The Archives of Macao was founded as “Macao General Archives” under Ministerial Legislative Diploma No. 5 of 28 June 1952 within the Civil Administration Services of Macao. In 1979, it was renamed “Historical Archives of Macao” and began operation under the newly created Education and Culture Department. In 1986, it was transferred to the Cultural Institute of Macao (now Cultural Affairs Bureau). In 2016, it was renamed Archives of Macao.
Being the local general archives of the territory, the Archives of Macao collects, processes, preserves and protects archival resources of historical value and makes them accessible to the public. The Archives maintains custody of over 50,000 files, 70,000 images and 10,000 publications. Most records in the collection are paper-based and the earliest document dates back to 1630.
Over the years, the Archives has received considerable records from the public services as well as records donated by organizations and individuals in the community. The Archives' website provides access to full text version of records and documentation which are integrated into an online catalogue.