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Archiving Mac Mail

The following instructions will guide you through archiving emails in Mac Mail to your local computer.

  1. Launch Mail and right click your inbox from the left menu and select New Mailbox. Name the mailbox with a date/years associated with the messages for future reference (Archive 2017/2018) and choose On My Mac as the location. Press OK. The new mailbox name should appear in the drop down at the left.
  2. Select all of the messages you want to archive and drag and drop them into the new Archive 2017/2018 mailbox.
  3. Export your selected emails by control-click on the mailbox name in the left list and select Export mailbox. Choose where you want to save your archive on your computer, and subfolders if you have any by selecting Export all subfolders. Exporting your mail could take some time.
  4. Once exported, you should see a mailbox icon appear where you exported the mail. Check to make sure all of the emails you exported are in there.
  5. Now that the archived mail folder has been exported to another location on your computer, delete the archive in Mail app by control-click the mailbox and select Delete Mailbox.
  6. When you want to view your exported archived messages, you should do so in Mac mail. Once Mail is launched select File > Import Mailboxes (select Apple Mail as date format). Click continue and navigate to wherever you just exported the messages, and then click Choose. Your archived messages should now appear in your mail client.
  7. When you are done viewing archived messages, you can delete them again by control-click the imported mailbox and click Delete Mailbox. All of the archived messages can still be found in the original exported mailbox location you specified in your computers location earlier.
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