Under the Australian Archives Act 1983 most Commonwealth records are opened to public scrutiny after twenty years (this was reduced from thirty years in 2010). But the Act also defines ‘exempt’ records that can be withheld from the public for a variety of reasons, including the defence of national security, and the protection of individual privacy. Access under the Act is not an inevitable destination, but a process that may result in records with the access status of ‘closed’.
Here you can explore these closed files. Why can't we look at them? How old are they? What are we really being protected against?
BE WARNED! This is a work in progress. It's part of an ongoing research project by Tim Sherratt (@wragge). As a result, this interface is likely to change. That said, pretty much everything should work, so feel free to poke around and see what you can find. Have fun!
|Series||Control Symbol||Title||Contents dates|
|C156||WHOLE SERIES||[Veteran's Affairs] Personal case files, single number series with 'PX' prefix (British pensioners, 1939-1995 War)||1939 - 1995|
|B1387||83/383 PART 4||Antarctica - United Nations Consideration||1984 - 1984|
|A12817||17||Inquiry into Voting Rights for Aboriginals - Map||22 Aug 1961 - 22 Aug 1961|
|A1209||1963/6274 PART A||Attack on Police Station at Sarawak||1963 - 1963|
|M1256||1980B PART 1||[Personal Papers of Prime Minister Fraser] Correspondence '1980B' [relating to B'nai B'rith International, Simmental cattle, sports cars, Liberal Party, Pacific-Asian Congress of Municipalities Proceedings (Adelaide, September 1979) etc]||02 Jan 1980 - 27 Aug 1980|
|A7324||33||Submissions - Television Equalisation - Australian Council||Jan 1987 - Jan 1987|
|A1209||1985/554 PART 4||Australian Telecommunications Commission - Policy other than finance||1989 - 1990|
|PP872/1||HKM34538||COTTON, Phillip Rodney - Service Number - A22507||1957 - 1959|
|M1383||25 PART 1||[Mrs Tamie Fraser] Correspondence 'W' [P Walda - B Westwood, relating to immigration, Walgett (NSW) Pre-School, pensions, Queen of Canberra Quest (1982), Sydney City Mission, Rhodesia, killing of Canadian baby harp seals, anti-smoking campaign, Werribee Park (Victoria), Western Australian Society for Crippled Children, portrait of Malcolm Fraser by Brian Westwood etc]||07 Jan 1976 - 04 Nov 1982|
|PP902/1||HX62016 VOLUME 1||Frederick Francis Isaacs||1947 - 1966|
|MP491/1||1958/2553||QUEENSLAND LEGISLATION FOR COURT CONTROLLING UNION BALLOTS||1958 - 1958|
|B73||M51698||MALONE, Patrick John||1914 - 1951|
|MP529/2||ZEIGLER/R||Dossier of Zeigler, Robert [Richard Albert Theodor Zeigler] - Dossier No. 832||1939 - 1940|
|A6135||K4/11/83/4||Aboriginal people and torres strait islander peoples - Tribal - Aboriginals on Bathurst Island decorated for corroboree (by N. McLeod)||1983 - 1983|
|A1838||250/11/16 PART 8||USA - Defence - SALT [Strategic Arms Limitation Talks]||1979 - 1981|
|A1533||1954/1099||Office seals||1954 - 1961|
|A13256||201/2/1/3 PART 26||Vientiane - Laos military situation||25 Feb 1970 - 09 Jun 1975|
|B4069||VP/5/24||Programs - 3MP Mornington Peninsula [1.00 cms]||1976 - 1981|
|A5027||95||Box of index cards terrorist activities - Croatian community to Trade Union Training Authority Act S25||1973 - 1983|
|C139||RX65733||TANKO, Vincent Kerr [Repatriation pension file] [1.0cm; box 3536]||1940 - 1948|