Family History / Genealogy

If you’re just starting to research your family history, or you may be needing help with some pieces of your puzzle, we can help you with your genealogy research.

As well as published family histories we have Stone’s Otago & Southland directories, shipping and school records, current and historical electoral rolls and early local newspapers on microfilm from 1871 onwards.

Upcoming Genealogy Events

Family History Resources

Our library, and a series of online resources, are available to help you discover your family history.

Library Resources

Research Collection
The Research Collection has many resources useful for students and researchers. It includes historical information, statistical data, Government publications and New Zealand history. The library also has a reference collection which covers most topics. The St Andrew’s collection contains material about Scottish heritage. Ask at the Information Services desk for these items which can only be used in this area of the library.

Local Collection
The Local Collection has items relating to Invercargill, Southland, Stewart Island, and other southern islands. It includes books, directories, maps, CDs, DVDs and other formats. Some early Otago items are also included post-1860s. We try and obtain a copy of all published material with local content or by a local person. Ask at the Information Services desk for these items which can only be used in this area of the library.

We hold recent copies of most local and national papers. We store historic copies of the Southland Times, the Southland Daily News and other local newspapers. Some copies are on microfilm. Ask at the Information Services desk for these items. Library members can also access newspapers online.


This database can only be accessed from inside the library.
Provides access to census records, military records, land records, probate records, church records, directories, passenger lists and more. It includes New Zealand electoral rolls 1853-1981 and Māori electoral rolls 1908 and 1919.

Useful Websites


Denise Grant

Research & Family History Librarian

Denise is our wonderful Research and Family History Librarian.