To search some of our online resources you will need to know your library card number and your PIN/password in order to be able to view content, however many of our listed resources are free to the public, so have a hunt through to see what you can find.
Please note - the Ancestry database is for use in our libraries only.
Arts and Culture
- Aigantighe Art Gallery
Check out our local art gallery's online collection or kids can head to the ‘Learn’ section for some fun activities.
- Google Arts & Culture
Discover artworks, collections and stories from all around the world, and be sure to check out the large array of virtual tours on offer.
- National Museum of Natural History
is situated in New York and is pretty cool (this is where the Night at the Museum movies were filmed), so check out their virtual tours online – by the time you’ve finished you’ll feel like you’ve been to New York, well to their natural history museum anyway!
- South Canterbury Museum
Explore the SC Museum’s collection online, where there is a focus on the natural heritage and history of the South Canterbury region of New Zealand - land, life and people.
- The Museum of the World
A collaboration between the British Museum and the Google Arts & Culture Lab, this is an interactive experience through time, continents and cultures.
is a programming language and online community where you can code your own interactive stories, animations and games, primarily designed for ages 8 to 16 (or kids of all ages can head to code.org as well).
- A Memory Tree
Find death information fast, with
90% OF ALL NZ DEATHS listed.
A Memory Tree is NZ's largest and most comprehensive website holding death information.
If a death has been published in a leading newspaper you can locate accurate, up-to-date information about the person here. Records are updated hourly.
A Remembrance Page is created FREE for each person, so you can help build a unique 'tree of memories' for others by leaving a message or a fond memory, refreshing flowers or lighting a candle on a page today. What you do and say, does make a difference!
Search census, birth, death and marriage records from a wide range of sources. Normally only free to use in libraries, but for a limited time (during lockdown) you can now access Ancestry from home, you only need your library card number and password.
- Ancestry Online Tutorial
To learn more about how to use the Ancestry website, view this online tutorial.
- Health Navigator New Zealand
A health website which offers everyday New Zealanders a reliable and trustworthy source of health information and self-care resources quickly. Access is available to evidence-based online tools, resources, self-help programmes and support groups, along with improved accessibility and availability of health information for specific groups such as Maori and Pacific people and resources in different languages. Considered a trusted source of health information and a practical tool for both health professionals and consumers within New Zealand, it is supported by the majority of the District Health Boards (DHBs) and is independent of any drug company sponsorship, involvement, or resources. All content is checked by medical experts.
A health information website for the general public, funded by the Canterbury and South Canterbury DHBs. There is a mix of health information, including factsheets on different topics and descriptions of local health services and supports. There are also links to recommended websites for further reading and research. The information has been written and approved by Canterbury doctors, practice nurses, hospital clinicians, and other healthcare professionals. The South Canterbury DHB has also updated the information to make it specific to South Canterbury.
- Fantastic Fiction
Bibliographies for over 40,000 authors. You can search for an author by surname, or search for books and series. Follow your favourite authors for new and upcoming books.
- MYVLF (My Virtual Literary Festival)
You can create an account to join this free global virtual literary festival, connecting readers with authors without the need to spend a fortune to travel to the literary event. You can see/hear your favourite authors and ask them questions all from the comfort of your own home – (or watch recordings after the events).
- NoveList Plus
Have you ever finished a great book and wanted to find more just like it? Or wanted to help your child find just the right book to read? NoveList Plus is a helpful resource matching readers with the right books by suggesting recommended reads, 'read-alike' titles and authors, thematic book lists, book reviews and book discussion guides for book groups, hundreds of reading and book-oriented articles plus much more.
- Short-Edition Short Stories
Children's stories or three, five-minute or classic short stories are available to read free of charge with no need to sign in. Short Édition offers free access to short literature: poetry, short stories, and flash fiction. Many of these short stories also feature on the Timaru District Libraries' Short Story Dispenser - have you seen it yet?
- Internet Archive - Music
The Internet Archive along with the Boston Public Library are digitising and preserving over 100,000 audio recordings from the Boston Library’s sound collection. While this is a work in progress, you can already listen to over 750 full albums now.
Within this assemblage are recordings in formats like wax cylinders, 78 RPMs, and LPs—although, at the moment, the project is focusing on the LPs.
LPs were our primary musical medium for over a generation. From Elvis, to the Beatles, to the Clash, the LP was witness to the birth of both Rock & Roll and Punk Rock which must be preserved for future generations.
Start listening now.
- National Library of New Zealand
Search this database to find out what items are held in our National Library. Most of these items will be available to borrow on Inter-Library loan. You will find Index New Zealand here too, where you can search for articles on a specific subject from NZ magazines and newspapers. It will give you the article title, author, name of magazine or newspaper, date, issue and a brief abstract. It is not full-text. Most articles will be available on Inter-Library loan.
- Te Puna Search - New Zealand National Bibliography
You can use the Te Puna Database to search for items by author, title or keywords. This database will tell you whether a particular item is held in a New Zealand library. Most of these items will be available to borrow on Inter-Library loan.
PressReader allows you same-day access to more than 5000 newspapers and magazines from New Zealand and around the world. Browse full-page replicas in their traditional format and layout, including complete editorial content, graphics and advertising. New Zealand newspapers include The Otago Daily Times and The New Zealand Herald, and many smaller, regional publications. Stuff publications can now only be viewed within the libraries’ WiFi hotspot areas or on computers available at each of our library branches.
- PressReader Online Tutorial
To learn more about how to use the PressReader website, view this online tutorial.
- Australia/New Zealand Reference Centre
Combines Australasian magazines, newspapers, newswires and reference books to create the largest collection of regional full text content available to libraries in Oceania. This database includes leading Australia/NZ periodicals and international periodicals in full text; full text reference books; over 80,000 full text biographies and an Image Collection of over 510,000 photos, maps and flags.
- Kareao - the Ngāi Tahu Archive
An archive database for Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu providing access to the tribal archive, including manuscripts, photographs, maps, biographies, oral histories, taonga and audio-visual material. Several thousand records have been released and work will continue over time to continue to make more available to the public.
- Kā Huru Manu
Kā Huru Manu is a Ngāi Tahu Atlas of over 1,000 Māori place names, kā ara tawhito (traditional travel routes), and original Māori land allocations in the Ngāi Tahu takiwā (region).
You can search any New Zealand postal address, Ngāi Tahu place name, land allocation or delve into the inter-generational network of traditional Māori travel routes. You can read about those members of the Ngāi Tahu whānau who shared their knowledge to help create this Atlas.
- Te Ara - The Encyclopedia of New Zealand
In Māori, Te Ara means 'the pathway'. Through interlinking text and image trails, the Encyclopedia takes you on a journey of discovery of New Zealand.
It contains snapshots of the nation, including history, natural environment, government and culture.
- Find New Zealand Articles
Search indexes to a range of New Zealand newspapers and journals. It is not full-text. Most articles will be available on Inter-Library loan.
Your online librarian can link you with the right resources to help you find the answers you need for your school work. Homework help available from 1.00 pm to 6.00 pm weekdays, February to November.
- All Tutorials
Access Timaru District Libraries’ Online Tutorials for easy-to-follow instructions on how to use a range of our online resources, including Ancestry, BorrowBox, Libby, ePlatform, Kanopy and PressReader. You will also find introductory tutorials on using some popular social media networks, setting up an email account, using Google Photos and much more.
AncestryLibrary is a genealogy database that covers billions of records from census data to directories, and photos to family trees. AncestryLibrary is only available when inside the library and cannot be accessed from home.
- BorrowBox Tutorial
BorrowBox is an eBook and eAudiobook service provided by your library that makes it easy to browse, preview, reserve, and download titles on your electronic devices.
- Kanopy Tutorial
Kanopy is a streaming service with access to thousands of films, documentaries, and television shows. It includes selections from the Criterion Collection, the Great Courses, film festival winners, independent directors, and much more.
- Overdrive Tutorial
OverDrive offers you two ways to download your library loans: OverDrive and Libby. OverDrive connects you to the library’s digital collection in a web browser or Kindle device.
- PressReader Tutorial
PressReader is an app that connects you to digital newspapers, magazines, and other periodicals.
- Wheelers ePlatform Tutorial
Wheelers ePlatform provides an entire world of books in just a few clicks.