The Bowes Museum > Collection > Library & Archive > Search the Database

Search the Database

If you would like to search the Museum Collection, Library and/or Archive databases click here.

To help you find what you are looking for, please see the notes below:

Notes for searchers

Simple search

This allows you to search all three databases (Museum objects, library and archive) for a single word that appears in the title [or description].

Advanced search

You can search only one database at a time using the Advanced Search facility.  Make sure you use the drop-down list to select the appropriate database.  However, you can search in a number of fields that are not searched using the Simple Search.

Expert Search

You can search only one database at a time using the Expert Search facility.  Make sure you use the drop-down list to select the appropriate database.   However, you can use the drop-down lists to select the field(s) to be searched.  If you want to use more than one field, click on the plus sign (+) to add additional search fields.

Using the search results for the Archives database

Click on the entry or entries you want to look at.  This will take you to the catalogue entry and also show you its place in the whole catalogue (see Hierarchy Browser below the search results).  You can click on the plus sign (+) beside any entry in the Hierarchy browser to see the related entries (at a more detailed level).

If you want to visit the Reading Room to look at any of the archives, please contact us to book a visit and order documents using the reference number. See User Resources.

If you want to request a copy of a document, please see our reprographics policy and/or contact us at and we will:

·        See whether the item can be copied

·        Advise you on possible methods and costs of copying

·        Send you the appropriate order form

Information about reopening

We are delighted the Prime Minister has announced that museums can reopen this summer. We understand you are excited at the prospect of visiting The Bowes Museum and would like to assure you we have been developing plans to welcome you back into our beautiful building by late August; we are working on vital social distancing measures so you, staff and volunteers can be confident of a safe environment which everyone can enjoy.

We take pride in offering a relaxed and enjoyable day out for all the family, and with that in mind we are extending the Museum passes we have issued in the last year. Our exceptional Norman Cornish exhibition will continue until Autumn 2020 and we are planning to release details of a packed events programme, including the Christmas Market, over the coming weeks.

In the meantime the grounds of The Bowes Museum are open to be enjoyed by walkers and cyclists, in line with the government guidance on COVID-19. The parkland can be accessed through the front pedestrian gates between 10.30-4.45 daily. We would like to thank everyone for their continued support and understanding, and ask people to respect social distancing guidelines when they visit.

You can keep up to date with developments, including our reopening date here or on our Facebook and Twitter.