Application for Registration Form for Mr. Sam Ah Choc dated 11 August 1947. Aliens (non-citizen residents) were closely monitored and were required to report changes of address and travel (both within Australia and overseas). These restrictions were even harsher for non-Europeans and Asian residents who were unable to apply for naturalisation, until 1957. During World War Two Aliens were monitored by State Police under the Commonwealth of Australia National Security (Aliens Control) Regulations.
According to the documentation, Sam Ah Choc was born in 1876 but his arrival in Australia was not known. He was a market gardener by trade but in 1947 was residing at the Mental Hospital in Ballarat.
Foolscap size paper entitled 'Form of Application for Registration' with masthead 'Commonwealth of Australia. National Security (Aliens Control) Regulations'. Words 'Registration completed as far as possible' handwritten at top of page. Form completed with details regarding applicant's name, nationality, birth date, sex, birthplace, home address, business address, occupation, and personal descriptive details. Other details such as marital status, Australian entry date, ship, and port not completed.
These documents are a significant addition to the Museum's immigration documents collection. They are amongst the few documents in the collection to represent Chinese immigration and settlement experiences and illustrate Australia's immigration laws regarding residents categorized as 'aliens'. The collection is also of interest for the insight it offers into the involvement of the police in the administration of these laws. During the 1940s the state police branches administered and monitored 'alien' residents under the Commonwealth of Australia National Security (Aliens Control) Regulations (as well as the wartime enemy alien tracking) - this was prior to the formation of the Dept of Immigration in 1945. Finally, the documents are visually powerful, some including a photograph and fingerprints of one of the residents.
Narrative (NEEDS TO BE DEVELOPED FURTHER):
'Aliens' (that is, non-citizen residents - official policy distinguished between British and aliens until both were redesignated in 1983 as 'non-citizens' until naturalized) were closely monitored, with residential change, travel movement, and departure and re-entry to the country strictly administered as a matter of national security (most of these wartime restrictions on non-citizen residents were finally removed by the 1947 Aliens Act). This should be seen in the context of the 1903 Commonwealth Naturalization Act whereby Asians and other non-Europeans were denied the right to apply for naturalization; it was not until 1957 that non-Europeans of more than 15 years residency could apply for citizenship. White Australia policy laws regarding the spouses of Chinese residents are demonstrated by the fact that one of the men, an Australian resident for over 40 years, appears to have had a wife in China whom he appears to return to visit (In 1903 male non-Europeans living in Australia were no longer permitted to bring their wives and children into the country). During the 1940s the state police branches administered and monitored 'alien' residents under the Commonwealth of Australia National Security (Aliens Control) Regulations (as well as the wartime enemy alien tracking) - this was prior to the formation of the Dept of Immigration in 1945. Finally, the documents are visually powerful, some including a photograph and fingerprints of one of the residents.
Donation from Robert James Larkins, 14/12/2005
Text, printed: Registration completed as far as/possible./COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA/National Security (Aliens Control) Regulations/Form of Application for Registration/(For Alien Resident in Australia).
Type of item
2D Dimensions - Document
203 mm (Width), 343 mm (Height)
Short biography of Robert Larkins supplied by Victorian Police Museum