For archival purposes, I am storing a list of emails. I would like to be able to later find a particular message in my Gmail account. A unique message identifier is its Message-ID. However Gmail does not allow searching for it (returns an empty result). I don't really understand why, since the ID is in the message text.

Is there a way to retrieve a message by its Message-ID in Gmail?

2 Answers 2


This is now possible.

Announced in a recent blog post, you can now use a bunch of new search operators, including RFC 822 message ID.

From Gmail Help - Using advanced search


Find a message by the message-id header

Example: rfc822msgid:[email protected]

Meaning: Locates the exact message with the specified SMTP message-id.

  • 1
    To make things easier, you can use this Chrome extension: Gmail message ID finder. It allows to copy the ID together with the search operator. Commented May 8, 2020 at 0:24
  • If you need to create a link with the message id, allowing user to go straight to the email, you can use: https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/#all/{message_id}
    – beano
    Commented Dec 24, 2021 at 15:47

I use multiple labels on a single conversation.

One label refers to the subject/project and the 2nd label is simply titled "keep". When I need to find one of these important conversations, I just search for "label:projectx label:keep". The result is the small set of conversations that meet both requirements.

  • If you don't want to care "where" your message lives aka the label shouldn't matter, you can use #all as part of the URL when you grab it in a specific message/thread. Like https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/#all/abc123def456 per this excellent answer, stackoverflow.com/a/24463019/3794873
    – dragon788
    Commented Dec 4, 2019 at 19:59

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