Kenya National Archives Nairobi

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The Kenya National Archives has a collection of documents, photographs and other records that offer an insight into Kenya’s past and present.

Treasure Trove in the City

The Kenya National Archives sits on the downtown area of Nairobi with its door facing Moi Avenue and Tom Mboya Street at its rear. This gigantic building, which was formerly a banking hall, neighbours other large buildings across the road such as the Hilton Hotel, Kencom and Ambassadeur Hotel.

The Kenya National Archives and documentation service was established in 1965. Later, in 1989, a National Documentation and Information Retrieval Service were also added in order to handle government publications.  The services offered are records management, microfilming, conservation, national documentation and archives administration. Hence, the archives houses three sections that are the library and documentation, archives administration and records management.

Archives administration preserves publications and documents in a variety of forms such as in tapes and film reels. The library is also open to the public at a nominal fee. Through the years, projects to digitise the documents housed in this archive have seen over 10 million documents turned into soft copy that will be availed to the public for use within the premise.

The ground floor of the Kenya National Archives building houses the Murumbi Trust exhibition.  This collection of artefacts is named after Joseph Murumbi, who was Kenya’s second vice president. He sold his collection to the government and walking through this gallery, you will see why the artefacts received worldwide attention. There are traditional tools, books, weapons, crafts from various countries in Africa such as Congo, Ethiopia and Mali.

The first floor  of the Kenya National Archives exhibits Kenya’s journey from the colonial era, the one party state, the democracy to the present state of the nation through photographs.  The Kenya National Archives is open from 8 to 5pm. Enjoy the journey back in time.

Map of Kenya National Archives Nairobi

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