Manuscripts are the unpublished records of individuals and organisations, preserved for their historical and research value. Sometimes they are also called archives. Manuscripts include things like letters, emails, journals, diaries, notebooks, reminiscences, speeches, scrapbooks, minute books, and drafts of literary and other works.

Search for manuscripts

Start your search for manuscripts using TAPUHI.

Manuscripts Collection

Manuscripts are held in the Turnbull Library Manuscripts Collection. The collection includes the papers of Māori, Pākehā and Pacific Island people active in all areas of New Zealand and Pacific life.

More about the Manuscripts Collection

Manuscripts & Pictorial website

On this website you can browse digitised manuscripts and items from the pictorial collections of the Alexander Turnbull Library, including 100,000 pages from the papers of Sir Donald McLean and more than 70,000 New Zealand and Pacific images. You can also find digitised manuscripts on the National Library Beta.

Go to the Manuscripts & Pictorial website

Got to the National Library Beta

Archive of New Zealand Music

The Archive of New Zealand Music is a special collection within the Manuscripts Collection. It contains manuscript material relating to New Zealand music, musicians, composers and organisations.

More about the Archive of New Zealand Music

Ranfurly Collection

The Ranfurly Collection contains digital copies of papers relating to Lord Ranfurly, Governor of New Zealand from 1897 to 1904. Images of items like letters, journals, reminiscences, and scrapbooks reflect Lord Ranfurly’s activities throughout New Zealand and the South Pacific.

Ranfurly Collection website

Items relating to manuscripts in other collections

Published, pictorial, and sound items relating to particular groups of manuscripts are held in other Turnbull Library collections.

More about the Alexander Turnbull Library collections

Manuscript collections in other institutions

Libraries, archives, and museums throughout New Zealand contain other important manuscript collections. Most government archives are held at Archives New Zealand.

New Zealand Libraries, Museums, and Archives – Te Puna Web Directory website

You can find information about many New Zealand institutions and the manuscript collections they hold by searching the National Register of Archives and Manuscripts and the Directory of Archives in New Zealand.

National Register of Archives and Manuscripts website

Directory of Archives in New Zealand / Ngā Pae Mahara - Archives New Zealand website