Accessing material from the Museum’s Archival Collection

Photographer: Jan Greshoff

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How to apply

This forms a pivotal part of the work of the Sound Archive. In addition to the core collection of oral history and field recordings, we have also generated an extensive institutional archive that looks at the various memory methodology workshops, conferences, seminars organised by or held in the Museum. Topics are diverse and range from discussions about memory work, oral history and the development of a community–based museum practice; as well as discussions around gentrification, performing identity, public history, the Palestinian solidarity movement and slavery in the city.


  • Photographic material is available for reproduction at commercial rates. Concessions are available to ex-residents and researchers, and for the non-commercial (educational) use of selected images.
  • Long term research relationships with the Museum are subject to approval by our Curatorial Committee and are also subject to conditions of access.
  • AV material and transcripts of oral history recordings are available on request.
  • Please contact Chrischené Julius at for more information.

Conditions of Access for Researches

Conditions apply to researchers who wish to use the Museum as a base for their own research project, particularly where they need to be guided through material which might be appropriate for their own use. These conditions will apply to researchers who intend to spend periods of two weeks or more at the museum


  • Archival access fee may be charged in negotiation with the researcher. This does not include costs for specific services such as reproduction, photocopying and scanning.
  • This fee entitles researchers to:
  • Free entrance to museum and programmes
  • Regular meetings with a designated supervisor / coordinator
  • Consultation with relevant staff members as appropriate, and by appointment
  • Guided access to view photographic archival material
  • Guidance through sound and video archival material, with access to view / listen to material where possible
  • Access to books, newspaper collection and academic papers as housed in the resource centre
    (All of the above are subject to museum’s own day-to-day needs.)


Researchers need to accept the conditions as outlined in the ethics statement, and agree to deposit the following with the District Six Museum’s archive, at no cost to the Museum:

  • Completed research project (textual, audio, or visual)
  • Copies of field notes made during research
  • Copies of audio recordings, in CD-R format (with appropriate release forms from respondents in the case of interviews)
  • Copies of video recordings in digital video format (with appropriate forms as above)

Research Ethics Statement

The District Six Museum Foundation was established in 1989 and launched as a museum in 1994, to keep alive the memories of District Six and displaced people everywhere. It came into being as a vehicle for advocating social justice, as a space for reflection and contemplation, and as an institution for challenging the distortions and half-truths which propped up the history of Cape Town and South Africa. As an independent space where the forgotten understandings of the past are resuscitated, where different interpretations of that past are facilitated through its collections, exhibitions and education programmes, the Museum is committed to telling stories of forced removals and assisting in the reconstitution of the community of District Six and Cape Town by drawing on a heritage of non-racialism, non-sexism, anti-class discrimination, and the encouragement of debate.

As it grows and develops, the District Six Museum remains committed to these objectives and re-dedicates itself to being a sustainable institution of reflection, contestation and social justice. So too, as the poor and the dispossessed return to the City of Cape Town as a consequence of land restitution, the Museum commits itself to deepening its memory work by supporting and facilitating the reconstruction of the landscape and community of District Six in both material and cultural terms. At the same time, the Museum commits itself to working with other bodies to achieve these objectives and to serving as a resource for independent, community-based heritage projects elsewhere in South Africa.

The District Six Museum is committed to conducting and supporting research that falls within the framework provided by its mission statement (extract above). The mission statement serves as a methodological and conceptual guide for all research undertaken under the auspices of, and in association with, the District Six Museum. This refers to all types of research, and particularly to research involving living research participants.

The Museum encourages research that serves the general interests of the community at large, and which leads to greater understanding and affirmation of the experiences of all people. Research supported by the Museum should always be characterized by:

  • Scholarly integrity;
  • Social responsibility;
  • Respect for the dignity and self-esteem of individuals;
  • Regard for human rights; and DISTRICT SIX

Specified standards of conduct:

While the Museum has no powers of approval or rejection of individual research proposals, its Curatorial and Research Committee reserves the right to withhold its support for any research projects which it considers to be in either direct or indirect violation of the above. This also applies to research projects which, in the considered view of the above committee, promotes narrowness of interpretation and fosters racial disharmony.

Terms and Conditions of Use:

  • The District Six Museum retains full copyright of all image(s) supplied by the Museum. The user is only allowed to use the image(s) for the purpose/s stated on the Request Form. The user is required to reapply for permission for any subsequent use of the image(s).
    Where the image(s) is (are) used in a publication, the user agrees to credit the District Six Museum as the source of the material, and also credit the artist, photographer, or writer (where applicable).
  • The user agrees to provide to District Six Museum with at least one copy of the publication at no cost to the Museum within one month of the publication being printed.
  • The user is not allowed to transfer any rights pertaining to the image(s) to a third party without the written consent of the District Six Museum.
  • Collection of the image(s) in the requested format implies an acceptance of the terms and conditions of use.
  • Failure to comply with the above may result in legal action against the user by the District Six Museum.