Interesting things found in the Proceedings of the Australian Federal Parliament.

This history of parliamentary debate is similar to the description given to the history of the newspaper. The first day it is read with eagerness, the next day it is thrown away; after the lapse of some years it is worth its weight in gold. The ancient volumes of the Hansard, imperfect as they are, are often intensely interesting reading for the light they throw on dead statesmen, or past conditions of society, legislation and controversies.*

This website came about because we were interested in making the Australian Federal Hansard more accessible to researchers. When we began there have been several projects that have worked to make the “imperfect volumes” useful to more than those who know what they are looking for or journalists seeking a quote of the day. Indeed we are indebted to those like Tim Sharrat whose seminal work helped build our computational methodologies and whose site functioned as a stand in when the official site of historical Hansard records was offline. Check out: https://historichansard.net/.

If you would like to know more about our larger project please email us on: hansardwtf@gmail.com.

This site is run by Naomi Barnes and Sam Hames.

*Lord Cadogan, Lord Privy Seal, in draft report submitted to Joint Committee of the British Parliament on Debates and Proceedings in Parliament. Lords Sessional Papers, XV, 1888.