The Archives Office was established in 1951 by the provisions of the 1943 Public Records Act and currently operates under the Archives Act 1983.
Through the formal statutory position of State Archivist it regulates the disposal of records of all state and local government organisations in Tasmania and provides advice, guidelines and standards for the management of their records. Records which are identified for on-going preservation as the State’s archives are generally held in the Archives Office. The Office has in-house preservation, digitising, and microfilming facilities.
The Archives Office also collects non-government records which are considered to provide documentation of the development of the Tasmanian community. The total holdings of all records amount to about 16,000 linear shelf metres.
The Archives Act provides a right of free public access to these records once any creator-imposed restrictions have lapsed. Access is generally provided through the Archives Office public search room although some online access to digital records is also available.
Online access to the archival management and descriptive system database, Tasmanian Archives Online, became available in May 2004.
For the year ended June 2004, approximately 10,000 visits were made by researchers using the search room services provided by the Archives Office. This figure was slightly less than that recorded in previous years, but the number of records used increased.
The number of written inquires received by the Office also increased, most likely as a result of increased Internet access which reached about 2.2 million hits for the year with increased resources being added to the site.
Further information can be found on the Archives Office of Tasmania web site at http://www.archives.tas.gov.au.