The Swiss Federal Archives offer research tips on frequently requested topics.


The Old Swiss Confederacy

Helvetians, Switzers, Swiss and the Swiss Cross: historical sources in the Swiss Federal Archives dating from the time prior to the centralised state of 1798.
2.0 Staatsgeschichte Bild Einstiegseite

Modern Switzerland

The creation of the modern Swiss political system can be researched on the basis of historical sources in the Swiss Federal Archives.
4.0 Migration Bild Einstiegsseite

Emigrants and immigrants

At the end of the 19th century, Switzerland changed from a land of emigrants to one of immigrants. Historical sources at the Swiss Federal Archives help discover traces.
5.0 Aussenpolitik Bild Einstiegsseite

Foreign policy since 1848

Historical sources on Swiss foreign policy (representation of interests, relationship management and humanitarian involvement) in the Swiss Federal Archives.
7.0 Erster Weltkrieg Bild Einstiegsseite

The First World War

From a military viewpoint, Switzerland was prepared for the First World War. However, the ensuing economic and social crisis brought with them many challenges for the state.
8.0 Bild Zweiter Weltkrieg Einstiegsseite

Second World War

The history of Switzerland during the Second World War is to this day the subject of research and debates. Historical sources in the Swiss Federal Archives.
13.0 Heimatlose und Fahrende Bild Einstiegsseite

Homeless and travellers in Switzerland

Historical sources in the Swiss Federal Archives on the problematic handling of a transient population by the state and society.
14.0 Bild FSZM Einstiegsseite

Enforced welfare measures

Forced adoptions, indentured child labourers, children in homes and travellers count among the victims of enforced welfare measures. Documents held by municipalities, cantons and the Confederation.
9.0 Geheimdienste Bild Einstiegsseite

Intelligence services, spies, traitors to the nation and state security

Historical sources in the Swiss Federal Archives document the development of the intelligence services and state security as well as the "Secret Files Scandal".
6.0 Militärgeschichte Bild Einstiegsseite

The history of the Swiss Army

From lansquenets and mercenaries to the modern militia army: the Swiss Federal Archives hold many sources relating to military history.
10.0 Wirtschaftsgeschichte Bild Einstiegsseite

The Swiss economy between market and state

Switzerland has a liberal economic constitution. Historical sources document the state's activities relating to its economic policy.
11.0 Verkehrsgeschichte Bild Einstiegsseite

History of transport in Switzerland

Historical sources at the Swiss Federal Archives on the development of shipping, railways, mountain railways and aviation. Overview and introduction.
3.0 Bild Rechtsgeschichte Einstiegsseite

Legal texts, certificates and treaties

Tips and notes relating to searches for official documents from the middle ages to the present day in the Swiss Federal Archives and other institutions.
12 Fotos 00 Documents audiovisuels

Photos, plans, film and sound recordings held by the Federal Archives

The fonds held by the Federal Archives include numerous audio-visual records such as photos, films, plans and sound recordings alongside paper-based documents.

Women’s suffrage in Switzerland

The fonds of the Swiss Federal Archives offer an insight into the eventful history of women’s suffrage.

Last modification 19.11.2019

Top of page