Orkney Archive aims to promote an understanding of the history of the Orkney Islands by selecting, preserving and providing access to archives and published material relating to Orkney. This includes the archives of Orkney Islands Council and its predecessors, local individuals, estates, businesses and organisations.
The service was awarded accreditation in November 2017.
If you are tracing your Orcadian family roots we can provide access to records which may help you find out more about them. These include:
- Valuation rolls, electoral rolls and census schedules
- Old Parish registers and newspapers on microfilm
- School records and photographs
We hold a wide range of records which will aid research into almost any aspect of the history of Orkney and its people, including the Orkney Room which contains thousands of publications relating to these islands plus Caithness and Shetland, dating from the 17th century onwards.
The Photographic Archive contains a large collection of Orkney images from the 1860s onwards, and prints can be purchased. Find out more on the Photographic Archive page.
Sound and film
We hold an extensive collection of oral history recordings and audio visual materials dating from the 1950s onwards. Copies of recordings can be purchased. Find out more on the Sound Archive page.
Visit our Downloads page to access a guide to the records held by Orkney Archive. You can also download a number of other useful and interesting documents.