Introduction to the Matthew Cowley Pacific Church History Centre


Museum - Monday and Sunday:  Closed (except by appointment)
Museum - Tuesday to Saturday:  10am – 4pm
Office – Tuesday to Friday:  9am – 4.30pm

Location and Parking

The centre is located in the Wendell B. Mendenhall Building at 465 Tuhikaramea Road, Temple View, New Zealand. The Mendenhall Building is approximately 500 meters northeast of the Hamilton New Zealand Temple. Limited public parking is available in front of the building with overflow parking in nearby Church facilities on Tuhikaramea Road and Fosters Road.

Our Facility

The Matthew Cowley Pacific Church History Centre was dedicated in 2017 by President Henry B. Eyring. The centre operates under the direction of the Pacific Area Presidency and functions as a branch of the Church History Department’s library and museum in Salt Lake City, Utah, USA. The centre includes the Pacific Church History Library, with its environmentally controlled archival storage room, public reading room, and 400 square-meter Pacific Church History Museum. Admission to the library and museum is free to the public.

Our Purpose

The Matthew Cowley Pacific Church History Centre was established to help the Church History Department fulfill its scriptural mandate to preserve records of historical significance for future generations (see D&C 21:1; 69:3, 8; 85:1–2). This mandate is best accomplished when records are stored in a safe, secure, and environmentally controlled facility. Since the organisation of the Church, records have been gathered to Church headquarters for safekeeping. However, to better meet the needs of the worldwide Church, records are now also stored at authorised records preservation centres and Church history centres around the world. The Matthew Cowley Pacific Church History Centre was the first Church history centre established away from Church headquarters. Click here for more information about the Church History Department’s records preservation program.

Our Staff

Our centre is staffed by missionaries and volunteers who are prepared to assist visitors to our library and museum. Library staff is trained to help everyone—from family historians to professional researchers—find records that help Church history come alive. Email the staff about your research interests before you arrive to help them prepare for your visit.

Museum guides can assist you with the interactive displays, provide more detail about the stories in the museum, and suggest avenues of personal research. They can also arrange for you to view one of the many Church videos shown in our 80-seat auditorium. We also welcome opportunities to talk to groups outside the museum.