Archives Reading Room Closure NS50 Bukit Brown Citizen Archivist irememberOrchard

National Archives of Singapore

Visit our Archives Reading Room at 1 Canning Rise, Singapore 179868 to consult these records and more:

Email: nas@nlb.gov.sg
Opening Hours
Monday – Friday:
9.00am – 5.30pm
Saturday:
9.00am – 12.00pm

Memories of War and its Legacies

Sep 2, 2017
Memories of War and its Legacies

In 1992, the Singapore Heritage Society, with the support of partners including the National Archives, Oral History Department (now the Oral History Centre) and the National Museum, published Syonan : Singapore Under the Japanese Occupation 1942-1945, written by Lee Geok Boi, to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Fall of Singapore. A key source for […]

Total Defence

Aug 31, 2017
Total Defence

This essay was originally published in The 2nd Decade: Nation Building In Progress 1975-1985 publication. To view the Live Notes, please visit: www.nas.gov.sg/1stCab/7585/travel_exh_Sec2.html   “Defence cannot just be the responsibility of the government or the armed forces. It is the responsibility of the whole nation….National will is thus an essential political recondition of any convincing […]

Fit to fight: Reservists on the frontline

Aug 30, 2017
Fit to fight: Reservists on the frontline

This essay was originally published in The 2nd Decade: Nation Building In Progress 1975-1985 publication. To view the Live Notes, please visit: www.nas.gov.sg/1stCab/7585/travel_exh_Sec2.html There was also a strong focus in the second decade on improving the quality of our reservists, i.e. those Singapore citizens who had completed their full time National Service. By 1984, reservists […]

Turbo-charging the armed forces

Aug 29, 2017
Turbo-charging the armed forces

This essay was originally published in The 2nd Decade: Nation Building In Progress 1975-1985 publication. To view the Live Notes, please visit: www.nas.gov.sg/1stCab/7585/travel_exh_Sec2.html The decade saw the SAF develop a substantially stronger navy and air force and make continuous enhancements to the army in its efforts to transform itself into a technologically superior armed forces. […]

Friendly forces: Strengthening regional defence

Aug 28, 2017
Friendly forces: Strengthening regional defence

This essay was originally published in The 2nd Decade: Nation Building In Progress 1975-1985 publication. To view the Live Notes, please visit: www.nas.gov.sg/1stCab/7585/travel_exh_Sec2.html To find shared solutions to the security threat posed by Vietnam and the Soviet Union, Singapore deepened its defence relations with both fellow ASEAN nations and friendly countries with trade and strategic […]

External threats: Storm Clouds over Indochina

Aug 25, 2017
External threats: Storm Clouds over Indochina

 This essay was originally published in The 2nd Decade: Nation Building In Progress 1975-1985 publication. To view the Live Notes, please visit: www.nas.gov.sg/1stCab/7585/travel_exh_Sec2.html. Security problems dominating the first decade had largely receded by the second decade. Bilateral ties with Indonesia steadily improved following the end of Konfrontasi in 1966. Communist insurgency, while still a risk, […]

Defending Our Sovereignty

Aug 23, 2017
Defending Our Sovereignty

This essay was originally published in 10 Years That Shaped A Nation publication. To view the Live Notes, please visit: www.nas.gov.sg/1stCab/exh_catalog1.htm. “Without the defence capability that NS made possible, Singapore may not have survived – let alone prospered…More than anything  else, it is the spirit and commitment of our NS men that makes the SAF a […]

Interns Reflections – Mandy Lee

Aug 7, 2017
Interns Reflections – Mandy Lee

Interns Reflections is a series of posts by our interns, recounting their experience with National Archives of Singapore. From deciphering manuscript handwriting, to poring over listings and records, to heading out into the field to conduct oral history interviews, our interns have the chance to go behind the scenes to see the multi-varied nature of […]

Interns Reflections – Lim Hui Xiang

Jul 8, 2017
Interns Reflections – Lim Hui Xiang

Interns Reflections is a series of posts by our interns, recounting their experience with National Archives of Singapore. From deciphering manuscript handwriting, to poring over listings and records, to heading out into the field to conduct oral history interviews, our interns have the chance to go behind the scenes to see the multi-varied nature of […]

Surviving the Japanese Occupation: War and its Legacies

Feb 17, 2017
Surviving the Japanese Occupation: War and its Legacies

Surviving the Japanese Occupation: War and its Legacies is a permanent World War Two exhibition presented by the National Archives of Singapore at the historic Former Ford Factory. This was the place where the British forces surrendered unconditionally to the Imperial Japanese Army on 15 February 1942. The exhibition presents the events and memories surrounding the […]

A Foreign Policy Outlined: S Rajaratnam Speaks at Singapore’s Admission to the U.N.

Jan 17, 2017
A Foreign Policy Outlined: S Rajaratnam Speaks at Singapore’s Admission to the U.N.

This legendary speech, given by S Rajaratnam to the United Nations (U.N.) General Assembly in 21 September 1965 on the occasion of Singapore’s admission into the U.N., was recently cited by Professor Kishore Mahbubani, Dean of the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, as a classic outlining the enduring principles of Singapore’s foreign policy.

Guide to Transcribing Straits Settlements Records

Jan 17, 2017
Guide to Transcribing Straits Settlements Records

Keen to try your hand at transcribing cursive, handwritten records but daunted by inky loops spanning the entire page? Fear not, a batch of NAS interns (Abigail Chew, Angeline Lee and Sandy Wang) have crafted a guide to transcribing the Straits Settlements Records.

irememberOrchard

Jan 15, 2017
irememberOrchard

Missed  irememberOrchard, an exhibition at library@Orchard from  23 October 2014 to 26 April 2015 organised by the National Archives of Singapore? Read all about it below, and follow the series of posts here!

PM’s New Year Message, 1982

Jan 3, 2017
PM’s New Year Message, 1982

On the eve of New Year’s Day, 1982, Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew gave this solemn speech to the nation. Singapore  faced serious challenges arising from a turbulent global economy which was in a major recession. In this speech titled “Difficult Times Ahead” PM Lee minced no words despite the New Year festivities

WWII comes to Singapore

Dec 8, 2016
WWII comes to Singapore

75 years ago on this date, shortly after 4am, people living in Singapore had their first experience of aerial bombings. Japanese naval bombers and Zero fighter planes bombed the town area, hitting Chinatown and Raffles Place, as well as the airfields at Seletar and Tengah. This was the first time that civilians living in Singapore experienced war […]

Behind-the-Scenes With Abigail Huang Reference Archivist!

Dec 7, 2016
Behind-the-Scenes With Abigail Huang Reference Archivist!

We are happy to launch our first interview with the staff of NAS. Join us behind the scenes as we chat with Abigail Huang, our reference archivist who is no stranger to those who write in or call in or visit us at the Archives Reading Room.

Dr Goh Keng Swee’s Insights on Golfing

Nov 18, 2016
Dr Goh Keng Swee’s Insights on Golfing

In this extract from a humorous & insightful speech he gave at the opening of the Tanah Merah Golf Club in 1984, Dr Goh Keng Swee, our former Deputy Prime Minister and first cabinet member, shared with guests why, in his view, many take to the game of golf

Law of the Land: Constitutional Documents

Nov 18, 2016
Law of the Land: Constitutional Documents

Law of the Land: Highlights of Singapore’s Constitutional Documents is an exhibition on Singapore’s constitutional history – from its founding in 1819 to independence in 1965 – organised by the National Archives of Singapore  and  National Library Board, and  hosted at the National Gallery Singapore.

The Bukit Brown Cemetery Burial Registers 1922 – 1972

Aug 19, 2016
The Bukit Brown Cemetery Burial Registers 1922 – 1972

This is a post contributed by a private researcher, Ms Khoo Ee Hoon, who shares her knowledge about the Bukit Brown Burial Registers which she has been consulting for her private genealogical research.

S. Rajaratnam on Singapore’s State Symbols

Aug 10, 2016
S. Rajaratnam on Singapore’s State Symbols

One of the Singapore government’s first aims after attaining full internal self-government from the British  in 1959, was to cultivate a common identity. Our state symbols which were unveiled in 1959 became an important way to rally Singaporeans from different backgrounds and communities to a common purpose.

Majulah Singapura – Composing a National Anthem

Aug 8, 2016
Majulah Singapura – Composing a National Anthem

Majulah Singapura, meaning “Onward Singapore” was originally composed as an song for Singapore’s City Council in 1958 to commemorate the reopening of Victoria Theatre after a major restoration. We trace the origins of Singapore’s national anthem in this article.

The National Day Parade Through the Years, 1966-2012

Aug 4, 2016
The National Day Parade Through the Years, 1966-2012

We look at how the National Day parade evolved over the years through the archives of our the Ministry of Communication and Information’s Photography Unit. This selection of images was curated by Ms Janelle Chua, our Outreach manager !

Mapping Singapore: 1819–2014

Jul 13, 2016
Mapping Singapore: 1819–2014

This fascinating essay detailing the history of mapping in Singapore between 1819 and 2014 was written by Mr Mok Ly Yng,  a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, one of Singapore’s leading map consultants and a regular visitor at the National Archives.

The Mystery of Kunnuck Mistree

Jun 28, 2016
The Mystery of Kunnuck Mistree

The National Archives of Singapore launched the Citizen Archivist Project  in March 2015, inviting members of the public to assist in making archival records more accessible. One of our volunteer transcribers, Ms Vandana Aggarwal, writes about an Indian migrant, Kunnuck Mistree, whose life story captured in the records piqued her interest.

David Marshall: Singapore’s First Chief Minister

Jun 22, 2016
David Marshall: Singapore’s First Chief Minister

David Marshall (1908-1995), the celebrated Singaporean nationalist, politician, lawyer and diplomat,  was a key political leader in the history of post-war Singapore. 

Centrepoint Kids

Jun 3, 2016
Centrepoint Kids

Centrepoint, a shopping centre along Orchard Road, used to worry parents of angst-ridden teenagers, especially when its name was used in conjunction with ‘kids’. The terms ‘Centrepoint kids’, ‘Daimaru kids’, ‘Far East kids’ were bandied about in newspapers and television features during the mid-1980s, describing teenagers who turned up by the hundreds at these complexes

1819 Survey Plan of Singapore Harbour

May 10, 2016
1819 Survey Plan of Singapore Harbour

One of the earliest British surveys of Singapore island, this map shows Singapore harbour and adjacent areas, including a few offshore islands, such as the St. John’s Island, at the time of Stamford Raffles’ first landing on Singapore. Captain Daniel Rofs (also commonly spelt as Ross), the hydrographer of the East India Company (EIC) who […]

Bukit Brown Cemetery Burial Registers Online : 1922 to 1972

Apr 19, 2016
Bukit Brown Cemetery Burial Registers Online : 1922 to 1972

The National Archives of Singapore has the burial registers of Bukit Brown Cemetery dating from April 1922 up till December 1972. To facilitate access, the records have been digitised and can be viewed online.

The Inche Yusof Ishak Collection

Mar 29, 2016
The Inche Yusof Ishak Collection

Inche Yusof bin Ishak was the first President of the Republic of Singapore and between 1965 and 1970 headed the nation during its tumultuous early history. His widow, Puan Noor Aishah Bte Md Salim donated an valuable collection of photographs belonging to the late President to the National Archives of Singapore in 2008

Personal records of war and Occupation

Mar 1, 2016
Personal records of war and Occupation

In conjunction with the upcoming revamp of Memories at Old Ford Factory, which houses an exhibition gallery examining life under the Japanese Occupation, the National Archives of Singapore (NAS) is conducting a public call for archives. This post takes a look at a selection of our private records from the Japanese Occupation period. [T]he Japanese […]

Orchard Theatre

Feb 22, 2016
Orchard Theatre

Despite a fateful 1964 air crash in Taiwan leading to the deaths of Cathay Organisation’s chairman, its chief executive and one of its noted film directors and producers,[1] Cathay continued strong and even opened a second cinema in the heart of Orchard Road. In 1965, Cathay Organisation opened the $6 million dollar Orchard Theatre

The Ronni Pinsler Collection

Feb 1, 2016
The Ronni Pinsler Collection

Mr Ronni Pinsler is an independent photographer who has made invaluable contributions to Singapore heritage by documenting the nation’s changing landscape between the 1970s and 1990s. He is best known for his extraordinary efforts recording the multifaceted practices of local Taoism and has captured many valuable images of Singapore, focusing on vanishing local street scenes

Introducing the NAS Map Collection

Feb 1, 2016
Introducing the NAS Map Collection

This essay, originally published in ‘Visualising Space: Maps of Singapore and the Region – Collections from the National Library and National Archives of Singapore’ (National Library Board, 2014) provides an overview of the National Archives of Singapore’s map collection which is presently the largest available public  collection of Singapore maps.

Island of Stories: Singapore Maps

Feb 1, 2016
Island of Stories: Singapore Maps

Island of Stories: Singapore Maps was an exhibition jointly developed by the National Archives of Singapore and National Library Board, showcasing maps from the National Archive’s collection. The exhibition, which was part of the National Library Board’s 2015 Geo-Graphics Mapping Festival, drew on an eclectic mix of Singapore maps that captured intriguing moments from our nation’s history.