Archives départementales de l’Orne


The archives départementales were founded in 1796 to store the archives of the Ancien Régime’s authorities, of the closed-down religious establishments and of emigrated families. Since then, the collections have gradually expanded with archives from the French Revolution, documentation from the different administrative services, law courts, public and ministerial offices, along with input from towns, villages and hospitals located in the department. Donations, purchases and contributions from family and other private archives and documentation from companies and associations have also added to the collection.


  • Collection: Adding to the written heritage with new archives from public sources and from donations, deposits and purchases of private archives on all types of media; enriching the common heritage
  • Classification: Sorting, filing, withdrawals and the drafting of inventories and databases to help the public find their way around the millions of papers conserved
  • Conservation: Leaving this heritage in place for future generations, by ensuring proper storage conditions, restoring damaged documents, and micro-filming and scanning fragile and/or valuable documents
  • Promotion: Raising awareness. The archives open for use by all - genealogists, local history enthusiasts, pupils and students, citizens looking up their rights, information on administrative procedures, etc.
  • Presentation: Promoting the archived heritage through exhibitions and publications

Key facts

  • 30,000 documents communicated each year
  • 25 employees (archivists, photographer, binder, storeroom staff, maintenance staff, secretaries, general administrative staff)
  • 18km of document storage (an additional 300 metres per year)
  • 4 floors
  • 1 reading room with 25 places for the consultation of original documents and 8 places for microfilm consultation