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|
|A3269||Q7/E||Industrial Demolitions Handbook Volume 2, April 1944||1944 - 1944|
|D3185||160||Torrens Island Quarantine Station photograph 160 - [portion of title exempt] onset 6 March 1926 - unrecognised till inspection at anchorage 10 April 1926||1926 - 1926|
|A7322||21||General administrative files - Defence Sub-Committee - Unnumbered submissions - Defence infrastructure||Aug 1978 - Aug 1978|
|A8742||1978/493||Information supplied to the Minister on entitlement submissions to determining authorities||1976 - 1976|
|K60||HKM33670||THOMPSON, Allan Drysdale - Service Number - 5/40015||1954 - 1987|
|PP946/1||HSR39698||CORNELL, Francis William Charles - Service Number - W244363, 5871||1980 - 1980|
|PP878/1||MKM33413||WATKINS, William Evan - Service Number - 5/278, W54178, WX41846||1943 - 1972|
|A6122||973||Communist Party of Australia. Western Australia, Bunbury||1949 - 1958|
|A6122||1987||Spoiling Operations Australia - Media O [2pp]||1967 - 1967|
|A816||25/301/555||United States Intelligence - Reports by JIB [Joint Intelligence Board] (Melbourne) Representative - Washington||1953 - 1954|
|A4531||201/2/1NVN PART 2||Saigon - North Vietnam - political general||13 Dec 1968 - 30 Aug 1969|
|PP889/1||MKM33610||PYKE, Donald - Service Number - WX32092, A5549||1941 - 1984|
|P107||MB17332||POLISOU, Paraskevoula beneficiary of POLISOU, John - Service Number - 5144||1990 - 1990|
|A12812||141||Inquiry into Commonwealth Offices, Townsville Qld - Statement of evidence, originating papers, correspondence, submissions, briefing papers, draft report, tabling details||22 Jan 1980 - 28 Apr 1981|
|A3963||S1/3||Australian Oil Refining P/L ?Pty. Ltd.?||1973 - 1974|
|A4080||NN||Australian Post Office Commission of Inquiry Commission of Inquiry Secretariat Overseas Visit - United Kingdom Part 2||1973 - 1973|
|AWM54||179/1/4 PART 2||[Chemical Warfare - General:] Deputy Director of Military Operations: Correspondence on the subject of chemical warfare [Part 2 of 2]||1943 - 1943|
|A13373||21||Professor D G Pearce, Australian National University||23 Jun 1982 - 14 Oct 1982|
|K431||802/75(3) PART 2||Oombulgurri education||1981 - 1983|
|A432||1929/852||Superannuation Act 1922/4 Sect. 60(1). Late Squadron Leader F.E. Sandford, RAAF||1929 - 1929|