Military-historical documentation

Are you looking for military-historical documentation? The Netherlands Institute of Military History (NIMH) manages over 2.500 metres of documentation material. 

Subjects covered by the documentation collection

In the documentation collection of the NIMH, you will find a wealth of documents mainly on the Second World War and the decolonisation struggle in the Netherlands East Indies. For example:

  • combat reports on the German invasion of the Netherlands in 1940 and the Royal Netherlands East Indies Army’s fight against Japan;
  • the German plans of attack for the Netherlands (including the Von Sponeck documents);
  • topographic and intelligence maps used by the resistance movement during the Second World War;
  • the London Merchant Navy Collection, consisting of detailed memorandums and service records of 30.000 Dutch and foreign seamen who risked their lives on Dutch merchant ships for the Allied cause between 1940 and 1945;
  • files on aeroplane crashes in the 1940-1945 period;
  • combat reports on the military deployments to the Netherlands East Indies (1945-1950) and Netherlands New Guinea;
  • documentation on the deployment of navy vessels and marines during the Second World War.

Searching the documentation collection

You can also search the documentation collections of the NIMH via the website

Making an appointment for a visit to consult documentation

Do you wish to consult our documentation at the Frederik Barracks in The Hague? Please complete and send us the NIMH contact form, or make an appointment by telephone on +31(0)70 316 28 47. Allow at least 5 working days after submitting the titles of the publications you wish to consult. In return for a fee, it is usually possible to make photocopies.

Information for visitors to the NIMH

The NIMH reading room is located at the Frederik Barracks in The Hague. The reading room is open Tuesday to Friday from 8.15 to 16.45 hrs. Visitors must show identification to gain access to the Frederik Barracks. 

Limited access to collections

A large part of the collections of the NIMH is entirely open to the public. Access to some documents or items is subject to conditions in order to protect the privacy of living persons. In such cases, the NIMH will ask you to sign an 'archive statement' or to ask the director for written permission. The inventory of a collection will contain information indicating whether access is subject to conditions.

Donating documentation

Do you have military historical material such as letters, diaries or unit journals or other personal documentation from your or one of your relatives’ military service, and are you looking for a suitable destination for them? Please complete and send us the contact form. Do not forget to include a brief description of the material and your contact details. The NIMH will contact you as soon as possible.