Archives introduce themselves - The Bavarian Main State Archives

By Archivportal-D

In the section "Archives introduce themselves" we present the various data providers of Archivportal-D and link to their holdings. We are happy that the archive of the Bavarian Main State Archives are participating!

The Bavarian Main State Archives in Munich are the central archives of the Free State of Bavaria. With its establishment in 1921, the old Bavarian archives, some of which date back to the Middle Ages, were brought together under one roof. The records kept here date back to 794 and represent more than twelve hundred years of Bavarian history. The oldest surviving repertory comes from the Duchy of Bavaria-Munich and dates from 1438.

Archive building of the Bavarian Main State Archives

Archive building of the Bavarian Main State Archives

The total holdings of 3.8 million archival records include deeds, official books, files and hand-drawn maps, extensive photo and poster collections, audio and video material, and digital records. With more than 300,000 documents, the Bayerisches Hauptstaatsarchiv is one of the largest document archives in the world.

The records of the ducal and electoral central authorities of Bavaria and the Palatinate are kept here, as are the archives of the monasteries and high abbeys of Old Bavaria, which were secularized in 1802/03, the imperial city of Regensburg, and smaller sovereignties that were independent of the empire (Dept. I). The holdings of the Bavarian state ministries and other state authorities and courts responsible for the whole of Bavaria are continually growing through the acquisition of further documents (Dept. II).

The Geheime Hausarchiv (Dept. III) holds the records of the House of Wittelsbach in the possession of the WAF and occupies a special legal position.

Archival records of the former Bavarian army (17th century to 1919), including the Court War Council, the War Ministry, older troop files up to 1914, and the command authorities and troops of World War I, make up the holdings of the Kriegsarchiv (Dept. IV). Because of the wide-ranging activities of the army, there is a wealth of material here for research into military and personal history as well as local and regional history. Questions from social and economic history (e.g. armaments factories), the history of everyday life and mentality (e.g. women's work in the First World War), the history of technology (especially military technology) and the history of construction and architecture (especially military buildings) can be dealt with here.

Non-governmental records such as the estates of politicians (e.g. Montgelas, von der Pfordten or Hans Ehard), family archives (e.g. Dukes of Leuchtenberg, Barons of Aretin), association records and archival collections (posters, flyers, printed matter) complement the classic official records (Department V). These holdings are continuously supplemented by active collecting activities.

Holding's overview of the Bavarian Main State Archives in the Archivportal-D


Logo des Bayerischen Hauptstaatsarchivs


Postfach 221152

80501, München
Tel.: 089/28638-2596
Fax: 089/28638-2954
E-Mail: poststelle [at]

Additional information as well as online finding aids and further links can be found on the homepage of the State Archives of Bavaria: