Research Databases & Websites

Upcoming changes to databases

From 1 July access to the following databases will be ending:

  • Consumer Health
  • Issues and controversies online
  • Haynes manuals
  • Clarity IELTS
  • Access video on demand

From 1 July users viewing videos on Beamafilm will be limited to 10 views per month.

As a Library member you have access to a range of research databases and web services that normally require a subscription. In order to use our databases you will need to know your library card number and password. 

What is my library card number?

Your library card number is the 8-digit number found just below the barcode on the back of your card.  

Can’t remember your password? Message us on Facebook, send us an email, or phone us on (03) 2111 444 and we can reset it for you.


Films & Documentaries

Access Video on Demand 
A collection of thousands of high-quality videos for your viewing pleasure. From Award-winning documentaries to how-to programs that make life easier and richer, top-quality performances spanning the arts, biographies of history-makers past and present, a variety of TV shows and movies, and more.

Library members now have access to Beamafilm, which streams documentaries and independent films, with a focus on New Zealand and Australian content. You stream films on your phone, tablet, or computer.

Our partners at Ngā Taonga have brought together over 700 items of film, television and audio history that were made in, around or about our region. 

Arts, Music, Literature, Business, & News Media

Australia New Zealand Reference Centre Plus
Includes leading Australia/NZ journals and international magazines in full text; full text reference books; over 80,000 full text biographies and an image collection of over 510,000 photos, maps and flags.

NoveList Plus (What is NoveList?)
Find your next read from the recommended lists of fiction and non-fiction for all ages.

Access to a range of local, national, and international newspapers and magazines.

Family History, History, & Biography

Ancestry Library Edition
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 spanning 1853 – 1981, as well as Māori electoral rolls spanning 1908 – 1919.


Log in – returning user
Sign up – First time users

Generosity – GiveMe
Search for scholarships, awards and grants to help with study or professional development.  Includes closing dates, application requirements and contact details.

Generosity – GivER
This database can only be accessed from inside the Library.
Search to find companies by the kind of relationship you want (e.g. sponsorship), the area you work in, a particular brand or business activity.

Generosity – GivUS
Find information for voluntary organisations looking for funding.  Includes closing dates, application requirements and contact details.

General Reference

Consumer Health
Fast and easy access to reliable medical information from trustworthy and recognisable medical publishers.  This database offers international coverage for an enormous range of public health subjects, including pandemics, disaster preparedness, and obesity.

Access Video on Demand 
A collection of thousands of high-quality videos for your viewing pleasure. From Award-winning documentaries to how-to programs that make life easier and richer, top-quality performances spanning the arts, biographies of history-makers past and present, a variety of TV shows and movies, and more.

Issues and Controversies Online 
Explores and analyses hundreds of hot topics in politics, crime, law, education, health, family, science, race, rights, society, and culture. This new database offers in-depth articles designed to inspire thought-provoking debates and research papers.

Haynes Manuals AllAccess
Get access to manuals which cover repairs and servicing of cars and motorcycles

Clarity IELTS
Road to IELTS is divided into four parts – reading, listening, speaking and writing. In each skill area you can prepare for the test by reading information about each paper, listening to the online video and taking the interactive practice questions.

Encyclopedia Britannica
Find current events, pictures and links to relevant internet resources. Search different levels of Britannica using Elementary Encyclopedia for younger students, Student Encyclopedia or Concise Encyclopedia for advanced level of research.

Find full text articles on education material as well as citations to other related information. 

Index New Zealand
Abstracts of articles from New Zealand and Pacific journals from 1950s onwards.

Find NZ Articles
Index to multiple databases.

MasterFILE Complete
A collection of popular full-text magazines, reference books and other highly-regarded sources from the world’s leading publishers, dating back as far as 1922. Covering virtually every general interest subject area, it also includes an extensive collection of photos, maps and flags.



New Zealand Government
Information about Parliament, cabinet and all government departments.

Local Councils
Information about Local Government in New Zealand.

NZ Legislation
NZ statutes, bills and statutory regulations.

Careers NZ
Advice and support about careers and CV templates.

Road Code
Licence information and study guide for the road code for cars, motorbikes and heavy vehicles.


Statistics NZ
Statistical information on population, economics, regions and more.

DigitalNZ Ā–Tihi o Aotearoa 
Connects to reliable digital collections from libraries, museums, galleries and more. Includes interviews, video, newspaper clippings, maps, photographs, audio and artworks from past to today.

Papers Past
Search historic newspapers including Southland papers and NZ  Parliamentary Papers.

Te Ara
Encyclopedia of NZ history, culture, places and more. Includes Dictionary of NZ Biography.

NZ Electronic Text Centre
Digitised texts of NZ and Pacific items.

Hocken Library
Hocken’s collections celebrate the histories, cultures and natural environments of Aotearoa New Zealand, the Pacific and Antarctica with special emphasis on southern New Zealand. Includes Hockensnapshot – photographs of NZ people and places.

Archives New Zealand
Archives New Zealand holdings include taonga such as the Treaty of Waitangi te Tiriti o Waitangi, government documents, maps, paintings, photographs and films.

Alexander Turnbull Library
The Alexander Turnbull Library provides world-class research services. Turnbull Library staff are experts in all kinds of topic areas, and research in general.

Family History

Invercargill Cemetery Search
Allows you to search the Eastern, Bluff, Green Point, and Saint Johns Cemeteries, and the Invercargill Crematorium databases.

Southland District Cemeteries
Search the Southland District cemeteries for ancestors.

Births Deaths and Marriages Online
Provides historical data only.

Papers Past
Digitised, searchable historic newspapers including Southland Times 1862-1920.

NZ Yesteryears
Passenger lists for ships that came to Southland.

Online Cenotaph
A biographical resource which contains information on people who served in the New Zealand military.

Marks the First World War centenary from 2014-2019.


🆕 Kareao – the Ngāi Tahu Archive
Comprehensive site created by Ngāi Tahu which provides access to the tribal archive, including manuscripts, photographs, maps, biographies, oral histories, taonga and audio-visual material.

🆕 Kā Huru Manu – the Ngāi Tahu Atlas
Interactive mapping of the traditional place names and associated stories within the Ngāi Tahu rohe (tribal area).

Maori Land Online
Ownership, trustees and information about customary Maori land.

Maori Land Court
What is Maori land and how to apply to the Maori Land Court.

Maori Land Court Minute Books Index
Minutes were kept of all Maori Land Court proceedings and this is an index only to the Minute Books.
Tikanga, whakairo, te ko reo.

Maori Land Legislation 
Te Ture Whenua Maori Act 1993.

Te Runanga o Ngai Tahu
Everything Ngai Tahu.

Journal of the Polynesian Society
Social, cultural, historical information about the past and present lives of indigenous Pacific peoples, including Maori.

He Tohu Exhibition
He Tohu is a permanent exhibition of three iconic constitutional documents that helped shape Aotearoa New Zealand and what it has become today.

Te Tiriti o Waitangi
Te Tiriti o Waitangi is Aotearoa New Zealand’s founding document. This site covers the events that led up to the Treaty.  It explains what is written in the documents, and the crucial differences between the Māori and English versions.


Medianet is a digital video resource where you can view films from Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision’s archival collections, for free.

Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision is the brand name for the New Zealand Archive of Film, Television and Sound Ngā Taonga Whitiāhua Me Ngā Taonga Kōrero. While the Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision head office is located in Wellington, the archive is national in reach. Medianet was created to allow people in communities around New Zealand to view moving images from the collections through a network of partner organisations.

Medianet allows you to view hundreds of titles. These include feature films, home movies, short films, documentaries, local history items, music videos, children’s films and much more.

View film and video collections around the country through Medianet – a digital database where you can watch over 1000 short films, features, documentaries, television commercials and more. Every three months new videos are loaded into the database.

The earliest New Zealand film is about the departure of soldiers for the Boer War in 1900. Local items of interest include Roger Donaldsons 1973 documentary on Burt Munro and the 1928 short film Daughter of Invercargill.

The highest film rating is M – suitable for mature audiences 16 and over (but still unrestricted).

You will find the following categories: Advertising, Animation, Documentary, General history, Home movies, Music, Newsreels, Short film, Sport, War