How to… Retrieve e-mails from Google Archive

How to retrieve emails from Google Archive

This is a handy guide on ‘how to retrieve emails from Google Archive’. Losing emails in Google Archive can be frustrating. If you are like me you have probably frequently sent a reply and clicked the Send+ button by mistake and “lost” the email.  The good news is, you haven’t lost it, you have just saved it to the Google Archive and can retrieve it whenever you want.

What is Google Archive?

Google’s Archive is a fantastic feature to use when cleaning up your mail box. Think of it as a less permanent ‘delete’ button for those emails that you want to keep ‘just-in-case’, but aren’t current enough to be clogging up your already overflowing folders.

That being said, when one puts something in Google Archive it can feel like it’s been lost in a maze of the internet. How do you retrieve emails from your Google Archive when things end up there – accidentally or on purpose?

This blog post will show you how to retrieve emails from Google Archive using the ‘All Mail’ method and the ‘Advanced Search Tool’ option, in addition to showing how to move archived emails back into your inbox.

The ‘All Mail’ Option

Now, your Google Archive cannot be accessed from the side panel in the same way that your ‘Junk’ or ‘Trash’ can but all is not lost! You can find emails that you have archived with the All Mail folder.

Begin with your Inbox open in the menu to the left of your emails. Then click down for More to expend your options as seen in the shot below.

retrieve emails from Google Archive

Once you select the All Mail option, all the mail in your Gmail system will show up, allowing you to retrieve emails from Google Archive. This does not include messages in your Spam or Trash Folders.

You can use the scrolling bar or the search bar to find the specific message that you are looking for.

The Advanced Search Tool Option 

(Better if you have a busy archive)

The All Mail method can be great in retrieving emails from Google Archive if you only have a few messages in your archive.

However, if your Gmail archive is pretty full, it may be easier to locate your emails using the Gmail Advanced Search tool. To do this open your Gmail inbox and click the down arrow in the right of the search bar. This will make the Advanced Search dialog box to appear.

retrieve emails from Google Archive

The red mark shows the arrow that you must click to access the Advanced Search dialogue box

See here the arrow that appears in the search bar when you hovel your mouse over it.

retrieve emails from Google Archive

This Advanced Search dialog box will appear.

In this example, I have lost some important tickets I remember buying using Eventbrite within the two months. I type the word “tickets” in the ‘has the words’ field in the dialogue box. I set the ‘date within’ within the timeframe of ‘within 2 weeks’.

When you’ve put all of the information you know about the email you are looking for, click the search button.

retrieve emails from Google Archive

The red boxes show the details I have entered. In words used I have written ‘tickets’ as this was the subject of the email I am looking for. In the time period I have selected 2 weeks. I have selected ‘All Mail’, as this will search not only your inbox, but your archive also

There are multiple emails that match the search criteria, however the email I am looking for appears at the top of the list- tickets for ShAFF. I have successfully retrieved my email from Google Archive.

Note that you can be more specific. As I know these tickets were from Eventbrite, I could enter this into the ‘From‘ section of the search box.

retrieve emails from Google Archive

Move Back to Inbox

Retrieve emails from Google Archive fully

This is really easy and will put your messages back into realms of you day to day Gmail account.

Simply tick the box next to the email, and click the ‘move to inbox’ button which looks similar to the archive button.


retrieve emails from Google Archive

This image shows the tick box of the specific email I want to move back. Once it has been selected, the button to use is highlighted on the top bar. Once this has been clicked, the message will be moved back into my inbox.

I hope this has helped you retrieve emails from Google Archive quickly and easily!

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