Archives départementales de l'Aisne

  • Departmental Archives of Aisne


Parc Foch
Avenue du Maréchal Foch


+33 (0)3 23 24 61 47


+33 (0)323246126


In 1947, the Departmental Archives were placed under the control of Joseph Etienne, Chief Archivist of the Somme. A barrack was built, not far from the teachers' training college. The documents were summarily stored there. In 1950, Jean Quéguiner became chief archivist of the Aisne. He was the first archivist to reside in Laon since 1941, which had an impact on the conservation of the collections. His constant concern was the dilapidated state of the temporary premises where the archives were stored. In his first report, he wrote: "I would like to draw your attention to the urgent need to undertake the construction of a new repository, as the cramped and damp conditions of the current barracks are detrimental to the proper conservation of the department's archives. Shortly afterwards, he emphasised the resumption of normal activities of receiving deposits and filing, a resumption that was nevertheless difficult because of the dispersal of the buildings, but also because of their "insalubrity, which compromises the good conservation of the archives, which are gradually rotting". In 1950, the Aisne departmental archives only held 1,500 linear metres of documents.

The department was then transferred in 1954 to a new building, very modern for its time. It was equipped with 8,000 linear metres of shelving. This transfer and Jean Quéguiner's activity enabled the department to quickly resume its activities: numerous deposits and, consequently, processing work. In 1956, the Departmental Archives already held 6,100 linear metres of documents. It was during this period that documents from the prefecture and sub-prefectures of the Aisne began to arrive at the Departmental Archives. Very quickly, the new building was saturated.

However, it was not until 1977 that the Archives moved to a new building in the lower town. It has a surface area of 6,000 m² and a total storage capacity of 21 linear kilometres.

At the end of the 2000s, the storage areas were rearranged and the regulatory eliminations did not leave enough space to accommodate future deposits. Therefore, an annex was put into service with a storage capacity of 3 linear kilometres. At the beginning of 2017, these two entities were on the verge of saturation.

Alerted very early on, the Aisne Departmental Council decided to build a new storage facility in the Foch Park area. At the end of 2015, the work was entrusted to the Rabot-Dutilleul group. Construction began at the end of the first quarter of 2017 for delivery in June 2018.


The new building offers a storage capacity of 40 linear kilometres, a modern reading room with 37 seats, an exhibition room of 150 m² and 5 training rooms including a conference room that can accommodate 80 to 120 people. In the long term, the building can be extended by 60 linear kilometres.

Archival and Other Holdings

The Aisne Departmental Archives make nearly 25 linear kilometres of documents available to the public; these illustrate the life of the Aisne department from the 9th century to the present day. This rich and varied archival heritage is the result of a long history.

Finding Aids, Guides, and Publication

Inventories and thematic guides

Opening Times

The Aisne Departmental Archives are open to the public from Monday to Friday from 9 am to 5 pm.

Conditions of Access

Registration is free and valid for the current calendar year. It should be done with the reception staff on the ground floor of the Aisne Archives and Library Centre. After filling in an information form and presenting a valid identity document, you will be given a personal reader's card. It is compulsory to request and consult any document.

Registration implies acceptance of the reading room rules, which define the terms and conditions for the reception of the public and the communication of documents.

To protect the original documents from damage or theft, readers are required to deposit in lockers (lockable and available free of charge near the reading room) all their belongings and personal effects (coats, jackets, bags, pencil cases, files, etc.); food and drink. The following are allowed in the reading room: loose-leaf and transparent pockets, pencils, laptops without their covers and cameras.

Reproduction Services

The use of a laptop and/or a camera without flash is allowed. Scanners are not allowed.

Reproduction is only possible when it does not harm the conservation of the document. The proposed rates are inclusive of all charges (including VAT) and exclusive of postage and packing, as set out in the attached price list.

The following exemptions are applicable:

  • exemption from all reproduction costs for depositors and donors for their holdings, up to a limit of 100 views per month;
  • free of charge up to 10 views for reproductions requested by legal entities in the framework of an educational, scientific or cultural project that is non-commercial and not for profit;
  • free reproductions for administrative and legal purposes when requested in the reading room by private individuals who do not have their own reproduction facilities.


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