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How To Restore An Archived Whatsapp Chat Thread

You can archive conversations in Whatsapp. When you archive a conversation, you keep every message, text or otherwise, sent over it. The people in the conversation don’t know the thread has been archived. It’s just a bit of cleaning up that you’ve done on your end. When you archive a thread, it no longer appears in the Chat tab in Whatsapp. On the surface, it seems that once you archive a conversation, it’s gone. It is in fact still there and you can read it, view files shared over it, and restore an archived Whatsapp chat thread anytime you want.

Archive Whatsapp Chat Thread

To archive a thread, swipe left on it. Additional options will appear one of which will be ‘Archive’. Tap it to archive the thread.

View Archived Chat Thread

An archived chat thread is removed from the main Chat tab. If you need to reread a conversation, it seems as though there’s no way to do that. That’s not the case. Open Whatsapp and go to the Chat thread. Scroll to the very top. Swipe down on the app’s top bar. You will see an ‘Archived chats’ option appear just above the search bar.

Restore An Archived Whatsapp Thread

There are two ways to restore an archived Whatsapp thread. The first is to visit your archived chat (see previous section). Swipe left on the thread you want to restore and tap the ‘Unarchive’ option. The conversation thread will return to your Chats tab.

An alternative method to restore an archived Whatsapp thread is to simply send the same contact/group a new message. Doing so will restore their entire conversation thread to the Chat tab. It will be restored to the top of the thread.

The archived chats are kind of hidden if you look at the overall design of the app. Users might think they can access the archived chats from the Settings. Of course, the archived chats aren’t there. It’s likely a user might think they can never get an archived chat back even though that’s not how the archive function works.

It’s worth mentioning that the search bar will search both active and archived chat threads. If you’ve archived a conversation thread to keep it out of sight, or away from prying eyes that might get into your phone then your solution isn’t any good. It’s probably better to backup a chat thread and then delete it from Whatsapp if you’re trying to hide it. If you don’t want to do that, consider enabling two-step verification on Whatsapp.


  1. Hi, thanks for your tutorial it was very interesting. However I have never found WhatsApp straight forward to use, I don’t understand why because everyone else seems ok with it. And as usual I am unable to access archives in the ways you suggest. Still never mind, I expect its just me. The times I’ve deleted WhatsApp out of pure frustration, I looks like I’ll be doing it again.

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