Utah Department of Administrative Services

Division of Archives & Records Service

Mission and Services


To serve the record needs of government and its citizens.


The purpose of the State Archives is to assist Utah government agencies in the efficient management of their records, to preserve those records of enduring value, and to provide quality access to public information.

History of the Archives

The Utah State Archives permanently preserves and provides access to the records of enduring value created by Utah state, county, and municipal governments and other local government entities.

Archival activities in Utah began in 1917 when the State Legislature appointed the State Historical Society custodian of "all records, documents, relics, and other material of historic value." The Society was also to provide public access to public documents.

In 1969, the Archives and Historical Society were separated. The Utah State Archives now functions as part of the Department of Administrative Services. A more in-depth history has been written by Jeffery O. Johnson, former State Archivist.


The Archives serves two communities: those who create and maintain records in state or local government, and the general public.

State Agencies and Local Governments

We act as a consultant for state agencies and local governments when records management questions arise. We provide expertise in retention schedules, the Government Records Access and Management Act, reformating records for preservation purposes (microfilming), information about the care of historical records, disaster preparedness, imaging systems, and related material.

  • Review of records to appraise permanent value and evaluate how long non-permanent records should be retained
  • Records officer training 
  • Storage of non-permanent records 
  • Microfilming or training to microfilm; film duplication and storage
  • Information, advice, and training to preserve permanent records
  • Glossary of archival terms 

The Public

We make records and information available through our Research Center. We assist those needing access to Utah state and local government records for historical, genealogical, legal research, or other reasons as well as those needing copies of personal documents such as divorce records and military discharges.


Records date from 1851, the year Utah became a territory, to the present. The majority of records are state government documents produced in the 20th century. To see descriptions of these records, go to our catalog.

Agency Histories

In addition to identifying government records created in Utah, the Archives also keeps track of the governmental entities which created those records, including their organizational history and individuals who served in office. Agency histories are available through our catalog.