Archive Reference & Research

Reference & Research

We answer questions about the records and requests for specific information from the records that involve only a reasonable amount of research. We will check a few specified, easily searched indexes for a name. Extensive research or issues involving questions of judgment cannot be undertaken, but recommendations will be made for further research.

The Tuolumne County Genealogical Society will provide research services for a nominal fee.

Document Relocation

We have moved the county’s historic records from the Superior Court, Tuolumne County Museum, Columbia Armory, and Administration Center to the archive. There have been some occasions where county departments and private parties have returned records that were misplaced from prior years.

Public Access

With the assistance of the archive volunteers, we have been able to enter over 35,000 records into the archives database. All of the county’s bound volume collection has been assigned a unique inventory number and entered into the database. The archives currently have six computers that have been networked, which allow us to use each terminal for data entry and also allow public access to this historical data.

View the Archives Brochure (PDF) to learn more.

Record Restoration

A new budget category was created in 2002, solely for the purpose of record restoration. This gave the county a good start in restoring a portion of its collection by helping determine which records need to be restored in terms of preserving Tuolumne County’s memory.

The archive has been doing some small-scale restoration work. This work has been done locally and we are pleased with the results, but there is larger scale restoration work that needs to be done. This restoration cannot be done locally. There is a great deal of this type restoration work to be completed. This work consists of numerous assessment rolls, plat books, and general county ledger books that are water damaged, mishandled, or were subjected to heavy use.

Restoration Resources

The archive currently has 14 volunteers who have logged in hundreds of hours. We also have had volunteers from the USFS Partners in Time program. We also have made use of Tuolumne County jail inmates. We are currently working with the Human Resource Department to place recovering injured county workers on a light duty status to work at the archives. We are always looking to expand the number of volunteers who work at the archives.


Researchers must remain in the research room. All records will be brought out from the main archive area, which is accessible only to authorized staff members. No documents, microfilm, volumes, or books may be taken from the research room. Theft or mutilation of records is a crime (Penal Code Section 490.5).

Cameras, computers, scanners, tape recorders, and other equipment may be used with the permission of staff. Personal belongings (coats, jackets, umbrellas, purses, briefcases, computer cases / covers, folders, etc.) must be placed in lockers or coat closet located in the research room reception area. Only paper and pencils are permitted at research tables.

Download the form if you would like to register before your visit and review the research room procedures.

Photocopy Services

Photocopy services are not available at the present time. We will allow the use of digital cameras.


Current records in the archive include records from:

  • Assessment
  • Auditor
  • Board of Supervisors
  • Clerk
  • Great Registers
  • Justice Court
  • Naturalization
  • Oral History
  • Probate
  • School Districts
  • Sheriff / Coroner / Jail
  • Superior / District Court
  • Treasurer
  • Tuolumne County Newspapers