The bulk of the MS 2389 collection is comprised of Joseph A. Alexander's diaries which were written between 1932 and 1947. These diaries chronicle, in part, the events of the second world war from the point of view of an Australian (J.A. Alexander) in Russia during 1944. The diaries provide an insight into the politics and conditions of life in Russia as they fight for their very existence against the onslaught of the Wehrmacht. As well, there are books in the collection including: Inside red Russia by J.J. Maloney, The great delusion: the autobiography of an ex-communist leader by Cecil Sharpley, Scientist in Russia by Eric Ashby, Canberra: history of and legends relating to the federal capital territory of the Commonwealth of Australia by John Gale, and, Illustrations to Prinsep's Journal of a voyage from Calcutta to Van Dieman's Land: from original sketches taken during the years 1829 and 1830 (2 copies). Also included are papers by Alexander on Russia, two draft chapters of "In the shadow", and an autobiographical typescript prepared for St Patrick's College Old Collegians Association. The collection also comprises newspapers and various booklets and papers some of which deal with mainland and Tasmanian Aborigines and history (4 boxes, 1 fol. box).