A special collection at the Lee Kong Chian Reference Library with both General Reference and Singapore and Southeast Asian titles.
Custodian of Singapore’s Memories
If you want to see maps of Singapore from the early 19th century or listen to an audio recording of someone who experienced life in Singapore during World War 2, you should pay a visit to the National Archives of Singapore (NAS).
NAS is the official custodian of Singapore’s collective memory and it is where you can find the most comprehensive collection of Singapore’s archival records. Some of these, date back to the early 19th century and include government files, private memoirs, historical maps, photographs, oral history interviews and audio-visual materials.
The NAS was officially set up in 1968, and some of its collection comprised colonial historical records that had already been collected and preserved by Singapore's Archivist, Mr Tan Soo Chye, since 1938.
Our 2 locations are also historically interesting. Our current address at Canning Rise used to be the site of the former Anglo-Chinese School (ACS) and the conserved administrative block of the school where we are located boasts a unique Art Decor design. In 2005, we acquired the Former Ford Factory site - where the British surrendered to the Japanese during World War II.
The International Council of Archives is the professional organisation for the world archival community, dedicated to promoting the preservation, development, and use of the world's archival heritage. It brings together national archive administrations, professional associations of archivists, regional and local archives of other organisations as well as individual archivists, from more than 180 countries and territories. The National Archives of Singapore has benefited from the conferences organised by ICA where staff can share ideas and exchange expertise with other countries.
The National Archives of Singapore is a member of the Southeast Asian Regional Branch of the International Council on Archives, established during the Inaugural Conference of SARBICA in Kuala Lumpur on 9 July 1968. It has the distinction to be the first regional branch of ICA and is responsible for carrying out the policy and programmes of ICA in this region. At present, SARBICA comprises the National Archives institutions of Brunei Darussalam, Indonesia, Malaysia, The Philippines, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam and Singapore.
If you are unsure if we have the materials you need, please feel free to drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or enquiry to check with our archivists.
If you already know the materials you wish to access, please submit a request to view them through our Archives Online portal and our officers will follow up accordingly. Please note that for some records extra checks and authorisations may be required. Available through Archives Online Platform.
If you already know the materials you wish to reproduce, please submit a request to do so through our Archives Online portal and our officers will follow up accordingly. Please note that there may be applicable administrative fees and some materials may need further checks and authorisations. Available through Archives Online.
Please note that NAS only supports the search for civil marriages registered on or before 15 Sep 1961. There will also be an administrative fee for performing the search whether or not a record is successful.
Please note that NAS only supports the search for records that were transferred to NAS by MOE -pre-1982. Due to PDPA restrictions, you may only request for a search of your own records. There will be an administrative fee for performing the search whether or not the search is successful.
To book for the limited seats at our Reading Room, please plan ahead and book your time slot before visiting us.