This is a general guide and may not apply in all circumstances. We recommend that you consult with the Pictures & Manuscripts Branch to determine how your records relate to these guidelines, as some exceptions may apply.

If you are considering offering organisational records to the Library, please submit your offer or enquiry via our online Collection Offer portal or make an appointment to see our acquisition staff. Please contact us prior to sending or delivering any material to the Library.

What records to deposit?

  • minute books and policy manuals
  • Constitution, Terms of Reference
  • office, subject or correspondence files
  • files of individual officers (e.g. Secretary, Treasurer, Publications Officer) or members of staff
  • reports and submissions compiled or submitted by the organisation
  • financial records
  • speeches or conference papers presented by the organisation
  • historical material including published or unpublished histories of the organisation
  • press cuttings if identified and relevant to the organisation
  • photographs that are identified and dated

This list is only a guide. In addition to these records, you should aim to keep what are known as 'operational records' that are unique to your organisation and its business. In general, you should preserve records of policy and decision making bodies within your organisation.

Records the Library may not be interested in:

  • records of short term value that may be destroyed after 5-10 years eg low level financial records such as chequebooks, bank statements, receipt books
  • routine administrative files of no long term value eg subscription files, booking forms, travel arrangements; duplicates eg excess copies of publications
  • unsorted bundles of loose papers (if these are worth keeping they should be sorted before sending to the Library)

If in doubt please feel free to ask us at any time.

Please assist us by:

  • centralising the transfer of records by having one office-bearer responsible
  • providing any additional contextual information available, such as names of office bearers
  • packing the records into our archives boxes, which the Library will provide.

Please refer to our Guidelines for boxing and listing papers for practical information on how to prepare the records for transfer once they have been accepted.


If you have any questions about the transfer process, the types of records to send or any issue of concern please do not hesitate to contact us.

Curatorial and Collection Research 
National Library of Australia
Canberra ACT 2600