Research in Our Archive

Timespan’s archive holds sources of interest to researchers in social history, estate management, and maritime history, amongst others.  

The archive holds around 1,200 original historical photographs and documents, 11,000 digital copies of photographs held by community members, and oral histories in audio and audio-visual formats.  In addition, we hold copies of census records, parish registers, and rentals, and secondary literature on a number of key themes:  the Kildonan Clearances 1813-15, the Kildonan Gold Rush 1869, sea fishing and river fishing being the most prominent.  This gives us wide-ranging coverage of all aspects of life in Helmsdale, Kildonan and Loth over the last 200 years.

We are currently in the process of cataloguing our archive, and anticipate that the catalogue will be complete by spring 2018.  Items catalogued to date can be viewed on a catalogue within our building.  In the meantime, please contact us if you are searching for something specific.  To find out more about our exciting plans for further development of the collection, please visit our development page.

We want to encourage people to come and work with our archive, in part so that we can better understand our holdings and our heritage.  If your research touches on our history, please do contact us.

Our archive is open for self guided access during Timespan’s opening hours.  You can also make an appointment to see our archivist, or send us your queries, by emailing: