This list of publications includes guides and major bibliographies which are specific to the holdings of the National Library of Australia or which include significant reference to the Library's collections. A number of these guides are now available online as well as in print; and in some cases an updated version is only available online.
The Library's publishing program includes many other works which highlight specific material drawn from the collection.
General guides to the collections
Burmester, Clifford Amandus (compiler), Guide to the collections. 4 volumes. 1974-1983.
An essential general survey of the Library’s collections by subject.
See also our online Guide to selected collections.
Cochrane, Peter (editor), Remarkable occurrences: the National Library of Australia’s first 100 years, 1901–2001. 2001.
The fascinating stories that lie behind the collecting of Australia’s heritage are revealed in this lavishly illustrated centenary volume.
Ferguson, John Alexander (compiler), Bibliography of Australia. 7 volumes, facsimile edition. 1975-1977.
First published in Sydney by Angus & Robertson, 1941-1969.
Ferguson, John Alexander (compiler), Bibliography of Australia: addenda 1784-1850. Volumes I-IV. 1986.
The preparation of the addenda to Ferguson’s definitive Bibliography of Australia was commenced during the lifetime of Sir John Ferguson. The work was carried on after his death, first by his original publishers Angus & Robertson and later by the National Library of Australia.
Paradise possessed: the Rex Nan Kivell Collection, a collection of essays. 2000.
A New Zealand-born collector, connoisseur and art dealer, Rex Nan Kivell amassed a remarkably diverse collection of special interest to all Australians - a collection that documents both European imaginings of the fabled Antipodes, and real European voyages to Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific.
Thompson, John (editor), The People’s treasures: collections in the National Library of Australia 1993.
Provides an insight into the richness of the collections held in the National Library of Australia for the people of Australia.
Subject guides to the collections
Burmester, Clifford Amandus (compiler), America on record: a guide to books and other materials relating to the United States of America in the National Library of Australia. 1976.
Dr John Cooper Theosophy Collection. 2005.
In 2003 the National Library acquired the collection of the late Dr John Cooper, a notable Australian historian of the Theosophical Movement. The collection consists of nearly 4,000 books and pamphlets, more than 240 serial titles and 30 large boxes of archival material. This is a bibliography of the books and serials in the collection.
Farsi Collection. 2000.
A Farsi language catalogue of items held by the National Library of Australia.
Genealogy and heraldry in the National Library of Australia: a select guide and bibliography. 1988.
This guide and bibliography introduces researchers who are engaged in tracing family histories to the special collections of the Library most likely to be useful to them, and lists over 2,500 works selected by staff experienced in genealogical research.
Jordan, Roy (compiler), The Aged in Australia: a research guide and select bibliography of Australian publications. 1999.
Also available and updated online.
O'Neill, Terence and Frances (compilers), Australian children's books to 1980: a select bibliography of the collection held in the National Library of Australia. 1989.
Udris, Biruta (compiler), Guide to overseas statutes in the National Library of Australia. 1993.
York, Barry (compiler), Our multicultural heritage 1788-1945: an annotated guide to the collections of the National Library of Australia. 1995.
Guide to the papers of Edward Koiki Mabo in the National Library of Australia. 1995.
Also available and updated online.
Mellor, Doreen and Haebich, Anna (editors), Many voices: reflections on experiences of indigenous child separation. 2002.
Mura Gadi: a guide to manuscript, pictorial and oral history resources in the National Library of Australia relating to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples 2004.
Also available and updated online.
Pe Thein Zar (compiler), Burmese serials in the National Library of Australia. 2001.
Sun, Ching-Oh and Ouyang, Dipin (compilers), Australiana collections in the Chinese language held by the National Library of Australia. 2000.
Australian maps. 1968–1988.
Quarterly publication with annual cumulations 1968-1981, annual 1982–1988. A comprehensive list of sheet maps representing areas within Australia and its territories, and other maps of Australian association.
Map collections in Australia: a directory.
Provides electronic access to information on map collections in Australia.
Film and video
Principal manuscript collections in the National Library of Australia. 1992.
While the focus of the Library’s manuscript collecting program is the documentation of Australian life and endeavour from a national perspective, the collection includes a significant body of material which is of interest to scholars of the Asia–Pacific region and material which is relevant to the European discovery, exploration and settlement of Australia. This guide is a convenient listing of the major collections of personal papers and institutional records in the Library’s keeping as at 1992.
The Register of Australian Archives and Manuscripts (RAAM) has retired. You can search Trove to find manuscripts, personal papers and organisational collections.
Guide to collections of manuscripts relating to Australia published by the National Library from 1965 to 1995. A guide to collections of personal papers and non-governmental organisational records held by Australian libraries and archives.
Ross, Barbara (compiler), Directory of medieval manuscripts, archives and incunabula held in the National Library of Australia. 1991.
The Australian Joint Copying Project (AJCP) was a joint venture between the Library and the State Library of New South Wales to microfilm records, principally of Australasian and Pacific interest, held in public repositories, institutional and private collections in the United Kingdom. A large component of the materials microfilmed were the official records held in the Public Record Office relating to the British administration of the Australasian colonies and later to British interests and influence in Australasia. The Library continues to acquire on a case-by-case basis microfilm of records of Australian interest held in British repositories or in private hands.
Australian Joint Copying Project Handbook. 11 volumes. 1972-2005.
- Part 1: General Introduction, 2000 - 3rd edition
- Part 2: Colonial Office, 1974 - reprinted with addenda 1984
- Part 3: Home Office, 1974 - reprinted with addenda 1984
- Part 4: War Office, 1986 - 2nd edition
- Part 5: Foreign Office, 1974, reprinted with addenda 1984
- Part 6: Public Record Office, Air Ministry, Board of Trade, Exchequer and Audit Department, Treasury and Other Record Groups, 1995 - 2nd edition
- Part 7: Admiralty, 1993 - 2nd edition
- Part 8: Miscellaneous, 1998 - 3rd edition
- Part 9: Public Record Office Personal Collections, 1991
- Part 10: Dominions Office, 1991
- Part 11: Public Record Office, Classes Filmed in the Final Five Years of the Australian Joint Copying Project, 2005
Pacific Manuscripts Bureau. The Library is a full-member library of the PMB and holds a complete set of all the Pacific printed and manuscript materials filmed by the Bureau over many years.
- Complete annotated catalogue PMB printed document series microforms PMB Doc 1-400. Edited by Bess Flores. 1991.
- Complete annotated catalogue PMB manuscript series microfilms PMB 1-1030. Edited by Gillian Scott. 1991.
Stone, Beth (compiler), Guide to microform research collections in the National Library of Australia 1992.
A descriptive listing of major National Library holdings in microform. It outlines the content of the collections and the guides and indexes which provide access to them.
Music and dance
A web portal providing access to both current and historical information about dance in Australia
Hair, Graham, The Don Banks Collection in the National Library of Australia. 1999.
A guide to Don Banks' personal papers and scores, together with his personal library of books, serials, recordings and miscellanea, as housed in the Manuscript Section, the Music Collection and the Oral History Section of the National Library of Australia.
Holmes, Robyn, The collector's book of sheet music covers. 2001.
Descriptions and illustrations from the Library's sheet music collection reflecting Australia as a nation.
An online service developed by the National Library and the National Film and Sound Archive to provide access to information on Australian music, musicians, organisations and services. It includes music scores, sound recordings, websites and a range of other music-related material held by a large number of Australia's cultural institutions or described by specialist music services. The Library’s own music collections are a major component of this service.
Potter, Michelle, A full house: the Esso guide to the performing arts collections of the National Library of Australia. 1991.
A guide to the extensive and rich performing arts materials held in the National Library of Australia. From the high art of Melba to the giggles of vaudeville, the collections contain portraits, manuscripts, oral history interviews, photographs, music scores, personal papers, theatre programs and memorabilia.
Potter, Michelle, A passion for dance. 1997.
Australia's Oral History Collections: A National Directory
Based on the 1997 printed publication of the same name, the Library's own oral history collections are a major component of this national directory.
A Catalogue of Oil Paintings in the Pictorial Collection of the National Library of Australia. 1990.
This fully illustrated catalogue of the oil paintings in the National Library of Australia's Pictorial Collection is invaluable to researchers of Australian history and Australian art. Among these historically important paintings are many of outstanding artistic quality including works by Tom Roberts, John Glover, Conrad Martens and Eugene von Guerard. For anyone interested in the historical and social aspects of Australian life, this catalogue is a vital research tool.
Ennis, Helen, Intersections: Photography, History and the National Library of Australia. 2004.
The first representative survey of the Library's photographic holdings, this work introduces the reader to Australia from the 1840s to the present, through the cameras of Charles Bayliss, Samuel Sweet, Olive Cotton, May and Minna Moore, Peta Hill, Frank Hurley, Harold Cazneaux, Max Dupain, Philip Gostelow, Raymond de Berquelle, Wolfgang Sievers and many more.
Available for purchase in the online BookShop.