Today’s post is going to be quite short, as these are the answers to the questions in its title. 🙂 If you want to know how long Messenger stores your messages and how to go back to the beginning of a conversation with a selected person, I encourage you to read the information below.

How long does Messenger keep messages?

messenger storage messages

Messenger stores messages indefinitely. This means that they are not automatically deleted after a certain amount of time, but remain in the conversation history until the user deletes them themselves. So we can easily go back to the very beginning of our presence on Facebook and Messenger and read messages from many years ago.

As I mentioned above, the only way to make older messages on Messenger disappear is for the user to delete the chat themselves. Even blocking another person on Messenger will not cause the previously listed messages to stop displaying.

The fact that Messenger stores messages permanently has many advantages. It allows us to remember who we’ve spoken to in the past, and to go back to important information if we need to.

If you want to treat yourself to a moment of nostalgia, you can go back to the very beginning of your Messenger conversation with a loved one. I’m sure it will give you a lot of interesting experiences and allow you to recall moments you’ve probably forgotten.

How do you see the start of a conversation on Messenger? Find old messages

To get to the beginning of a conversation on Messenger with a person of your choice, you can simply open the conversation and scroll to the very beginning. Unfortunately – this is not convenient and, what’s more, takes a lot of time. Especially if you use the mobile app on your phone for this.

Fortunately, there are two quicker ways to open the beginning of a conversation on Messenger without having to manually scroll through. I’ve detailed both of them below.

1. Get to the start of a conversation using the Messenger search engine and a keyword

The option of using the built-in search engine on Messenger is not perfect, as it requires us to go backwards in memory. However, all we need to do is know what word we used at the very beginning (or closer to the beginning) of the conversation with the selected person, and we can find the first message without the slightest problem.

To make it easier, I will mention that at the beginning of a conversation, we are often asked for a phone number. Furthermore, conversations with a new, almost unknown person are usually very general and include questions like: “What’s up?” or “How are you?”. At the beginning of an acquaintance, there tends to be a lack of specific topics to talk about. However, we often show our interest in the other person by simply asking such general questions as I mentioned above.

You do not need to remember what word you or the other person used in the very first sentence of the conversation. Try to find any point of connection, and at least recall what you talked about initially with your close friend. All you need to do is go back a few years in the conversation, and it will already be easier to rewind the conversation on Messenger to the very beginning.

If you have an idea of what word or phrase you or your interlocutor may have used at the beginning of your conversation, follow these steps.

  1. Log into Facebook from a browser on your computer,
  2. click the Messenger icon at the top right of your screen,
  3. when the list of conversations unfolds, click the “See all in Messenger” option at the bottom,
  4. select the conversation you would like to go back to the beginning,
  5. select the “Conversation information” option. This is represented by the icon with an ‘i’ at the top,
  6. when the list of functions appears on the right, select the item with the magnifying glass icon called “Search”,
  7. when the search bar appears, type in the word or phrase in question.
  8. I hope the above method has been helpful enough for you. If not, you will find a second one below.

2. Scrolling through a conversation on Messenger to the beginning using the app

A conversation on Messenger doesn’t have to be scrolled through manually. You can be clever and install an app on your phone for automatic scrolling. To be safe, I recommend only installing apps from safe and secure sources, such as Google Play or the App Store.

To write this article, I installed an app called Smart Scroll – Auto Scroll App, which I downloaded from the Play Store. I installed it because of its high average user rating; however, I am not convinced that it is the best app of its kind.

After installing the app, I had to grant it the necessary permissions to work and then select the app it was to scroll. Since I use Messenger Lite, I chose this app.

In the Smart Scroll settings, I set the speed and direction of scrolling. I wanted to scroll from the end of the conversation to the beginning, so I had to change the default scroll direction from bottom to top. I saved the settings and then went into Messenger Lite and selected a conversation with one of my friends. I pressed the icon indicating the start of scrolling that was displayed on the screen and waited for the conversation to scroll all the way to the beginning.

Unfortunately, what disappointed me was the very slow scrolling. Even though I selected the maximum scrolling speed in the settings, it happened at a snail’s pace. Therefore, I am not convinced that it is the best app of its kind available on the market. The fact is, however, that Smart Scroll did the dirty work for me, and I was able to get on with other things in the meantime.

Messenger message storage and navigation – a summary

In summary, messages stored in Messenger do not have an expiry date and this makes the app’s archive a kind of keepsake. As the volume of Messenger’s conversation archive continues to grow, it becomes increasingly difficult to find the parts of a conversation you want, especially to scroll right to the beginning.

However, there are three ways to find older conversations and scroll through the selected conversation to the first messages. The first way requires manual scrolling, the second requires knowing the keyword and the third requires installing a separate app.

Each method has its pros, but also its cons. Scrolling through conversations manually is time-consuming, but it does not require installing additional software or going back in memory. We don’t have to think about what we talked to the person about or what words we used.

Finding your first messages using Messenger’s built-in search engine is definitely faster, but only if you remember what words you used in your conversation with a particular person.

The third way is the most convenient, but it requires installing an additional app and giving it the required permissions. So I think the choice of method has to be tailored to your preferences.


Hi, my name is Marta. I am a content marketing specialist and copywriter with over 10 years of experience. On my blog I cover topics related to marketing, copywriting and blogging.

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