Research and records held
PRONI holds literally millions of documents that relate chiefly, but by no means exclusively, to Northern Ireland. These records cover a period from c.1600 (with a few dating back as far as the early 13th century) to the present day.
PRONI is the official place of deposit for historical public records in Northern Ireland – this includes the records of Government Departments (formerly Ministries) and other non-Departmental public organisations such as courts, schools and hospitals.
In addition, PRONI has also collected a wide range of archives from private sources over the years. These range from a single letter written by an ordinary individual to a vast landed estate archive containing thousands of documents. Other privately deposited archives include the records of churches, businesses and a number of photographic collections. Lengthy introductions to some of our most prominent private collections have been compiled and are available in this section. These introductions generally summarise the contents of the archive, but moreover give a wealth of information about the family or organisation who created the archive.
In this section you will find information about the archives PRONI holds, how to identify the archive you want (i.e. using the catalogues, guides and indexes), ordering and handling documents. You will also find guidance on copying, copyright and publication of archival material.