Our collection centres on the photographic history of the Otautau District. Donors have contributed single photographs as well as several photo albums at once. Significant holdings are the Miss Donnan Collection and the Otautau Primary School Collection.

Currently, we have a good selection of photographs from the 1920s and earlier but are hoping that the public will come forward with photographs from the 1930s to the present day so that we can have a more comprehensive record of our history. We have a scanner and can scan and return originals.

We have archives of local groups and organisations that are no longer active such as the:
  • Central Western Cricket Sub Association
  • Drummond Cricket Club
  • Drummond Ploughing Match Association
  • Loyal Otautau Lodge, MUIOOFS
  • N. M. & A Co. Ltd, 1912-1915
  • Orawia Social Club
  • Otahuti Cricket Club
  • Otautau & District Historical Society, 1974-1983
  • Otautau Adult Education Committee, 1963-1968
  • Otautau Girl Guides
  • Otautau Jaycees
  • Otautau Jaycees Ladies
  • Otautau Lawn Tennis Club
  • Otautau Marching Club
  • Otautau Public Library
  • Otautau School Centennial Committee
  • Otautau Swimming Club
  • Southland County Press Association
  • Southland Electrical Power Board
  • Wallace A & P Association, 1920-1993
  • Woodlaw Beech Co.
Family History and other Manuscripts
We have the following written histories:
  • Chilton Family, 1793-2010
  • From Scotland to Strathmore and Bayswater: A history of the Lindsay and Collie Families - compiled by Eleanor Watt
  • Glentruin Stud: Glentruin Stud and its stallions and mares; Alex Chisholm and his genealogy; Veterinary History, Racing History; Local History - compiled by Colin F. Moore
  • That's Amazing: Gladfield Road Happenings, People - Place - Time - compiled by Alister R. Fraser
  • The Brownridges of Fairfax - compiled by Lynley & Ian Brownridge
  • The McLeish Farm at Gladfield 1893-2006 - by M. E. Barkman
  • The Recollections of Mick Menzies: A story of fundraising in Otautau, Southland, in the 1970s and 1980s - by Mick Menzies
  • History of Otautau Play Centre, 1958-1983
  • The Eade Family of Surrey
  • Pathways of the Poole - Tuckwell Descendants, vols 1 and 2.
  • James Family History and supplement
  • Eason Family War Memories - letters during World War II
  • A copy of Emigration of Seatters and Rendalls 1861-1925, a family history by Gordon Seatter.
  • Assorted loose leaf histories
Oral History
We have a small collection of oral histories, courtesy of the Southland Oral History group, on the flood of 1984. Several people were interviewed by Nancy Burnett about the impact of the flood in Otautau and the surrounding area.


  • Women's Division of Federated Farmers - Otautau branch
  • Newspaper Clippings - 1960s-present

Phone Books
  • Southland & Districts - 2004, 2005, 2006, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012.
  • Invercargill & District - 1958, 1983, 1987
  • Community Service Directory (Districts of Nightcaps, Ohai, Orawia, Otautau, and Tuatapere): 2002, 2004, 2006, 2009.
Our map collection includes:
  • Plan of Town of Hodgkinson (copy; 1926)
  • Plan of Otautau Township (photocopy; surveyed in 1872)
  • Rural and Urban Sections of the Otautau District (2008)
  • The Northern Portion of Wallace County (no date)
  • The Southern Portion of Wallace County (no date)
  • Town of Otautau (no date)