Discovery FAQ

Use the search form to find collections indexed in CNDHI using general search terms or more descriptive information, such as collection title or description, keywords, or media type.

Search terms are not case or accent-sensitive: "Photography" and "photography" will produce the same result.

The FAQ below will offer a little more precision and examples of how to use the different filters in the search form. If you have any issues locating a collection or would like to get in touch with us, please contact us at


Search Box

Search Box
"Type what you are looking for here

  • Enter any combination of search terms.
  • Search terms are considered independently of another. For example, to find family or photograph collections, enter the individual terms family and photograph : family photograph
  • To specifically find family photograph collections, use  to search a phrase and enter : “family photograph

Collection Title

Collection Title
Search by title to find the collection you are looking for.

  • You do not have to know the exact collection title.
  • You may enter only one or two terms that should appear in the collection title to receive multiple results. 

Hosting Institution

Hosting Institution
Search by institution or city that hosts the collection.

  • For example, to find collections from University of Alberta, enter: University of Alberta
  • You can also search by province or city; for example: Ottawa will return University of Ottawa, City of Ottawa, and Canadian War Museum (located in Ottawa).

Collection Description

Collection Description
Search the brief description of each collection.

  • Enter search terms that should appear in the descriptions of the collections.
  • Please note that these collection descriptions may be in French or English.


Search by thematic keyword.

  • Each collection is assigned a series of keywords. Start typing in this box to see a list of suggested keywords.
  • Note that if you enter a keyword that does not exist in the index, no search results will be returned. Enter this search term into the main search box instead.

Original Language

Original language
Search by original language.

  • Select English or French.

Media Type

Media Type
Search for collections with a specific media type.

  • Select from the drop-down menu.
  • The main categories are:
    • Video
    • Audio
    • Images (including photographs)
    • Born-digital text
    • Manuscripts
    • Publications