The Mandela Archive is fragmented and scattered all over the world in various places. The Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory does not seek to gather all of this under its roof. Instead the focus is to document where it is and to enter into partnerships to ensure that is preserved and accessible. However a small amount has been collected since the establishment of the Centre of Memory in 2004 and these have been categorised into the following archive groups, and special collections: 

Archive groups

  • Records from the Office of Nelson Mandela (his office at the NMF) 
  • Nelson Mandela’s personal archives 
  • Records of organisations and individuals related to the life and times of Nelson Mandela 
  • Records of the Nelson Mandela Foundation 
  • 46664 records - these are mainly the recordings of the various concerts and some organisational records 
  • Nelson Mandela Gifts Collection – gifts received by Mandela mainly from 1999 onwards 
  • Nelson Mandela Awards Collections – awards received by Mandela mainly after 1999 

Special collections 

  • From the archive groups above and through specific donations, these special collections have been created:
  • The photograph collection
  • The audio/video collection
  • The poster collection
  • The reference collection, which consists of the following sub-collections: Anthony Sampson, foreign language books, autograph book, reference book, audio-visual autograph, audio-visual reference and audio-visual tribute

As these records and collections are organised and processed the finding aids to them will be made available. This is a work in progress and we would like to hear from you if you have additional information to support our collections work.