Local History & Archives


Local history

Our local history collection can provide you with resources and professional assistance to aid in your research of Palmerston North and the Manawatu region.
Whether you’re looking for information about family from Palmerston North, a local building or landmark, or you simply want to learn about the region and its people we can help.
Some of the resources available include:

Historical Newspapers
Issues of local newspapers dating back to 1877 are held on microfilm and microfiche. Some are also available online. The library has a  index to the Manawatu Standard covering births, deaths, marriages and articles of local historical interest. This can be searched using our library catalogue. Enter your search term in the “Search Catalog” box. If there are any items relating to this term in the Newspaper Index, you can locate these items under the “local news index” tab – please note that some searches will require you to “Switch to databases” before the “local news index” tab appears.

New Digital Archive – Manawatū Heritage
Libraries and Community Services have launched a new local history digital archive – manawatuheritage.pncc.govt.nz containing all of the wonderful collections previously available on Pātaka Ipurangi plus new content we couldn’t previously showcase, such as books, photo albums, post cards, audio and video recordings. You can explore this existing content by searching key words and using dynamic filters to refine your results.

Manawatū Heritage is also a living heritage tool which encourages active participation from the community by accepting digital uploads and written articles from the public. By creating a log-in, you can upload your own stories and photographs to the repository as well as comment on individual items, share your findings via email and social media, as well as download high resolution copies of out of copyright materials.



CM Ross building

The Ian Matheson City Archives holds the historical records of the Palmerston North City Council, including any superseded bodies, and records from the community, such as local businesses, organisations, individuals and families. We aim to provide resources that comprehensively chart the history of Palmerston North and the local area.

To provide a timely service to our customers we strongly suggest that you order the archival resources you require, or talk to us first about your needs.

We also encourage the donation of local records. We can talk with you about what is potentially of value for long term preservation, and can also give advice on how you can care for your own collections.

Archives Search
Archive Search is our database listing the collections we hold.