Magill Old Folks Home

Social Welfare

During the latter half of the nineteenth century the South Australian government established a number of social welfare agencies.  These cared for:

Lunatics* – Adelaide, then Parkside, then Glenside Lunatic Asylums

The aged – Magill Old Folk’s Home

Those left destitute – The Destitute Asylum

Children requiring custodial control – The Industrial School, The Girls Reformatory and the Boys Reformatory

Orphans – through the Boarding-Out System

*the word "Lunatic" reflects the term in use at the time of the record creation.

Care of Aged Persons in South Australia

The Magill Old Folks’ Home opened in 1917 and was the government’s institution for aged residential care. Upon opening, elderly residents of the Destitute Asylum were moved to the Magill Old Folks’ Home. The Magill Old Folks’ Home continued in operation at Magill until 1986 and was replaced in 1989 by a new facility at Elizabeth South.

Most records relating to this subject were created by Magill Old Folks’ Home (GA 688) and the Social Welfare Department (GRG 29).

Magill Old Folks’ Home – series held

Series IDSeries title and date rangeAccessIndexes Available           
GRG 29/5Index to applications for admission - Magill Home, 1923 - 1951Open after 100 yearsNot applicable           
GRG 29/53Correspondence with applicants for admission to the Magill Home 1952 - 1953Open after 100 yearsNone available           
GRG 29/54Register of Admissions to the Magill Home, 1924 - 1950Open after 100 yearsNone available           
GRG 29/55Rough journals of arrivals, departures, etc at the Magill Home, 1951 - 1955Open after 100 yearsNone available           
GRG 29/56Daily and weekly advice slips from the Superintendent, Magill Home showing arrivals, departures, etc, 1953 - 1956Open after 100 yearsNone available           
GRG 29/57Weekly returns of admissions, departures, etc. at the Magill Home presented to the Children's Welfare and Public Relief Board, 1952 - 1954Open after 100 yearsNone available           
GRG 29/58Return of patients in the Infirmary, Magill Home, 1951 - 1954Open after 100 yearsNone available           
GRG 29/62Register of bodies sent from the Magill Home and forwarded to the Anatomical School Adelaide University, 1938 - 1951Open after 100 yearsSee Jill Statton, Deaths in Public Institutions: South Australian Record Series No. 4', available on Research Centre shelves           
GRS 4554Register of inmates - Magill Old Folks' Home, 1930 - 1963OpenNone available           
GRS 10421Receipts and issues of clothes etc. - Women's Division, Magill Old Folks' Home, 1917 - 1970OpenNone available           
GRS 10423Home and infirmary movements book - Magill Old Folks' Home, 1965 - 1976OpenNone available           
GRS 10424Register of patient property (alphabetcial by patient) - Magill Old Folks' Home, c. 1965 - 1982OpenNone available           

Many of the records in the series’ listed above are not open for public viewing and permission to view these records must be obtained. Please contact a Reference Officer for advice about seeking permission to view records not open to public access.


The above is a limited selection of the most useful series only.  Descriptions and access conditions for these and other series held, as well as agency descriptions and agency inventories, are available via our online catalogue, ArchivesSearch.

Need further assistance?

If you require any assistance with your research, please contact a Reference Officer by:

This Fact Sheet can also be downloaded in PDF format - Magill Old Folks' Home



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