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Series Description

There are 28 Files for this series in AAD :
Electronic Telegrams, 1973 (info) Search
Electronic Telegrams, 1974 (info) Search
Electronic Telegrams, 1975 (info) Search
Electronic Telegrams, 1976 (info) Search
Electronic Telegrams, 1977 (info) Search
Electronic Telegrams, 1978 (info) Search
Electronic Telegrams, 1979 (info) Search
Electronic Telegrams Withdrawal Cards, 1973 (info) Search
Electronic Telegrams Withdrawal Cards, 1974 (info) Search
Electronic Telegrams Withdrawal Cards, 1975 (info) Search
Electronic Telegrams Withdrawal Cards, 1976 (info) Search
Electronic Telegrams Withdrawal Cards, 1977 (info) Search
Electronic Telegrams Withdrawal Cards, 1978 (info) Search
Electronic Telegrams Withdrawal Cards, 1979 (info) Search
P-Reel Document Index Entries, 1973 (info) Search
P-Reel Document Index Entries, 1974 (info) Search
P-Reel Document Index Entries, 1975 (info) Search
P-Reel Document Index Entries, 1976 (info) Search
P-Reel Document Index Entries, 1977 (info) Search
P-Reel Document Index Entries, 1978 (info) Search
P-Reel Document Index Entries, 1979 (info) Search
P-Reel Document Index Entries Withdrawal Cards, 1973 (info) Search
P-Reel Document Index Entries Withdrawal Cards, 1974 (info) Search
P-Reel Document Index Entries Withdrawal Cards, 1975 (info) Search
P-Reel Document Index Entries Withdrawal Cards, 1976 (info) Search
P-Reel Document Index Entries Withdrawal Cards, 1977 (info) Search
P-Reel Document Index Entries Withdrawal Cards, 1978 (info) Search
P-Reel Document Index Entries Withdrawal Cards, 1979 (info) Search
Title: Central Foreign Policy Files, created, 7/1/1973 - 12/31/1979, documenting the period ca. 1973 - 12/31/1979
Creator: Department of State. (Most Recent)
Type of Archival Materials: Data Files
Textual Records
Level of Description: Series from Record Group 59: General Records of the Department of State
Other Titles: State Department Cables
State Department Telegrams
Location: National Archives at College Park - Electronic Records, National Archives at College Park, 8601 Adelphi Road, College Park, MD, 20740-6001. PHONE: 301-837-0470; FAX: 301-837-3681; EMAIL: cer@nara.gov
Inclusive Dates: 7/1/1973 - 12/31/1979
Coverage Dates: ca. 1973 - 12/31/1979
Date Note: Although this series was created between July 1973 and December 1979, some documents dated prior to July 1, 1973 are also included.
Part of: Record Group 59: General Records of the Department of State
Arrangement: Arranged into the following eight sections (subseries) and thereunder in one-year blocks: Electronic Telegrams, Electronic Telegrams Withdrawal Cards, P-Reel Index Entries, P-Reel Index Entries Withdrawal Cards, N-Reel Microfilm Master Copies [NODIS Telegrams], P-Reel Microfilm Master Copies, Oversize Enclosures (?Bulkies?), and Top Secret Telegrams.
Function and Use: These records were used to document the conduct of American foreign relations by the Department of State and U.S. diplomatic and consular representatives overseas and at U.S. missions to international organizations.
Scope & Content Note: The Central Foreign Policy File (CFPF) is the Department of State's primary record keeping system. It contains incoming and outgoing telegrams, airgrams, instructions, reports, intra- and inter-departmental memorandums, correspondence, diplomatic notes, and other documents relating to the foreign relations of the United States and the management and administration of the Department. The CFPF is the result of early-1970s efforts to utilize computer and microfilm technology for the efficient creation, dissemination, storage, and retrieval of records. As a result, the Department phased out its paper-based central file holdings and created a new central record keeping system, then called the Automated Data System (ADS).

ADS consisted of an electronic index, computer-output microfilm of many incoming and outgoing telegrams, manually created microfilm of hard copy documents, and paper files of oversize documents. The Department indexed the records in a database that initially constituted the main "automated" portion of the recordkeeping system. For the manually created microfilm, staff keyed data elements such as date, subjects, and document number into the database along with reel and frame numbers to create and index of the microfilmed documents. The same types of information were captured automatically and manually verified for electronic telegrams and the computer-output microfilm. To locate records, users queried the system to create a virtual file of document citations and then retrieved relevant documents. During the 1990s, data from the database on all records was merged with the preserved electronic telegrams into the State Archiving system (SAS), and it is that data that is transferred to the National Archives.

The preservation of telegrams in the new system began in July 1973. While initially computer-output microfilm served as the preservation medium for the telegrams, many were saved in electronic form as well. Within a few years, the electronic versions of the telegrams became part of the formal recordkeeping system. A computer output microfilm copy of many of the telegrams is found on the D-Reel ("D" for digital) microfilm. There is a large percentage of overlap between the electronic telegrams and those found on the microfilm. Some telegrams were not preserved on either the D-Reel microfilm or electronically and are found on the P-Reel microfilm described below. NODIS (No Distribution) telegrams required special handling. While many were preserved electronically as part of the main telegram file, beginning in 1975, they also were preserved on the N-Reel ("N" for NODIS) microfilm.

In January 1974, the Department began microfilming paper documents (airgrams, memorandums of various types, reports, correspondence, diplomatic notes, aides memoire, and in some cases telegrams, etc.) and destroying the original documents. This microfilm is referred to as the P-Reel ("P" for paper) microfilm. Documents on the film are arranged in the order in which they were received and filmed by the records management office, not by subject or point of origin. (Generally, paper-based documents dating through December 1973 are found in the legacy paper-based filing system arranged according to an alpha-numeric filing system, although there are some pre-1974 documents among the P-Reel files.)

Hardcopy documents too large for filming, usually enclosures to incoming airgrams, were preserved in their original paper format. Those records constitute the Oversize Enclosures ("Bulky Files").
Access Restrictions: Restricted - Partly. FOIA (b)(1) National Security. There are data files that are classified and fully exempt from disclosure under FOIA (b)(1), FOIA (b)(3), and FOIA (b)(6).

There are data files that are unclassified or declassified, but are fully exempt from disclosure under FOIA (b)(3) and FOIA (b)(6).

There are data files that are unclassified or declassified, but are or potentially otherwise partly restricted and exempt from disclosure under FOIA (b)(3), FOIA (b)(6), and FOIA (b)(7d). NARA has or can create public use versions of these files.

There are some data files that are unclassified and unrestricted.

The microfilm reels are all restricted fully for FOIA (b)(1), FOIA (b)(3), and FOIA (b)(6). The paper records are restricted partly for FOIA (b)(1), FOIA (b)(3), and FOIA (b)(6).
General Note: For detailed information on the CENTRAL FOREIGN POLICY FILES, ca. 7/1/1973 - 12/31/1979, see the FAQ at: https://www.archives.gov/files/research/foreign-policy/state-dept/rg-59-central-files/faqs.pdf
Some parts of this series are known as the "State Cables" or "State Telegrams."
This series is the immediate successor to the series "Subject-Numeric Files, 02/01/1963 - 12/31/1973" (National Archives Identifier 580618).
Finding Aid Type: Index
Finding Aid Source: Department of State
Finding Aid Note: There is an electronic index to the non-electronic records in this series.
Finding Aid Type: Technical Information
Finding Aid Source: NARA and the Department of State
Extent: 1,340 linear feet, 8 linear inches
715 data files, 20 electronic documentation files, and 2 linear feet of paper documentation
4,038 reels of microfilm
Index Terms
  Subjects Represented in the Archival Material
    Names
Names, Personal

The U.S. National Archives and Records Administration
8601 Adelphi Road, College Park, MD 20740-6001
Telephone: 1-86-NARA-NARA or 1-866-272-6272