About the College Archives

We strive to be the caretaker of the College's collective memory

In May 2016, a group of St. Johnians launched the "Retracing St. John's Project" with the ambitious aim of establishing a permanent archives at St. John's College, so that we can properly preserve our valuable historical records and to ensure their accessibility for future generations of St. Johnians. Previously, due to the lack of a persistent and comprehensive archival programme, records were scattered across the College campus or among St. Johnians, typically kept in poor conditions and unsafe premises.

With the full support of the College management, the College Archives grew and continues to grow. It now holds a wide range of materials that document the College's historical development, including student publications, photographs, video tapes, pennants, clothes, etc. Along the way, we are also fortunate to have the support and guidance of Dr. Tai Chung Pui (SJC 1F 1998-2002), Ms. Sarah Tam (Director, Hong Kong Archives Society) and members of the Ricci Hall Archives Conservation and Acquisition Project, HKU.

Archival materials contain important information that informs an institution's present and inspires its future. We are therefore conscious of the need to make our collections accessible to St. Johnians so as to unlock their value. St. John's Legacy is intended to meet this aim.

Aside from caring for our archival collections, we are also committed to the study and documentation of the College's history through historical research and oral history interviews.


  1. To collect and preserve the College's documentary heritage and facilitate access to it

  2. To promote the study of the College’s history through the use of archival resources, historical research and oral history interviews

  3. To raise awareness of the importance of preserving our valuable historical records


The College Archives is governed by the College Archives Subcommittee under the Campus Life Committee of the College Council. The main function of the Subcommittee is to advise and guide the College Archives on strategic and policy issues.

The daily administration of the College Archives is entrusted to the Executive Team, which is appointed by the College Archives Committee.

The Executive Team is assisted by a group of student helpers, who have kindly contributed their time and effort to process the archival materials in the College Archives.

The College Archives is grateful to Mr. Orion LEE (SJC 1F 2012-2015) and Mr. NEO Yi Siang (SJC 4F 2017-), webmasters of St. John's Legacy and Retracing St. John's, for their IT support.


The repository of the College Archives is now temporarily accommodated in the Vestry, 4/F, Liang Chi Hao Centre. The temperature and relative humidity are controlled at 20ºC and 50% respectively for proper preservation.

We will soon relocate to the former Students' Association Room inside the Junior Common Room. This new site—three times larger than the current room that we have—will provide sufficient space for a repository and a reading room. Construction is expected to complete by the end of 2018.

Access Policy

The College Archives is committed to facilitating as wide access as possible to our archival materials. Nevertheless, some restrictions on access are inevitable due to the needs for confidentiality of persons and institutions whose activities are reflected in the materials. For details, please review our access policy.

Facebook Page

We have been running a Facebook Page since October 2016. It serves as an outreach platform for us to share our latest news and findings, as well as to interact with St. Johnians and the public. Visit the Page and retrace the College's stories with us!

Last updated 2018-11-18