Archivio storico di Modena (Historical archives of Modena)

Archivio storico di Modena (Historical archives of Modena)

This facility receives documents from the city administration after they have been kept on file in the Depository Archive for the 40 years required by law. The archive also has a library containing approximately 5000 specialised volumes and sets of works including both printed works and hand-written manuscripts, for the most part regarding local history.

The functions of the Historic Archives are to

  • safeguard, preserve and restore, reorder and inventory documents
  • assist and aid researchers, city offices and others in searching through the documents
  • didactic and promotional activities: cooperation with the schools and participation in exhibitions and publications on various aspects of the city's history.

Material preserved

  • manuscripts considered of particular value: cartulary documents and Community statues; statutes of craft guilds; literary and storiographical manuscripts
  • records of acts and decisions made by the City representative assemblies
  • general administrative acts
  • sets of instruments and contracts
  • sets of documents regarding the waters and public works
  • sets of documents regarding citizenship, the general population, civil status and register of births and deaths
  • sets of documents regarding ornamentation and cleanliness
  • sets of documents regarding public health
  • sets of acts and records regarding the National Guard
  • sets of acts and records regarding Wheat, Abundance, Food Office and the Santo Monte della Farina
  • material on Pious, Aid and Charity works
  • acts of the Housing Magistrate
  • acts regarding the Community and the City created during the Napoleonic years and suppressed under the Austro-Estense dominion
  • acts of the Management of Performances, the Philharmonic Society, the Cuore ed Arte Society and other organisations
  • decrees and publications
  • donations and endowments.

The archive has a card catalogue, which was prepared in several stages over the last hundred years and containing more than 40,000 cars. This catalogue proves quite useful in research although, having been produced in stages, it was not prepared in a fully scientific manner. The cards are catalogued as "contracts", general research, history and chronicles of city life drawn from newspapers, etc. It also has the cards for the library ordered by author.

Opening hours

The archive opens from Monday to Friday: 9.00 am - 1.00 pm, on request. To book it's necessary to send an email to

Tickets and admission

Free entrance.