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Research Guides


Malcolm Fraser: Guide to Archives of Australia's Prime Ministers


Chapter 2: Records about Malcolm Fraser in the National Archives of Australia

Minister for Defence, 1969–71

Following the October 1969 federal election, John Gorton appointed Malcolm Fraser Minister for Defence. However, after disagreements with Gorton, Fraser resigned his portfolio on 8 March 1971.

Records

CORRESPONDENCE FILES (DEFENCE), 1957–74
This correspondence file series documents the policy and administration of the Department of Defence. Its content reflects the main functions of the department including policy, joint service matters, finance, supply, production programs and capacity, disposition and organisation of the defence forces, weapons and equipment, and research and development. Subjects under these groupings include appointments, departmental facilities, civil defence, relations with other countries, conditions of service, courts martial, disarmament, economic warfare, furniture and fittings, guided weapons, grants, information, medical and dental, press and publicity, recruiting, repairs and maintenance, security, statistics, treaties and agreements, war crimes and welfare.
Series: A1945
Quantity: 125 metres (Canberra)
Recorded by: 1957–74: Department of Defence (III), Central Office (CA 46)
Department of Defence – personal file – Sir Arthur Harold Tange, 1969–74
Includes appointment of Arthur Tange as Secretary of Defence while Fraser was Minister.
A1945, 258/20/71 PART 8
CORRESPONDENCE FILES (DEFENCE), 1967–73
This correspondence file series documents the policy and administration of the Department of Defence between 1967 and 1973. Its content reflects the main functions of the department including policy, joint service matters, finance, supply, production programs and capacity, disposition and organisation of the defence forces, weapons and equipment, and research and development. Subjects under these groupings include appointments, departmental facilities, civil defence, relations with other countries, conditions of service, disarmament, economic warfare, furniture and fittings, information, medical and dental, press and publicity, recruiting, repairs and maintenance, security, statistics, treaties and agreements, war crimes and welfare.
Series: A1946
Quantity: 125 metres (Canberra)
Recorded by: 1967–73: Department of Defence (III), Central Office (CA 46)
Appointment of Commander Australian Force Vietnam, 1967–72 A1946, 1967/1531
Requests for exemption from national service training, 1965–70 A1946, 1967/3391
Possible withdrawal of Australian forces from Vietnam, 1969 A1946, 1969/2185 PART 1
Regular meetings between Minister for Defence and service ministers, 1969–70 A1946, 1969/2269 PART 1
United States request for use of Australian forces in South Vietnam, 1970–72 A1946, 1970/453
GORTON AND MCMAHON MINISTRIES – CABINET FILES, 'CO' SINGLE NUMBER SERIES, 1968–72
This series of files was maintained by the Secretary to Cabinet/Cabinet Secretariat and successor agencies during the period of the Gorton and McMahon ministries. It contains copies of the submissions placed before Cabinet, the decisions made by Cabinet, and related correspondence and papers. Fraser was a Minister in the cabinets of both Gorton and McMahon.
Series: A5882
Quantity: 32 metres (Canberra)
Recorded by: 1968: Secretary to Cabinet/Cabinet Secretariat (I) (CA 3); 1968–71: Department of the Cabinet Office (CA 1285); 1971–72: Cabinet Office (CA 1472)
F111 aircraft for the Royal Australian Air Force, 1969–70 A5882, CO10 PART 2
F111 aircraft for the Royal Australian Air Force, 1971–72 A5882, CO10 PART 3
Vietnam - Peace negotiations - 1968 A5882, CO60 PART 1
Vietnam peace proposals, 1970–72 A5882, CO60 PART 2
Australian forces for Vietnam - 1968 A5882, CO77
Australian Defence aid to Singapore/Malaysia A5882, CO133 PART 1
Strategic basis of Australian defence policy, 1968–70 A5882, CO344
CABINET FILES, SINGLE NUMBER SERIES WITH 'C' (CABINET) PREFIX, 1968–72
These files were created in the Prime Minister's Department following the separation of the Prime Minister's Department and the Cabinet Office in March 1968. As the Prime Minister's Department retained the function of advising the Prime Minister on Cabinet business, it was supplied by the Cabinet Office with copies of all current Cabinet documents and, where requested, photocopies of documents of earlier Liberal governments commencing in December 1949.
Series: A5619
Quantity: 18 metres (Canberra)
Recorded by: 1968–71: Prime Minister's Department (CA 12); 1971–72: Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet (CA 1401)
Purchase of F111 aircraft for the Royal Australian Air Force, 1970 A5619, C40 PART 1
THIRD GORTON MINISTRY – FOLDERS OF CABINET SUBMISSIONS, 1969–71
This is the series of submissions considered by the Gorton Cabinet following the federal election of 1969 until Gorton was replaced by William McMahon as Prime Minister in March 1971. Fraser was Minister for Defence for most of the period of this Ministry.
Series: A5869
Quantity: 3 metres (Canberra)
Recorded by: 1969–71: Department of the Cabinet Office (CA 1285)
Withdrawal from Vietnam, 1969 A5869, 38
Uniform disciplinary legislation for the Australian Defence Force, 1970 A5869, 94
F111C Project – Minister for Defence, April 1970 A5869, 248
Defence aid for Malaysia and Singapore, 1970 A5869, 599
SECRETARY'S COPY OF SECRETARIAT PAPERS AND RELATED MATERIAL OF THE COMMITTEE OF INQUIRY INTO SERVICES PAY, 1971–72
This plastic arch file contains the Secretary's (presumably PJ Fogarty's) copy of some of the Secretariat's papers and other related material.
Series: A3209
Quantity: 0.03 metres (Canberra)
Recorded by: 1971–72: Committee of Inquiry into Services Pay (CA 1522)
Secretary's copy of Secretariat papers and related material of the Committee of Inquiry into Services Pay, 1971–72 A3209, 1
THE SHEDDEN COLLECTION, 1937–71
This series contains records collected by Sir Frederick Shedden during his career within the Department of Defence. It also consists of material collated after his retirement while researching and writing a book on the history of Australian defence policy. The manuscript of this book was not published at the time of his death on 8 July 1971.
Series: A5954
Quantity: 204 metres (Canberra), 1 metre (Brisbane), 0.54 metres (Hobart), 0.72 metres (Victoria), 0.54 metres (Perth), 95 metres (Sydney)
Recorded by: 1942–71: Department of Defence (III), Central Office (CA 46); 1937–71: Sir Frederick Geoffrey Shedden KCMG, OBE (CP 320)
Statement on defence by the Hon Malcolm Fraser MP, Minister for Defence, House of Representatives, 10 March 1970 A5954, 99/7
The Hon Malcolm Fraser – resignation as Minister for Defence (press cuttings), 1971 A5954, 1201/34
CORRESPONDENCE WITH MINISTERS MAINTAINED AS MINISTER FOR DEFENCE, 1969–71
This series of correspondence with ministerial colleagues was maintained by Fraser as Minister for Defence in the Gorton government (1969–71).
Series: M62
Quantity: 0.63 metres (Canberra)
Recorded by: 1969–71: Department of Defence (III), Central Office – Minister's Office (CA 46); 1969–: The Rt Hon John Malcolm Fraser AC, CH (CP 51)
Correspondence – The Rt Hon JG Gorton (Prime Minister), 1970
Includes papers relating to Fraser's official visit to Vietnam and the United States (April 1970).
M62, 16
Correspondence – The Rt Hon JG Gorton (Prime Minister), 1970 M62, 11 PART 1
Correspondence – The Rt Hon JG Gorton (Prime Minister), 1970
Includes papers relating to the helicopter-manufacturing industry, military cemeteries, an interdepartmental committee to review service housing, aid to Cambodia and Vietnam, a government policy speech for the Senate election campaign, and Australian troops in Vietnam.
M62, 11 PART 2
Correspondence – The Hon WC Wentworth (Minister for Social Services and Aboriginal Affairs), 1969–71
Includes papers relating to nuclear weapons.
M62, 38
Image 21: An Iroquois helicopter of 9 Squadron hovers over a Centurion tank patrol during the Vietnam War, 1968. As Minister for Defence, Malcolm Fraser was involved in the acquisition of equipment for the war.

Image 21: An Iroquois helicopter of 9 Squadron hovers over a Centurion tank patrol during the Vietnam War, 1968. As Minister for Defence, Malcolm Fraser was involved in the acquisition of equipment for the war.
NAA: A1200, L71193
Enlarge image - View image gallery

CORRESPONDENCE MAINTAINED AS MINISTER FOR DEFENCE, 1969–71
The folders of correspondence in this series were maintained by Fraser as Minister for Defence in the Gorton government (1969–71). The correspondence is mainly copies of outgoing letters to various companies, organisations, diplomatic representatives, professional contacts and other individuals. The subject matter closely relates to defence interests at both policy and personal case levels, including the acquisition of aircraft carriers, armed forces pay conditions, Australian Peace Corps, defence equipment, RAAF provisioning bases, rifle clubs and Vietnam.
Series: M64
Quantity: 0.54 metres (Canberra)
Recorded by: 1969–71: Department of Defence (III), Central Office – Minister's Office (CA 46); 1969–: The Rt Hon John Malcolm Fraser AC, CH (CP 51)
Correspondence – The Rt Hon Lord Casey, 1969–70
Relates to the proposed acquisition of British aircraft carriers and a visit to the Rand Corporation; includes speeches 'The Commonwealth and its future' and 'The future of the Commonwealth'.
M64, 5
Correspondence 'H', 1969–70
Includes correspondence with Sir Lawrence Hartnett, Bob Hawke (President, Australian Council of Trade Unions), The Herald (Melbourne) and Hughes Tool Company (Aircraft Division).
M64, 11 PART 1
Correspondence 'H', 1969–70 M64, 11 PART 2
Correspondence 'K', 1970–71 M64, 14 PART 1
Correspondence 'K', 1970–71
Includes correspondence with Mr Justice John Kerr relating to the committee of inquiry into armed forces pay conditions, AGW Keys (National Secretary, Returned Services League), R Kingsford-Smith (Hawker de Havilland Australia Pty Ltd), and R Krygier relating to the Vietnam issue of Quadrant.
M64, 14 PART 2
PRESS RELEASES (SPEECHES, STATEMENTS, RADIO TALKS AND INTERVIEWS), 1970–83
This series of press releases was accumulated in Fraser's office mainly during his time as Minister for Defence (1970–71) and as Prime Minister (1975–83). Some papers, however, relate directly to his electorate interests as Member for Wannon, his second term as Minister for Education and Science (1971–72), and the eight months he was Leader of the Opposition (1975).
(PARTIALLY TRANSFERRED TO UMA CUSTODY IN 2006)

Series: M1229
Quantity: 2 metres (Canberra)
Recorded by: 1970–71: Department of Defence (III), Central Office – Minister's Office (CA 46); 1970–83: The Rt Hon John Malcolm Fraser AC, CH (CP 51)
Press releases (electorate), 1970–71
Contains press releases sent by Fraser as Member for Wannon and Minister for Defence; includes address notes.
M1229, 1
Speeches, addresses, 1970–71
Contains addresses made by Fraser as Minister for Defence; includes a statement relating to Royal Australian Air Force strike bomber capacity.
M1229, 54
ELECTORATE CORRESPONDENCE, LEXOGRAPHICAL SERIES, 1955–83
This is one of two series of Fraser's correspondence relating primarily to representations from individuals or interest groups associated with his constituency (the electorate of Wannon in Victoria's Western District). However, a significant number of the representations originated from elsewhere and are not, strictly speaking, 'electorate'. The series covers Fraser's entire 28 years in federal politics (1955–83), although most records date from the early 1960s.
(PARTIALLY TRANSFERRED TO UMA CUSTODY IN 2005 AND 2006)

Series: M1274
Quantity: 2 metres (Canberra)
Recorded by: 1969–71: Department of Defence (III), Central Office – Minister's Office (CA 46); 1955–83: The Rt Hon John Malcolm Fraser AC, CH (CP 51)
US (F111) mission – papers relating to official visit to Washington DC, April 1970 M1274, 67
RADIO ARCHIVES LIBRARY RECORDINGS, RADIO AUDIO PRODUCTION MATERIAL, 1973–
This series consists of master tapes kept by the Australian Broadcasting Commission's Radio Archives of programs considered to merit permanent retention due to their historical and/or artistic value.
Series: C100
Quantity: 1712 metres (Sydney)
Recorded by: 1973–83: Australian Broadcasting Commission, Head Office (CA 251); 1983–: Australian Broadcasting Commission – Radio National Archives (CA 6879)
AM current affairs program – Gorton crisis (dispute between the Prime Minister John Gorton and the former Defence Minister Malcolm Fraser), 1971
Includes comments by Tom Uren MP and the Queensland Young Liberals Greg Vickery (March 1971).
C100, 73/7/134 M

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Chapter 2
Records about Malcolm Fraser in the National Archives of Australia