Explore with us

Explore the maritime history of Aotearoa New Zealand through our collection of archives, books and magazines at the Bill Laxon Maritime Library.

The library collection covers areas of navigation, vessels, commercial shipping, migration, yachting, maritime crafts and port and harbour history, including the Auckland Harbour Board archives.


Library FAQs

  • Phone (09) 373 0810
  • Email danielle@maritimemuseum.co.nz
  • Opening hours: Thursdays, 10am - 4pm (by appointment)

An entry fee of $10.00 is payable at the Museum's front of house for all research visits. If you would like to access the library's collections for research, you can visit the library on Thursday 10am-4pm, or by appointment Monday - Wednesday.

Making a Research Request 
The librarian may be able to assist with simple research enquiries, but is currently unable to help with any detailed research. Please get in touch via our contact form, selecting 'Library' as your related enquiry. 

Please allow up to three working days for an initial response. Research fees may apply after the initial 15 mins of library staff support.

  • Per page (A4/A3 b&w)  20 cents
  • Per page (A4/A3 colour)  40 cents 
  • Image scans for research purposes  $5.00 per image
  • Half hour charge for library staff copying /scanning of multiple documents $30.00
  • Digital printout on high-resolution paper (A4)  $5.00 per image
  • Digital printout on photo paper (A4 b&w)  $20.00 per image
  • Digital printout on photo paper (A4 colour)  $25.00 per image

If you would like to reproduce material from the Bill Laxon Library, where the Museum does not hold the copyright, it is your responsibility to seek permission from the copyright holder. The library charges the following reproduction costs in addition to production costs.

  • For non-profit organisations, academic publications or small-scale publications not for sale (e.g. family history publication for family only)    $5.00 per image                 
  • For use in a public/private commercial building on display  $10.00 per image
  • For use in a book or serial offered for sale  $20.00 per image
  • For use in a video, DVD, TV programme or film $30.00 per image

The Bill Laxon Maritime Library will contact you if there are likely to be additional fees for research copying or image reproduction.

While the library does not hold passenger or crew lists, additional resources in the collection may include:

  • Photographs of some passenger ships
  • Selected ephemera such as deck plans, accommodation plans or menus
  • A small number of shipboard diaries and logs

Other useful resources

The Bill Laxon Maritime Library is a reference only library and no items are available for loan. Prints, copies and scans can be made for a small fee where copyright alows.

Our library is located inside the New Zealand Maritime Museum on Level 2.

Take the lift to the second level and turn left. 

Bill Laxon 

Bill Laxon was a founding member of the Auckland Maritime Society that developed the proposal for the New Zealand Maritime Museum. The Bill Laxon Maritime Library houses his extensive archives including his collection of over 200,000 index cards featuring images and key facts about a range of vessels.

View online selection



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