More than 2.2 million names in the database so far.

Biographical Database of Australia

  • BDA is a research tool for historians and genealogists comprising transcripts & indexes of original records and published biographies of deceased individuals who arrived, or were born in, Australia. Advanced search function now available. Advanced search function now available.
  • New in 2024: Free unassisted passengers arriving Sydney 1838-1841 at the peak of an immigration boom. CofE parish registers: St James Melbourne VIC 1837-1842, St Lawrence Sydney 1838-1856, St Andrew Sydney 1842-1856, Wellington NSW 1837-1856. Transcripts of Certificates of Freedom 1834-1840 & absconded convict notices 1822-1841. Ship Deserters, Sydney NSW 1852-1867. Army pay list profiles 2,808 soldiers in Australia 28th & 80th Regiments 1835-1844. Australian Almanack 1827: civil & military establishments in Australian colonies, List of Anglican clergy in the 1850s appointed to NSW parishes 1809-1858.
  • BDA now has: Full text of many baptisms, marriages & burials 1788-1850s (NSW), 1837-1842 (VIC) including marriage witnesses noting whether signed by name or X mark & names of Catholic baptism sponsors/godparents + many TAS BDM records & musters, assisted immigrants to NSW 1832-1896, to Moreton Bay QLD 1848-1859, to Port Phillip VIC 1839-1851, unassisted immigrants NSW 1788-1857, multiple records of most convicts to NSW/Qld/Vic 1788-1840s, most Tasmanian convicts & immigrants 1803-c1824, Norfolk Is 1788-1855, most soldiers stationed in Australia 1788-1844, 160,000 NSW Colonial Secretary records, NSW muster records 1788-1830s + the only full online transcript of UNESCO nominated NSW 1828 census, 10,000 burials & inscriptions 1819-1901 from the Sydney Burial Ground. Full text of 31,000 colonial biographies.
  • View a sample biography to see an accurate level of detail for each.

View a sample biography to see an accurate level of detail for each.

BDA : A non-profit project.

  • May 2024: Latest updates:
    Total now online 2.2 million.
    16 NEW datasets: new records now online. 10,500 unassisted passengers arriving Sydney 1838-1841, new convict records 1822-1841, soldiers in Aus 1835-1844, new BDMs 1830s-50s Melbourne VIC, Sydney & Wellington NSW
    See View Release Details
    More datasets in the pipeline.
  • BDA links records of life events to create a Biographical Report. From one report, subscribers can hyperlink to another biography, to spouses, parents, children, witnesses, employers, employees and so on, through the entire database. See Sample.
  • Future stages of BDA will add more data from all states and territories, expanding from early records towards the present, including Aboriginal people, convicts and immigrants of all nations. Coming soon: User contributions and corrections function.
  • Cultural advice: BDA contains text quoted from historical published and manuscript sources which may contain terms or reflect views that were acceptable in some Australian or colonial cultural contexts at the time they were written down, but may no longer be considered appropriate and do not reflect the views of the Biographical Database of Australia.
  • BDA is committed to acknowledging the First Peoples of Australia.