.19 Correspondence Registers 1917-1949 35''
.20 Despatch Book and Coroner's Registers 1922-1928 2"
.21 Inquest Registers, Intelligence Report, Ukwa Confederation Officer's Diary Akwete District, Political Rulings Book, Akwete District Palaver Book, Aba District Miscellaneous Correspondence Notes and Agreements





.22 Marriage Registers, Notice of Marriage File Register, and Firearms Register 1920-1952 9"



Ahoada District was created in 1906 as part of the Eastern or Calabar District. It was surrounded by the Districts of Owerri, Degema, Brass and Abo. In 1931 it was constituted into a Division in the
Owerri Province. In 1947 Ahoada became a Division in the Rivers Province.


1-14 Correspondence of the Ahoada District
1923-1961 1859 files



:Bende District was situated between the Cross and Imo Rivers. It was contiguous with the District of Afikpo, Arochuku, Ikot Ekpene, Aba, Owerri and Okigwi. Bende was first visited by a British Officer, A.G. Leonard in 1896. During the Aro Expedition, Bende town was used as a base for attack on Arochuku between 1901 and 1902. In 1906 Bende became a District in Owerri Province. In 1914 Bende district was being administered from Afikpo until 1916. In 1955 Bende District became a Division and headquarters of the Bende County Council.

Records relating to Bende District were arranged and described under Umuahia Divisions as /lUMDIV/I. Persons searching for information on the Bende District should make use of the List on Umuahia Division (UMDIV).


1-7 Correspondence of the Bende District
1911-1956 1,133 files
8 Bende District Criminal Judgment Books 1903-1954 21 volume/s
9 Bende District Civil Judgment Books 1924-1945 5"
10 Criminal Appeal Books 1940-1942 1"
11 Civil Appeal Judgment Books 1937-1945 4"
12 Criminal and Civil Appeal Judgment Books 1931-1942 3"
13 Criminal Cause Book 1924-1938 3"
14 Civil Cause Book 1934 1"
15 Blue Book Returns 1932 1"



Brass District situated in the extreme south-west corner of the Eastern Province, occupied the greater part of the delta region of the River Niger. It first became a district in 1906 in the Eastern of Calabar Province. In 1914 when Owerri Province was created it was transferred to the newly created Province. In 1947 when Rivers Province was created it was again transferred to the Rivers Province. In 1956 Brass became a Division and the headquarters of the Central Ijaw County Council.
1-11 Correspondence of the Brass District


1,586 files
.12 Brass District Criminal Judgment Books 1900-1955 17 volume/s
.13 Brass District Civil Judgment Books 1900-1945 17"
.14 District Officer's Criminal Appeal Book 1938-1954 1"
.15 Civil Appeal Record Books 1934-1953 7''
.16 Civil Cause Books 1906-1955 5''
.17 Criminal Cause Books 1904-1922 13''
.18 Register of Appeals and Reviews by the District Officer 1946-1953 4''
.19 Marriage Certificate Register 1903-1930 1''



Degema District was first created in 1906 in the Eastern Province. It extended from the Rivers Santa Barbara and Sombreiro on the west to the Rivers Bonny and Buguma, Degema (Dist. Headquarters), Egbedda and Omo-Nelu. Degema was in Owerri Province unti11947 when Rivers Province was created and it was transferred to the new Province. In 1956 Degema Division was created and Degema town became the headquarters of the Oil Rivers County Council.


1 Correspondence of the Degema District
1902-1956 150 files



Okigwi District was situated at the head of the Rivers Imo and Orashi. It was bound by Districts of Onitsha, Awka, Udi, Afikpo, Bende and Owerri. The Okigwi District wa.s created in 1906 as part of the Eastern District. In 1914 it became part of the Owerri Province. Its principal towns were Amoda, Eziachi, Eziama, Ihube and Ishiagu.


1-12 Correspondence and Judicial Records
of the Okigwi District Office
1906-1959 2,515 files
.13 Criminal Judgment Books of the Okigwi District    
.14 Civil Judgment Books of the Okigwi District 1907-1945 8 volume/s
.15 Criminal Cause Books 1907-1950 7''
.16 Civil Cause Books and Civil Process Register 1906-1948 4''
.17 Appeal Records Books 1935-1947 5''
.18 Inward and Outward Correspondence Registers, File Registers, Letter Books and Telegram Register 1912-1953 45''
.19 Intelligence Book for Okigwi District 1908-1930 3''
.20 Cash Books 1909-1948 10"
.21 Inquest Register, Native Court and Provincial Court Return Register 1920-1941 4''
.22 Register Certificate, Marriage and Registrar's Certificate 1924-1942 44''
.23 Statistical Book for Provincial and Native Courts of Okigwi    
.24 Okigwi Divisional Minute Books, Diaries, Warrants, Register of Court Members, Register of Warrant Chiefs and Register of Civilians in Okigwi 1908-1948 16 volume/s
.25 Gun License Book, Non-Native Income Tax Assessment Books and Register Book for Conservancy 1908-1946 4''



By 1906 Orlu was created a sub-district under Okigwi. However, in 1914 it became a full district in the Owerri Province. In 1955 Orlu became a Division and the headquarters of the Orlu County Council.


1-9 Correspondence and Judicial Records of the Orlu District Office
1920-1952 817 files
.10 Civil Record Books 1911-1919 3 volume/s
.11 Criminal Judgment Book 1921-1924 1''
.12 Civil Cause Book 1911-1912 1''
.13 Diary, General Complaints Book and Orlu Sworn Information Book 1931-1936 3''
.14 Intelligence Books, Intelligence Report Books for Orlu District 1911-1936 3''



Owerri District was situated on the Western border of the Eastern Province. It shared boundaries with the District of Bende, Okigwi, Aba, Degema, Ahoada and the District of Abo in the Central Province. Part of the Province was taken away to form part of the sub-district of which is attached to Okigwi District. Owerri District was first created in 1906. In 1914 the Owerri province was created while Owerri District continued to exist until 1955 when Owerri Division was created, Owerri County Council and Owerri Urban were also created.


1-11 Correspondence of the Owerri District
1901-1960 1,350 files
.12 Criminal Judgment Books 1902-1953 38 volumes/s
.13 Civil Judgment Books 1908-1941 19''
.14 Criminal Cause Books 1929-1943 7''
.15 Civil Cause Books 1909-1934 2''
.16 Court Record Books 1914-1947 15''
.17 Appeal Record Books 1930-1956 10''
.18 Correspondence Registers 1914-1945 6''
.19 Warrant Chief's Registers 1906-1947 5''
.20 Marriage Registers 1917-1937 49''
.21 Registrar's Register 1908-1941 88''
.22 Intelligence Books 1907-1930 2''
.23 District Officer's Circulars 1915-1934 6''
.24 Letter Books 1909-1912 2''
.25 Inquest Books 1925-1946 3''
.26 Cash Books 1932-1942 2''
.27 Statistics Books 1926-1934 3''
.28 Miscellaneous 1908-1949 10''



The 1954 Constitution established the Federation of Nigeria consisting of the Eastern Region, Northern Region and the Western Region. The office of Governor-General of the Federation was constituted, with Governor's in-charge of the three Regions.

The Governor's Office, Enugu was responsible, among other functions, for the security matters, including Police; Native Court Appeals to the governor; Lunatics; Remission of Sentences on Convicts, Petitions of Rights and the Administration of Oaths. The Privy Council under the Governor's Office, advised the Governor in the exercise of his prerogative of mercy.

Records in this group are mainly cases and judgments sent to the Governor's Office remission or for review.



1-3 Remission of sentences and Native Court Appeals for Review of Judgments
1933-1962 33o files



The Premier's Office was the highest institution of government in the Eastern Region. The office, which was the nerve-centre of regional government and administration, was created by the 1954 Constitution. It was charged with responsibilities relating to policies, co-ordination of the work of all formal organs and agencies of regional government, regulation of inter state as well as federal-regional relations, organising the Regional Executive Council, control of protocol, appointing commissions of inquiry. The Premier's Office was also responsible for the House of Assembly, the Eastern Region Development Cooperation, the Regional Gazette, Divisional boundaries, allocation of offices and quarters, and the Establishment Branch (before it was constituted into a Ministry).

The Premier's Office was abolished after the first military take-over in 1976. Under the Military regime the former offices of the Civilian Governor and Regional Premier were merged to form the Military Governor's Office.
The records described here as MILGO~ are mainly records that originated from the Premier's Office and Office of the Civilian Goyernor. They were accessioned from the Office of the Military Governor.

1-13 Correspondence and Court Records sent to the Governor's Office for Review
1913-1966 448 FILES



The Divisional Administration Department was established following the introduction of the new local government system in Eastern Region which replaced the old Native Administration system. The Eastern Nigeria Local Government Law No. 16 of 1950 introduced the new local government system which was modeled on the British system. The Divisional Administration Department, which was placed under the control of the Cabinet Office, was created to co-ordinate the activities of the regional government functionaries working in the Division, as well as the supervision and monitoring of the activities of the Local Councils. In 1971 the Local Government Service Commission was abolished and its function were transferred to the Divisional Administration Department in the Premier's Office.

Records of the D.A.D. are mainly general correspondence relating to activities of the Department.


1-52 Correspondence Relating to the Activities of the Department 1919-1971 1,662 files



Government Participation in the educational development of the Protectorate of Southern Nigeria began in 1899 when a Government school was started in Bonny and was placed under the management of the political authorities' who were advised by a School Committee. In 1901 the High Commissioner appointed an Inspector of Education, and in 1903 a Board of Education was formed at Calabar and a Code (Education Rule 1903) was drawn up and approved. The merging of the Education Department of Lagos and Southern Nigeria took place in 1906. Following the merger the title of Inspector of Schools was changed to that of Director of Education. An Education Department was created.

In 1954 the Education Department became the Ministry of Education. There were Education Ministries at the Centre and at the Regions. In the Eastern Region of Nigeria there were Provincial Education Offices at the headquarters of each Province. They were responsible for school inspections at the provincial level.

1-27 Correspondence on all matters relating to Education in Eastern Nigeria
1917-1966 21,609 files



1-10 Correspondence on all Educational Matters 1926-1963 866 files



1-9 Correspondence on all Educational Matters 1920-1960 1,351 files
10 Inwards and Outwards Correspondence Register 1934-1956 12 volume/s
11 Miscellaneous Registers and Books 1905-1958 6''



1-9 Correspondence on all matters relating to Education
1923-1961 909 files



Prior to the creation of the Ministry of Establishment, all establishment matters were the responsibility of the Establishment Division of the Ministry of Finance. In 1957 the Division was transferred to the office of the Deputy Premier where it remained until it became an independent Ministry of Establishment. The Ministry was responsible for all establishment matters including conditions of service for the Eastern Regional Public Service. Records are mainly correspondence relating to all aspects of the Ministry's policies, transactions and activities..


1-23 Correspondence on the activities of the Ministry
1922-1969 4,424 files



The Ministry of Finance was created in 1954 with the introduction of the ministerial government in Nigeria. The functions of Ministry included the preparation of estimates of revenue and expenditure and taxation until the creation of the Ministry of Establishment it was responsible for Establishment and Conditions of Service for the Eastern Regional Public Service. The Ministry also acted as agent for the Federal government in certain matters including customs and Excise, Post Office Savings Bank, Banks and Banking, Currency Control audit on public accounts and boards of survey.

Other responsibilities included control of expenditure, financial instructions, indents, licensing policy, loan policy, losses of public funds and stores,. taxation, public debts, tenders and Colonial Welfare and Development Finance.


MOF Correspondence of the Ministry of Finance 1922-1981 3,3,57 files



The Ministry of Health came into being with the introduction of the ministerial government 1954. The policy of the Ministry was to expand and co-ordinate Medical Services in association with Local Government Bodies, Local Communities and Voluntary Agencies so as to bring health facilities within the reach of all. The Ministry thus performed the dual role of providing and administering existing services.

The Ministry of Health and its executive arm, the Department of Medical Services, had responsibility for the adulteration of food-stuff, hospitals and dispendaries, mental health, public health and sanitation tion including medical and dental and other ancillary services. Other functions include the registration of births, deaths and burials, colonial development and welfare development in medical, health, leprosy and tuberculosis.


1-32 Correspondence on the activities of the Ministry of Health
1914-1965 1,445 files



The Ministry of Internal Affairs for the Eastern Region of Nigeria was established on 1st September, 1956. Until the Ministry of Local government was created, the Ministry of Internal Affairs was responsible, among other things, for local government.

The Ministry was responsible for a wide variety of subjects such as the administration of justice (including Customary Courts), the Legal Department (subject to certain limitations imposed by the 1954 Constitution), the printing and Stationary Department, broadcasting and television, public collections, liquor licensing, public lotteries, and raffles, unlicensed guides and public records. In addition to other things, three of the Statutory corporations in the Region, namely, the Information Service, Cinema and Printing Corporations, were placed under the control of the Ministry of Internal Affairs.
Other functions of the Ministry included recognition of chiefs, responsibilities for crown lands, and land acquisition, Customary Land Tenure, the Land (Perpetual Succession Ordinance), Land Registration, Rent for Lands and buildings, Site Boards Surveys, Town and Country Planning, National Parks, Trigonometric, Cad astral and topographical Survey, as well as the control of voluntary movement of persons between Regions, the Southern Cameroon and Lagos.

Records of the Ministry are mainly general correspondence relating to the major functions and activities of the Ministry.


1-5 Correspondence on the activities of the Ministry 1928-1966 1,373 files



The administration of justice in the former Eastern Nigeria dates back to 1901 when Native Courts of the former Niger Protectorate were constituted by Proclamation No. 26 of that year. These courts exercised a jurisdiction concurrent with that of the Supreme Court whose jurisdiction was limited to the trading centres and the coast towns such as the Old Calabar. In 1914, Sir Frederick Lugard extended to the Southern Nigeria the judicial system which had operated in the Northern Protectorate since 1900. The aim was to establish a uniform judiciary throughout Nigeria. Consequently Provincial Courts were established throughout the Southern Provinces which replaced the Protectorate Courts. Native Courts were also established. The courts were subject to supervision by Political Officers. While the Supreme Court was constituted a Court of Appeal from the Provincial Courts in Civil matters. The Supreme court Bill of March, 1914 limited the jurisdiction of the Court to the Colony and areas where there were large numbers of non-natives and "native-foreigners". Under the Provincial Court system, full power.of the court were exercised by the Resident of the province.

Up to 1956 the Legal Department was placed under the Ministry of Internal Affairs. In 1957 the Ministry of Justice was created and the judicial functions of the Ministry of Internal Affairs were transferred to the new Ministry.

These functions included the administration of justice, the supervision of the Customary Courts which replaced the Native court System, control of the legal department, implementation of the Collective Punishment Ordinance, Administration of Estates, Evidence, fingerprints, Criminal Records as well as Trustees.

The Judicial Records comprise records of the Eastern Nigeria Ministry of Justice and records of the different categories of courts. The Court Records are made up of Court Note Books or minute books which contain court proceedings, Court Record Books containing summary of the cases recorded in the court note books. Summons books for criminal and civil cases, General Note books containing the political officers note on all informal and petty cases. In addition it contains official diary kept by the political officer containing a brief record of all tours, their objectives and dates and details of all disturbances and so on.


1-127 General Correspondence of the Ministry of Justice and Judicial Records
1914-1974 5,190 files
.128-129 Inward and Outward Correspondence Registers
1963-1975 6 volumes/s
.130 File Registers, Appeal Record Books and Casue Lists 1960-1973 6''


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