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I have spent a lot of time searching DigitalNZ over the last few days. It is the easiest and quickest way to find images and information from a range of New Zealand sources.

I have used Papers Past quite a bit, but DigitalNZ makes that easier to use. But here’s a lot resources available than that.

I have searched on places and found new photos and information, all easily browsed and accessed.

I have searched on relatives names, and spent hours going through my great grandfather’s history, from his work as Secretary of the Bluff Harbour Board for many years, to his community involvement and his recreational activities – he is on record as being involved with Southland Rugby (not quite Otago but close), bowls and even draughts competitions.

I found detailed military records of my grandfather, which includes his work and medical histories, and his service and promotions through two World Wars. I knew some of it but have found out more details, including the names and ranks of those attending his military funeral.

This took me a couple of minutes to find (1861):


And (1904):

Article image

Anyway, that’s just of personal interest to me, but it’s a great way of searching for all sorts of information.

If searching on names try variations, like ‘Bill Bob George’ and B.B.George’.

And be prepared to spend some time on it.


Welcome to the refreshed, the next step in DigitalNZ’s evolution. Here we’re developing and testing new and improved ways for you to find, share and use amazing New Zealand content.

In 2017 we’ve developed a fresh, more user-friendly and lovely-to-look-at version of We’re starting with a very basic version of the website and we’ll regularly make both small and substantial changes to this site throughout this year and beyond. These changes will often be based on your feedback, so any thoughts you have for us are hugely helpful and will feed directly into the site’s development.


Or Explore – there are currently 30,510,788 items in DigitalNZ