Army vehicle registration books

Accession Number AWM126
Collection type Official Record
Object type Official Record
Conflict Korea, 1950-1953
Second World War, 1939-1945
Malayan Emergency, 1948-1960
Indonesian Confrontation, 1962-1966
Vietnam, 1962-1975
British Commonwealth Occupation Force, 1946-1952 (Japan)
Malay Peninsula, 1964-1966

Item copyright: Commonwealth of Australia copyright

Copying Provisions Copy provided for personal non-commercial use, permission from copyright holder must be sought for commercial use

These records were used to simply log the administrative details of vehicles in use by the Australian Army. After disposal by the army, some of the vehicles found their way into the hands of private owners, for whom the records became important for historical research, or for legal reasons such as registration requirements.

In 1982, to assist with an increasing number of public enquiries into army vehicles, the Australian War Memorial (AWM) requested the army transfer its vehicle registration books to AWM custody. The army was initially able to provide those registers not containing any vehicles still in use. Hence, in January 1983, the first consignment of sixteen volumes arrived at the AWM (via the Memorial’s Relics Section), from HQ Logistics Command in Melbourne. These volumes were numbered 1-16 and were accessioned into the Official Records Collection as OW84/2. In November 1984, an additional volume (27) arrived, and was accessioned as OD84/8. In September 1994 ten more volumes (17-26) were transferred to the Memorial, completing the run of volumes 1-27. The series was subsequently designated AWM126.


The series presently contains twenty seven bound volumes. Within each volume entries are arranged numerically by Army Registration Number (ARN). The entries refer to tanks, assault vehicles, armoured vehicles, machine gun carriers, 15 cwt trucks, scout cars and jeeps. While there are inconsistencies and omissions, most entries provide the following information:
- Army Registration Number (ARN)
- Type and make
- Engine number
- Chassis or maker's serial number
- Details of changes to registration
- Details of eventual disposal of vehicles.

System of arrangement and control:

The volumes are numbered serially from 1 to 27. Each register contains a range of Army Registration Numbers (ARN), by which they are arranged. The RecordSearch entry for each volume indicates which ARNs are covered by each volume.