The Kaiapoi District Historical Society was formed in 1960 and is responsible for preserving records and artefacts of Kaiapoi and the surrounding area, in the Kaiapoi Museum.
Rooms in the old fire station in Williams Street (now demolished) were first used to store and show items.
About 1970 the Society reported on the lack of any firm proposals about the future of the former courthouse which had ceased hearings in 1951. Both the Historic Places Trust and the Kaiapoi Borough Council gave their wholehearted support for the building to be used as a museum. In 1971 the Council purchased the building, but it was not until 1982 that the Society moved in. The courthouse building suffered significant damage in the September 2010 earthquake and was demolished on 10 September 2010. The Kaiapoi Museum collection now has a new home in the Ruataniwha Kaiapoi Civic Centre.
The committee of the Society evaluates items donated for it to hold, however they have to be selective and concentrate on items relating to the Kaiapoi River, port, woollen mill and other Kaiapoi industries. Family, church, clubs and societies and some school records and photographs are also held.