The archives were created when the town of Manosque was established by Guillaume de Forcalquier in 1206 – initially to ensure a legal stability for the new town in a free zone.

This remarkable historic heritage exists largely thanks to the need to establish a legal structure for the town, prompted by demands from the Hospitaliers order, the church and the local aristocracy. Today, the collections tell us about the complex relations between Manosque and the Hospitalier order of Saint-Jean of Jerusalem, the Church, and royal powers, particularly demonstrated in correspondence kept by François I, Henri II, Catherine de Médicis, Marie de Médicis, Louis XIII, and even Louis XIV. The collection also grew thanks to the addition of the former Sainte-Barbe hospital’s collection, which provides rich documentation about the social history. Our collection also counts a large number of proclamations which were displayed in the streets of the town in the past, from the Revolution to current times. Our parish and civil status registers are valuable for genealogical research. Another particularity of Manosque’s archives: all the town council’s deliberations have been conserved since 1366. In June 2014 the district and the town of Manosque chose to combine their means to ensure the sustainable preservation of this moveable heritage. This was an important evolution for the long term conservation of this heritage, with the aim to maintain it for future generations. In compliance with the heritage law, the joint department is subject to scientific and technical controls by the government authority which is represented by the official archives department.  

Archives mission

Beside collection, classification and conservation, the communication and promotion of these resources are an important activity for the department with, for example, exhibitions, visits, (schools European Heritage Days, associations, etc.) and contributions to the town’s newsletter. Another part of the joint archive department’s mission is to support the towns in the DLVA district in the management of their archives, providing them with pertinent technical assistance.  

Practical information

The historical archives are stored in the former Couvent de la Présentation, now known as the Foundation Carzou (entrance on the rue des Potiers). The offices are open to the public on Tuesday and Thursday from 1.30pm to 5.00pm.

To contact us:

Anne REGA (manager of historical and modern collections) (during opening hours) or Jérôme ROCCHI (manager of administrative archives) Find us on facebook