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|
|A10756||LC220 PART 2||Australian contribution to United Nations Peacekeeping Forces [Submission Nos. 2941 and 3487 refer]||21 Aug 1978 - 27 Sep 1979|
|PP864/1||M7556||WATERHOUSE, Alex [aka Alec] - Service Number - 4249||1915 - 1961|
|PP902/1||MX58337||Alan James Arland Stubbs||1940 - 1979|
|B73||H109929||Davidson, James Duncan||1943 - 1989|
|A7342||M42||History of, and services provided by the Repatriation Commission and the Repatriation Department - Unidentified negatives and photographs Repatriation Department, Central Office - Raymond Clarke - Right below knee - lower hip||1960 - 1960|
|A1838||766/1 PART 12||Communist China - Economic Relations with Australia||1971 - 1972|
|A14039||5353||Cabinet Memorandum 5353 - SCIS Report to MInisters on the activities of the Intelligence and Security Agencies in 1986-87 - Decision 10780/SEC||26 Oct 1987 - 15 Mar 1988|
|A1533||1957/3213||HUTCHINS, Reginald Raymond||1957 - 1957|
|B741||V/4735||Frances D. Nhilson||1928 - 1937|
|A12691||R119897||Siddons, Stephen R119897||1977 - 1998|
|A12805||4||Miscellaneous Papers||1926 - 1931|
|A1838||189/10/2 PART 2||Pakistan: Relations with Australia - Economic||1948 - 1963|
|A6135||K5/8/83/78||Aboriginal people and torres strait islander peoples - Tribal - Aboriginal dancer ready for corroboree||1983 - 1983|
|A1838||694/2/4/1 PART 2||[portion of title exempt] Intelligence Estimates [0.5cm]||1971 - 1984|
|A1838||100/6||Relations with foreign services [imposed title, original title wholly exempt]||1952 - 1989|
|A6122||698||C P of A [Communist Party of Australia] Queensland General Branch formerly known as Brisbane Hospital Branch||1949 - 1949|
|A1209||1972/6429||Prime Minister's visit to Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia - June 1972 - Briefing notes||1972 - 1972|
|A13147||NSR 421||National Security Act Regulations & Ordinances - National Security (General) Regulations. Control of Woollens Materials Order and Control of Woven Woollen Materials (Civil Needs) Order (No 2). Regulation 59||07 Mar 1942 - 28 Jun 1943|
|MP298/1||NN||Programme report 1945||01 Jan 1800 - 01 Jan 1800|
|A13883||213/1/2/1C||Singapore Five Power defence post AMDA (Anglo Malayan/Malaysian defence agreement) arrangements - postal services||29 Apr 1971 - 10 Jul 1974|