These files contain correspondence relating to the administration of the Obscene and Indecent Publication Act 1901 (Act No.12) and the Indecent Articles and Classified Publications Act 1975 (Act No.32) and their amending legislation.(1) They concern the registration and classification of publications, prosecutions under the Acts, and complaints from private individuals alleging breaches of the Acts. These breaches included the display of pornography; offensive language; unsuitable advertisements; and the use of unsuitable material in publications depicting drug use, exploitation of women or children, or inappropriate political characterisations. There are also registration files for distributors of printed matter as required under section 21 of the Obscene and Indecent Publications Act 1955 (Act No.10, 1955). Many files relate to complaints, investigations and prosecutions of the publishers of student publications from Sydney University, Macquarie University and the University of New South Wales. The series contains files on the appointment, resignation, remuneration, and travel costs for members of the State Advisory Committee on Publications. The Committee was established under section 31 of the Obscene and Indecent Publications (Amendment) Act 1967 to advise the Minister whether a printed matter should be prosecuted under section 16 of the Act. When the 1967 Act was repealed by the Indecent Articles and Classified Publications Act 1975, publications were classified by classification officers. A classification by an officer could be appealed to the Publications Classification Board established under the 1975 Act. There are also accounting files and files relating to reform of legislation covering obscene and indecent publications. Some files may have the offending publication attached, including non-English publications. Many publications were removed from the files and placed in a filing cabinet within the Chief Secretary’s Department and it is likely some of these publications are now part of the Copies of Indecent Articles and Classified Publications series that is closed to public access (NRS16733). The files are arranged in chronological order and were part of the Chief Secretary’s correspondence. The files are numbered with an annual single number and are preceded by the letter “A”. The correspondence files comprising this series are kept as a special bundle and are listed in the Guide to the Colonial Secretary’s Correspondence. The Chief Secretary’s Department maintained a register for recording prosecutions of publishers and distributors of indecent printed material (NRS1257) and a Register of Distributors of printed material (NRS1258). It may be possible to obtain the correspondence file number for a publisher or distributor from the registers. The correspondence files may include the following documents: minute papers, witness statements, newspaper clippings, copies of notices from the New South Wales Government Gazette, certificates of incorporation as a company, posters, photographs, badges, novelty cards, petitions, minutes of the Literature Censorship Conference held in Canberra on 3rd and 4th of October 1968, and lists of publications sent to the Federal Department of Customs and Excise for review under the Customs (Prohibited Imports) Regulations. ENDNOTES: 1. The Obscene and Indecent Publications Act 1901 (Act No.12) authorised police with a special warrant to enter in the daytime any premises and to search and seize all obscene publications and any machine or materials used in the production of such publications. The 1901 Act and subsequent amending legislation provided for action against obscene or indecent printed material after a complaint.(1) In 1975, the Obscene and Indecent Publications Act 1901 and its amending legislation was repealed by the Indecent Articles and Classified Publications Act 1975 (Act No.32). The 1975 Act regulated the maintenance of standards of decency in the circulation and display of publications and certain other articles. The Act provided for publications regarded as coming within the scope of indecency laws to be submitted by the publisher or distributor for classification. The Act prevented restricted or direct sale publications being publicly displayed, distributed or advertised. The main legislation covering obscene and indecent publications in New South Wales prior to 1975 was: The Obscene Publications Prevention Act 1880 (43 Vic No.24), The Indecent Publications Act 1900 (No.2, 1900), An Act to amend the Indecent Publications Act 1900 (No.27, 1900), Obscene and Indecent Publications Act 1901 (No.12, 1901) (and amending legislation in 1946, 1955, 1967, and 1968), Indecent Articles and Classified Publications Act 1975.