How items come into our care

An archival storage box and collection of folders containing files

The Archives has the biggest single body of records documenting the history of Australia. There are more than 40 million items in 80,000 series. They are the records of almost 10,000 past and present government agencies and Commonwealth persons. In 2011–12, the public and agencies accessed more than 2.4 million collection items online or through our reading rooms and lending services.

Our holdings grow through the transfer of records from the custody of government agencies and Commonwealth persons into the Archives. The Archives undertakes to manage, preserve and make accessible records in its custody.

Read about the transfer of Commonwealth records.

The Archives has developed a range of operations and preservation policies that govern our operations and projects.

Copyright National Archives of Australia 2017