSW Public Service Notices, March 1980, October & November 1981, & November 1988.