There’s a website created as a joint venture between Monash University and the University of Queensland called Victorian Places.
You can see it at http://www.victorianplaces.com.au/
It was commenced in the mid-1990s at the National Centre for Australian Studies at Monash University and has been updated using a template that was developed for Queensland Places by the University of Queensland.
Victorian Places aims to provide an historical and current assessment of all settlements in Victoria and addresses both metropolitan and regional growth issues in a readily useable fashion. It includes over 1600 entries (headwords) on Victorian settlements that now have or once had populations of 200 or more at any census. The entries include cities, towns, villages, suburbs and shires both old and new. It includes suburbs not only for Melbourne but for regional cities as well. The entries weave the story of place using extracts from gazetteers and handbooks and are illustrated with a wide range of images including historical postcards, recent photographs and tourist promotional material.
The ‘About Us’ section of the website includes the qualification that the website focusses on white settlement. They provide references for indigenous history of the landscape, and note in the entries themselves the Registered Aboriginal Parties throughout Victoria and attempt to comment on indigenous/settler relations when the sources allow.
So many places! 1600 of them! I’ve whiled away an hour or two here, looking up places large and small. It’s fascinating to have the census information to watch the rise and decline (and sometimes rise again) of locations.