The Australian Cyclopedias are an incredibly important resource for all historians researching Australian history, but just what are they, and what do they contain? Firstly the definition of 'cyclopedia' from the dictionary states that it is a reference work (often in several volumes) containing articles on various topics (often arranged in alphabetical order) dealing with the entire range of human knowledge or with some particular specialty. This pretty much sums up what these Cyclopedias are … multi-volume sets, which contain so much biographical and social history of the era, that nothing really compares.
Released as individual states, they do vary a little, but primarily each contains information on services within the state, such as military, medical, banking, pastoral, government, educational, ecclesiastical, railways, post and telegraph, geographical, lands department and so much more. They also contain thousands of photographs (mostly of people), together with thousands of biographies - so the Cyclopedias are undoubtedly one of the major research tools which should be consulted if researching Australians who lived in New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania or Western Australia from 1900 through to 1931.
This compendium set consisting of 7 individual Cyclopedias of different states (except two for Tasmania), comes on 11 CDs, and contains a total nearly 10,500 pages. Some of these titles are extremely rare, and are likely to be found only in select libraries, but thanks to Archive CD Books Australia, they have been scanned as facsimile images, made fully searchable, and have now been released on CD for all to use.
The total cost of these Cyclopedias individually together is several hundred dollars, but if you buy them as a Compendium you SAVE heaps!!!
Titles contained in this Compendium (each Cyclopedia is also available individually):
Cyclopedia of New South Wales 1907
Cyclopedia of South Australia 1907-09
Cyclopedia of Tasmania 1900
Cyclopedia of Victoria 1903
Cyclopedia of Western Australia 1912-13
Fox's History of Queensland 1919-23
The Tasmanian Cyclopedia 1931
Originally produced by Archive CD Books Australia in 2006, this title has now been remastered and
re-released, and includes better searching capability. Each CD contains high quality scanned images of the whole of the original book, and each has been bookmarked for easy navigation. Pages can be searched, rowsed, enlarged and printed out if required.