Service historique de la défense, Centre historique des archives

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Service historique de la défense
Château de Vincennes
Avenue de Paris
94306 Vincennes cedex



+33 1 41 93 20 95 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting              +33 1 41 93 20 95      end_of_the_skype_highlighting


+33 1 41 93 20 03


Schedule & hours

Monday through Thrusday 9am-5pm Check the website for the most up-to-date information on closures.

Working language(s)


(description of reading rooms, store rooms, etc)


The archives is located within the castle of Vincennes at the end of Metro Line 1 (Station: Château de Vincennes). The archive's website provides a wonderful map of the castle and to the archives.


French military archives.

Description of holdings

Please see the official website which has a useful and categorized description of all of its holdings.

History of the archive

(previous location(s) of collection held there, and any information that might help researchers to navigate previous systems)

Catalogues & finding aids

This website provides a useful starting place of for any researcher looking to visit the archives. entry

Languages of materials

Restrictions & difficulties

Classified material

Inaccessible material

Future of the archive

(what direction is the archive going? what rumours have you heard?)

Research procedures


(what permits, identity documents, or letters of reference do you need to present? how far in advance must you begin to register?)

First visit

(what happens when you first come to the archives?)

Permitted and prohibited items

  • Permitted:

Laptop computers allowed and plugs available at all seats. Cameras allowed.

  • Prohibited:

Pens, biros etc. (pencils only)

Document ordering

(how do you request documents? how many can you order at a time?)

Ordering classified material

(what special permission is necessary?)

Document delivery

(how long does it take for documents to arrive? where are they delivered? how many can you consult at a time? what do you do when you are finished with an item?)

Photocopying, photography, microfilming

(what are costs, permits, and page limits? how long do you have to wait?)

Key forms

(what are the main forms that the archive uses? if possible, provide links to copies or post copies directly)

Key individuals

Archive staff

(people you've found particularly helpful; no invective)


(scholars who are familiar with this archive)


(published works based on research at this archive)



There is a vending machine and a coffee machine on the ground floor. No real food on site, best to bring a picknick (there is seating room where you can eat it)


Compulsory, 1 euro coin needed to operate them.



Metro line 1 stops just outside at 'Chateau de Vincennes'. RER A to Vincennes is another possibility - a short walk to the Chateau (but beware: standard metro tickets are not sufficient, as Vincennes is outside Paris proper).

Internet access

There are computers with internet access in the catalogue room. No wifi.



See also

(links to relevant websites and resources)

Personal tools