Papers of Greg Weir
- 1893-1994 (bulk 1974-1994)
- 3.5 m. (25 boxes)
- Available for reference
The collection was donated to the National Library in 1995.
The papers comprise 25 files of correspondence, articles, cuttings,
reports, minutes, and other papers assembled by Weir during twenty
years of political activism. The papers have been arranged into
25 sections, or 'volumes' by Greg Weir and include a comprehensive
index to the archive. The material relates to gay and lesbian
issues, homosexual law reform, the origin and development of the
Palm Sunday rallies, the AIDS epidemic, and civil liberties particularly
with respect to the gay and lesbian communities in Queensland.
Teacher and gay rights activist. Weir took legal action against
the Queensland government in 1976 for not employing gays. He
worked as an electorate assistant to a Queensland senator, 1981-1987.
The index to Greg Weir's Archive is extremely comprehensive and
is available in both hard copy and electronically. The printed
index has 794 pages. Each document is indexed and correspondents
- Index to the papers including documents and conclusion (4
- Draft index (1 volume)
- 4 computer disks containing data files for the index
- A list of Greg Weir's poster collection.
- Volume 1 - Gay and lesbian issues, before 1974
- Volume 2 - Gay and lesbian issues, 1974-75
- Volume 3 - Gay and lesbian issues, 1976
- Volume 4 - Gay and lesbian issues, 1977
- Doc. 1a-300 (8 files), Appendix and diary
- Volume 5 - Gay and lesbian issues, 1978
- Doc. 1-125 (4 files) and diary
- Volume 6 - Gay and lesbian issues, 1979
- Volume 7 - Greg Weir legal case closes and other non-gay activities
in the 1980s
- Volume 8 - Gay and lesbian issues, 1980-81
- Volume 9 - AIDS, 1981-83
- Volume 10 - Gay and lesbian issues, 1982-83
- Volume 11 - Gay and lesbian issues, 10th National Conference,
- Volume 12 - Gays, ABC, Keith Wright (ALP, Queensland)
- Volume 13 - AIDS and Queensland and the Federal Election,
- Volume 14 - Gays and Queensland, Sturgess Inquiry, 1984-87
- Doc. 1-202 (4 files) and Appendix
- Volume 15 - AIDS - testing and tracing campaign, 1985
Volume 16 - Gays and lesbians - Queensland Liquor Act, 1985
- Doc. 1-71b (2 files), Appendix, Attachments and Petitions
Volume 17 - AIDS (General), 1985
Volume 18 - AIDS (General), 1986
- Doc. 1-24b (2 files), Collections Jun-Aug, compilations
Volume 19 - AIDS - Queensland National Campaign, 1986
- Doc. 1-109 (2 files), Letters of support, etc.
Volume 20 - AIDS (General), 1987
- Doc. 1-8 (3 files), reports (Q.A.C.), compilations
Volume 21 - AIDS and Queensland Parliamentary leaders, 1987
- Doc. 1-384 (5 files), Serendipity: some archival ballast
Volume 22 - Gay and lesbian issues, 1988-89
Volume 23 - Gay and lesbian issues and Law Reform Queensland,
Volume 24 - Gay and lesbian issues - Anti-discrimination
Volume 25 - Greg Weir letters , etc. (1971-94) (14 files)
- 2 handbooks: The Sydneian : Sydney Grammar School, 1969 and
Church of England : Year Book of the Diocese of Brisbane, 1972
1 Indexes and 4 computer disks, poster collection list
A collection of documents from files compiled during twenty years
of organised social activism. Variously known as:
- "Gay Issues 1891-1994 Mainstream Political and Cultural
Perspective: A Comprehensive Archive and Index".
- "Greg Weir Documents" Original Documents held at
the National Library of Australia, Reference Number MS 8915
- "Greg Weir Archive of Gay Issues" Copies of Documents
in the Mitchell Library, Reference Number MSS 5938
Dedicated to those I have worked with those who we have worked
for and those who work for the good of us all in some way or another.
- Gay and Lesbian Issues Prior to 1974
- Gay and Lesbian Issues 1974 - 1975
- Gay and Lesbian Issues 1976
- Gay and Lesbian Issues 1977
- Gay and Lesbian Issues 1978
- Gay and Lesbian Issues 1979
- Greg Weir - Legal Case Ends and other 'Non-Gay' Activities
- Gay and Lesbian Issues 1980 - 1981
- A.I.D.S. Issues 1981 - 1983
- Gay and Lesbian Issues 1982 - 1983
- Gay and Lesbian Issues - 10th National Conference 1984
- Gay and Lesbian Issues - Keith Wright (ALP Queensland) 1984
- A.I.D.S. and the Federal Election 1984
- Gay and Lesbian Issues - Queensland "Sturgess Inquiry"
- A.I.D.S. Issue - Testing and Tracing 1985
- Gays and Lesbian Issues - Queensland Liquor Acts 1985
- A.I.D.S. - General 1985
- A.I.D.S. - General 1986
- A.I.D.S. - Queensland National Campaign on AIDS Education
- A.I.D.S. - General 1987
- A.I.D.S. - Queensland Parliamentary Leadership 1987
- Gay and Lesbian Issues - Organising Models in Queensland 1988-89
- Gay and Lesbian Issues - Law Reform Queensland 1989-1990
- Gay, Lesbian and Queer Issues - Anti-Discrimination 1991+
- Greg Weir - Some Personal Correspondence
Noel Preston, Senior Lecturer In Applied Ethics, Queensland
University of Technology
Doc. No: IV - .05 / Letter: 1994.08.01
From: Dr Noel Preston Senior Lecturer in Applied Ethics, Queensland
Institute of Technology
"I am writing to commend to you the archive material....
I have perused the range of materials which details documentation
on the question of the homosexual community's place in the wider
community set against data which reflects a significant period
in Queensland's political history."
Gary MacLennan, School of Media and Journalism, Queensland
University of Technology
Doc. No: V - .05 / Letter: 1994.08.01
From: Gary MacLennan School of Media and Journalism, Queensland
Institute of Technology
"... So to sum up my responses to this material I believe
that it is extremely valuable and should certainly be preserved.
Future researchers into student politics, gay issues, both Left
and Right Wing pressure groups; the role of the state and its
educational apparatus will all find documents hear which would
be extremely difficult to access otherwise...."
Stephen Cox, Lecturer in Social Psychology, Griffith University
Doc. No: VII - .05 / Letter: 1994.09.16
From: Stephen Cox Lecturer in Social Psychology, Griffith University,
"I unreservedly commend the archive. It is a thorough
collection of gay and lesbian historical material..."
W.A. Lee, Former Reader in Law, University of Queensland,
Commissioner for the Queensland Law Reform Commission
Doc. No: VIII - .05 / Letter: 1994.09.22
From: WA (Tony) Lee Former Reader in Law, University of Queensland
and Commissioner for Law Reform, Queensland
"... No post graduate student of law, politics, history,
sociology, linguistics, medicine or education touching upon the
general or particular areas embraced by this archive could fail
to benefit from it. Indeed it would be hard to see how any comprehensive
exploration of Australian politics of the seventies and eighties
could safely ignore this archive, let alone any exploration of
the more particular issues canvassed by it. I commend it unreservedly
as a major Australian archive."
John Woodley, Australian Democrat Senator for Queensland,
Minister of the Uniting Church of Australia
Doc. No: X - .05 / Letter: 1994.09.22
From: John Woodley Senator for Queensland and Minister of the
Uniting Church in Australia.
"... I believe that students wishing to research the areas
of history, politics, social change, education and law will find
this archive to be a most valuable resource. As a member of the
organisation of Concerned Christians and Director for Social Responsibility
of the Uniting Church in Queensland during the turbulent years
of the seventies and eighties, it is most gratifying to know that
someone has provided this window into that period..."
Margaret Reynolds, Senator for Queensland
Doc. No: XI - .05 / Letter: 1994.11.08
From: Margaret Reynolds Australian Senate
"... The archive is also particularly distinguished by
the depth of scholarship which underpins its organisation and
selection of source material..."
Dr. Clive Moore, Senior Lecturer, Department of History, The
University of Queensland
Doc. No: XIII - .05 / Letter: 1994.11.22
From: Clive Moore Senior Lecturer, Department of History, University
"... It is an extraordinary collection: although there
is a Queensland bias it ranges all over Australia, and includes
relevant material from overseas. The collection includes letters
printed materials, some personal to Greg but other material from
a wide range of sources, going back to the 1960's...."
Ian Dearden, President, Queensland Council of Civil Liberties
Doc. No: XIV - .05 / Letter: 1994.11.29
From: Ian Dearden President, Queensland Council for Civil Liberties
"... I find particularly impressive the amazing amount
of material Greg has collected which would otherwise be quite
ephemeral.... I have recently completed a Maters thesis on the
Queensland Anti-Discrimination Act. I regret to say that I only
discovered the existence of the archive after completing the thesis.
It is clear to me that the material in the archive would have
been of great assistance to me if I had been aware of its existence
earlier. It is for precisely this reason that it is essential
that the contents of the archive and the index become publicly
available and accessible so that this particular wheel does not
need to be continually re-invented...."
Dr. M.D. Fletcher, Head of Department of Government, The University
D.J. Zetlin, Lecturer in Political Science, The University
Doc. No: XVI - .05 / Letter: 1994.12.06
From: Di Zetlin Lecturer in Political Science, Department of Government,
University of Queensland
"... The archive would be an extremely valuable resource
for the many undergraduate students who are learning to use the
analysis of sexuality and sexual politics as a window into political
change. There is sufficient primary material to satisfy researchers
at more advanced levels. My judgement is that if this archive
were developed by a reputable library it could form the nucleus
for a substantive contribution to an understanding of Queensland
history and politics as it has been refracted through repressive
orientations to sexuality..."
Phillip Tahmindjis, Associate Professor of Law, Queensland
University of Technology
Doc. No: XVII - .05 / Letter: 1995.06.01
From: Phillip Tahmindjis Associate Professor of Law, Queensland
University of Technology.
"I have examined in detail Greg Weir's Archive 'Gay Issues
1893-1994' (and have copies of several volumes myself, which I
find an invaluable research tool). I can say without equivocation
that it represents a major resource for those involved in civil
liberties issues, particularly with respect to the gay and lesbian
Judith O'Callaghan, Senior Curator, Decorative Arts and Design,
Doc. No: XVIII - .05 / Letter: 1995.06.20
From: Judith O'Callaghan Senior Curator, Decorative Arts and Design,
Powerhouse Museum, Sydney.
To: Greg Weir
"... At a wider level, this richly detailed archive contributes
to a broader understanding of Australian history and culture.
As you know, I am currently developing an exhibition on the Sydney
Gay and Lesbian Mardi Grass which will open a the Powerhouse Museum
in February 1996. I must say that out of all the archive material
I have inspected during the course of my research, whether held
by individuals, organisations or institutions, your collection
is the most comprehensive. A diversity of viewpoints is represented
within its broad chronological range, including as it does manifestos,
letters, ministerial statements, speeches, press articles, editorials,
newsletters, minutes, handbills, conference programs, circulars
and even song lyrics. The process of accessing the material is
made extremely easy by virtue of the way in which it has been
carefully organised and catalogued. So much information can be
gleaned from reading the index itself...."
Michael Bartos, Research Fellow, National Centre in HIV Social
Research, Macquarie University
Doc. No: XIX - .05 / Letter: 1995.06.28
From: Michael Bartos Research Fellow, National Centre in HIV Social
Research, School of Behavioural Sciences, Macquarie University,
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.
"... The material in this archive is an extremely valuable
research tool in relation to the history of the public and policy
response to HIV/AIDS in Australia.... Perhaps the most valuable
aspect of the archive is its comprehensive index. The other substantial
archive collection on related materials (the National AIDS Archive
at the Noel Butlin Archive Centre, Australian National University)
indexes its collection by extremely broad category. The availability
of both a chronological and descriptive account of each document
in the Greg Weir archive makes the collection much more readily
useable. The HIV/AIDS archive compiled by Greg Weir is a research
resource of major national significance in relation both to the
analysis of HIV/AIDS and also more widely to the history of public
health in Australia."
Paul Wilson, Journalist, Criminologist and Dean, School of
Humanities and Social Science, Bond University
Doc. No: XX - .05 / Letter / 1995.06.28
From: Paul Wilson Dean, School of Humanities and Social Sciences,
Bond University, Queensland.
To: Greg Weir
"... The material is an invaluable research tool which
has much relevance for both journalists and academics. I believe
your collection adds significantly to our knowledge of past social,
political, cultural and crime issues in Queensland. It is one
of the most valuable sources of data for serious students of this
Andrew Finegan, Co-Chair, Lesbian and Gay Caucus, Community
and Public Sector Union (Qld)
Doc. No: XI - .05 / Letter: 1995.08.21
From: Andrew Finegan Co-Chair, Lesbian and Gay Caucus, Community
and Public Sector Union, Queensland Branch.
"... The information you have collected provides an extremely
important point of reference for any person who is interested
in the development of the queer political and Civil Rights movement
in Queensland. Such people would include political activists as
well as students and other academics with an interest in these
topics. One of the best attributes of the Archive is the way it
Wayne Morgan, Lecturer in Law, University of Melbourne
Doc. No: XXII - .05 / Letter: 1995.08.22
From: Wayne Morgan Lecturer in Law, University of Melbourne.
"... Greg's work is a fascinating collection of Queensland
(and Australian) political and cultural material.... Taken as
a whole, the breadth and depth of the compilation is more than
impressive: it could keep a researcher busy for quite some months!
As an academic lawyer whose research concentrates on human rights,
the value of Greg's compilation is difficult to over-estimate....
Greg's Index ... and his cross-references draw in still further
Babs Kettle, Former Secretary to the Anglican Social Justice
Doc. No: XXIII - .05 / Letter: 1995.10.22
From: Babs Kettle Friend and former Secretary to the Anglican
Social Justice Committee, Brisbane.
To: Greg Weir
"... For myself, there is a very distinct feeling of participating
in an historic pursuit in my lifetime, (which has not exactly
been devoid of historic-making adventures) when some of us began
the pioneers lonely path towards changing one of society's shibboleths.
Thank you for that."
Graeme Powell, Manuscript Librarian, Collection and Readers
Services, National Library of Australia
Doc. No: XXIV - .05 / Letter: 1995.12.19
From: Graeme Powell Manuscript Librarian, Collections and Reader
Services, National Library of Australia.
"I am pleased to acknowledge receipt of the six cartons
containing 25 volumes of papers entitled 'Gay Issues 1893-1994.'
These volumes, with their detailed indexes will be an extremely
valuable resource for social historians and other researchers.
Greg Weir, A letter of introduction
Doc. No: 'Serendipity - .05 / Letter: 1996.01.11
From: John Buchanan Deputy Director, Australian Centre for Industrial
Relations, Research and Teaching, Sydney University.
"... A major challenge of research centres such as ours
is to obtain information on how official government policies and
practices intersect with pressures and activities occurring beyond
the state. We usually have to rely on the expensive and quite
limited research tools of oral history and making use of publicly
available material. The real strength of this archive is that
it provides comprehensive written information of relevance to
understanding how public agencies interact with agents 'in the
field.' An additional feature to the collection is that... People
involved in these processes rarely have the time to systematicly
record their experiences. This archive therefore represents a
very rare source of data..."
David Studham Esq.
Kew. Vic 3101
Finally the introductory letter to the index. You have been so
patient over these last four years while I have been working on
When people ask me what am I up to and the reply is archiving.
There is usually a rather vacant almost glazed expression on their
faces. This is followed by a polite and courteous response of,
"that's interesting". Then we change to a subject that's
more familiar. Your encouragement, and that of some others, has
helped greatly as I've worked though the boxes of material. As
you can see the index is truly "a tome".
The collection has been divided into twenty-five volumes, or
sections. Usually based on a topic, each volume does include
other material from the period. So for example a volume based
on a Queensland specific topic will include material from other
states and countries. In some cases various volumes overlap.
Initially I had expected to only do a couple of boxes from the
total collection, but after inquiring as to the availability of
the other material, it seemed necessary to continue. It is this
process of archival archaeology that has lead to the sectional
development of the collection.
There have been a number of documents which have not been included
in the index. These are some legal documents and others mostly
on health issues in the late 1980s and early nineties. These will
just be deposited with the original collection and made available
to the ardent researcher. Also there are photographs and posters
yet to be looked through.
Each document in the collection has been filed in chronological
order within each volume. The date of the document is on the
first line of the entry.
In the case of documents which do not have a specific date, such
as journal articles that are just dated by the month in which
they were published, these have been dated at the first of that
month. Readers will notice that in some cases this works, but
on a few occasions it doesn't. For example, an article from a
monthly newspaper published halfway through a month which reports
news for that month. There are other sorts of documents where
this apparent anomaly also occurs, such as, documents which are
chronologies. In the case of documents where only the month or
year are known, these are dated at the beginning of the known
The documents have been allocated a number within each of the
volumes. In the index to the collection the document number
is followed by the volume number. For example, an entry beginning
with "Document No. 303 - 23, means that the document is the
303 document contained in the 23rd volume of the collection.
The type of document; where applicable, to who the document
is sent and the source of the document is located just under the
document number and date line.
A description of the document concludes each entry. In
most cases this is drawn from the text of the document. If you
refer to the first document of the archive and its accompanying
file note you can see the advantage of this for the reader who
just wants to skim through the material. In addition it will be
a quick reference for researchers who only need a date or basic
source information. From experience I am sure shelvers in a library
will appreciate not having to unduly run around re-shelving the
Every now and then you will come across a file note. I
had hoped to do these more thoroughly, but time would not allow
it. In some cases they are still in their draft form. It seemed
more important to get the material out and about, than to fiddle
There is an end note on the last page of the index regarding a
little task to make up for the hurried file notes.
Also on the last page is an extract from the last document of
the collection. This extract is perhaps a bit vague, but is intended
to convey to the reader, that the collection contains everything
contained in my files. Even those things which may not seem at
first glance to have much import. Such documents are included
in that they may convey some meaning.
I am sure that some of the hand written minutes from the meetings
you attended during your stay in Queensland will give you giggle
or two. Researchers may also find value in looking at such documents
as a 'mud map'. There also may be documents which I would regard
as not significant, but others might.
It has been interesting to see what people have found interesting
and what they haven't. This is why beyond the initial editing
of documents when I collected the material there has been little
other editing to the collection - even those notoriously dyslexic
notes of mine.
The process of compiling the archive has been a lengthy one. Often
done during intense bursts in the early hours of the morning,
and at times when other things did not preoccupy my time. On some
occasions these early morning hours at the keyboard did not provide
the best conditions for accuracy. In most these lapses in accuracy
have been picked up. If not they usually have been noted in the
index. As for those that haven't well those with a more pedantic
mind than mine can pick those up and correct them. It would have
been good to have the luxury of putting it aside for a few months
and coming back for one more final check. But I can't afford such
Davo, you don't know how many times the contents of this letter
have been churned over and over as I've gone for my usual morning
walk. Originally it was going to be one of those long and involved
'meaning of life' notes. But its is better that the documents
speak for themselves, and I will save my thoughts on them for
subsequent letters to you.
There isn't much more I want to add at this stage beyond the five
lines on the dedication page. I just hope that the collection
is put to good use.
As always, with fond regard,
9th January 1996
PS. Almost forgot about "serendipity", when I
was rung and told of the imminent arrival of an unexpected letter.
I had half a mind to leave it out of this introductory section
as it all seemed finished. Your Queensland and Victorian experiences
working on anti-discrimination legislation and the letter's reference
to the multifaceted areas of policy development, gives you a good
understanding of why it needed be included. As for archival 'serendipity'
- there are a few un-expected surprises in the archive and index.
It seemed important to incorporate this element and extra spark
of discovery. Such an unusual addition would be lost in a too
formal, totally indexed and catalogued archive. The more maverick
researcher will enjoy the occasional surprise or 'serendipitous'
discovery. I have over the years, and did again when this overdue
letter arrived for its hurried inclusion. Must go! "All best".
(13 January 1996)
Guide prepared November 1996. Last updated 30 December 1996.