Hundreds of rare Australian artifacts, including letters, photos and recordings of historic moment, appear to have gone missing from the National Archives. Around 750 of the millions of items that document Australian political, cultural and sports history have dropped off the official register. Among the seemingly missing files is a 1950s report on secret plans for nuclear weapons and a 1932 report into an Australian cricket tour which starred Don Bradman.
Len Marsden from the National Archives says there's a perfectly logical explanation for what appears to be missing. There's over 39 million records, so a total of 750 missing items is a very low percentage. The items are held in over 380 kilometres of repository shelving.
In addition, items listed as "missing" in the catalog frequently are found to not be missing at all. In some cases, the items are physically located on the shelf, exactly where they should be, but the listing in the catalog is missing. It's often difficult to tell if an item is missing or if it's catalog entry is the only thing missing.
You can read more in an article in The World Today at http://www.abc.net.au/worldtoday/content/2011/s3389610.htm
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