Dunedin Family History Group

Otago and Southland related research

Hocken Collections

Hocken Library





Location: Hocken Building,

90 Anzac Avenue
(corner of Parry Street), Dunedin

Postal Address:

P.O. Box 56, Dunedin
Telephone: 479.1100 Fax: 479.5078

Archives inquiries: archives.hocken@library.otago.ac.nz
General reference inquiries:

Opening Hours:
Monday – Friday 9.30 am – 5 pm
Tuesday 5 – 9 pm.
Saturday 9 am – 12 am

Charges: Free entry. Charges for photocopying. No material can be borrowed.


Newspapers – These cover Dunedin and Otago eg. Mt Ida Chronicle, Cromwell Argus, Lake Wakatipu Mail, Dunstan Times, Tapanui Courier, to name but a few.
Directories – Of all Dunedin repositories the Hocken Collections hold the most extensive and complete set of directories for Otago and also New Zealand – these are available in the reading room from the open shelves.
Maori Land Court Records – These are very valuable if you have Maori ancestry and are available on microfilm from the librarian. Indexes to places/dates where/when the Court sat are available for consultation in the reception area.
Books and Periodicals – The library holds a full set of the New Zealand Gazette, The Provincial Gazette (contains many lists of official appointments) and The Appendices to the Journals of the House of Representatives (AJHR) (which have annual reports of government departments).
Maps – They hold a large number of Otago maps which can be consulted.
School Records – The Hocken is the official repository for Otago Education Board records. The Hocken also hold some kindergarten records. They hold some secondary school records e.g. Otago Girls’ High School, King Edward Technical College, Kaikorai Valley High School (now Kaikorai Valley College) and Kavanagh College.
Archives of non Government Organisations –
Business – The library holds a large number of deposits of business archives including those of legal firms, The Otago Daily Times, the Colonial Bank, Insurance Companies, corner dairies etc. They also hold trade union records.
Local – The library holds some county and borough records which are particularly useful for rating books and valuation rolls eg. Tuapeka and Vincent Borough Council records. Most other rating records are at the Dunedin City Council Archives.
Social – A large number of sporting, cultural and other social clubs have deposited their archives in the library.
Photographs – The library holds a large collection of photographs of people and places.
Church Records
The Collection is the major repository for Anglican Church Records for Otago and Southland.
They also hold Methodist Church records.
Many of the marriage records have been transcribed by the NZSG Dunedin Branch and are available in both sections of the Hocken and OSM on a self-help basis.

The Hocken Library Online


Guides to the Collection