The Northern Territory Archives Centre is jointly operated by the National Archives and Library & Archives NT.
Researchers can access both Commonwealth and state records from the one location.
For more information about the records of Library & Archives NT please visit their website.
The collection in Darwin
Collections of the National Archives of Australia and Library & Archives NT span more than 170 years of the Territory's history. Records are taken from the Commonwealth Government, the Northern Territory Government, Community and Personal archives, and the Northern Territory Oral History collection.
Treasures of the Northern Territory Archives Centre include:
- the 1843 notebook of John McArthur from the settlement at Port Essington
- the first meteorological recordings from the original site for the town of Palmerston at Adam Bay at the mouth of the Adelaide River
- further recordings from the new site of Palmerston on the Port of Darwin in 1865
- Certificates of Exemption from the dictation test for many non-European residents of Darwin during the White Australia Policy era
- Police Journals from stations across the Territory
- records relating to the administration of welfare for Aboriginal people throughout the Territory from the late 1920s
The inwards correspondence of the Government Resident from 1870 until 1912 and pastoral lease records dating from this era provide valuable historical insight into this period in Territory history.
There are many records documenting the impact of World War II on the Top End, including the evacuation of civilians from all areas. The Post Office diary with its entry of February 19th 1942 illustrates the events of that pivotal day. The collections include many images donated by former Service personnel who served in the Territory during this era.
The remarkable Oral History collection, compiled over 30 years, includes recorded memories reaching back over 100 years of Territory history. The collections also includes more recent records of the development of Uluru-Kata Tjuta and Kakadu national parks. The devastation of Darwin by Cyclone Tracy and the subsequent reconstruction of the city is also well documented.
Entry to the National Archives is free.
Summer opening hours
The research centre will be closed from Monday 23 December 2019. Usual opening hours resume from Thursday 2 January 2020.
Pedestrian access is through the front of the building, on Kelsey Crescent.
All public areas of the National Archives are wheelchair accessible.
A toilet with disabled facilities is situated near the reading room.
Visitors with recognised assistance animals, including guide and hearing dogs, are welcome
There are a small number of car parks available in front of the building on Kelsey Crescent.
The Darwin Bus Service operates Route 10 from Harry Chan Avenue to Casuarina and vice versa and stops at Bagot Road (near Skelton Street) a five minute walk to the National Archives. Tel: (08) 8924 7666
The main taxi rank in the city is in Knuckey Street, near Smith Street Mall. From Casuarina Shopping Centre, the taxi rank is at the side entrance near Kmart.
PO Box 24