National Library of New Zealand
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Human society is like an arch,
Kept from falling by the mutual pressure of its parts

Lucius Annaeus Seneca

Welcome to Archway, Archives New Zealand’s system for documenting government records in the context of their creation and use.

Archway contains descriptions of over 1.5 million records that have been transferred from government agencies to our four offices in Auckland, Christchurch, Dunedin and Wellington. This will increase over time as additional records are added to the system.

There is also a wealth of information in Archway about the government of New Zealand from 1840 to the current day. Detailed histories of government departments, the functions they performed and the types of records they created provide an essential background for locating records, and understanding their content and purpose.

Please note that Archway contains descriptive information only; it does not yet provide on-line access to the text of the records themselves.

Archway replaces our earlier finding aid systems, including ELMS, and most of the information from these systems has been transferred to Archway. The quality and completeness of this information does vary, and work is underway to bring it up to a consistent standard.

Future developments planned for Archway include:

  • On-line ordering (click here to find out about ordering records)
  • On-line access to digital images
  • Access to electronic records
  • Information about government archives held in other institutions
  • Information about records still held by government agencies

NB. Archives New Zealand is primarily responsible for the records of central government and ministers of the Crown. See the Archives New Zealand website for a list of the major institutions in New Zealand that hold private and local government archives and manuscripts.