API method


Fetches history of messages and events from a channel.


Method access

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Content types

  • Rate limits

    Tier 3
  • This method is deprecated. It will stop functioning in February 2021 and will not work with newly created apps after June 10th, 2020. Learn more.

    Please use these methods instead:



    Authentication token bearing required scopes. Tokens should be passed as an HTTP Authorization header or alternatively, as a POST parameter.


    Channel to fetch history for.


    Number of messages to return, between 1 and 1000.

    Default: 100


    Include messages with latest or oldest timestamp in results.

    Default: 0


    End of time range of messages to include in results.

    Default: now


    Start of time range of messages to include in results.

    Default: 0


    Include unread_count_display in the output?

    Default: 0


    Present arguments as parameters in application/x-www-form-urlencoded querystring or POST body. This method does not currently accept application/json.

    Example responses

    Common successful response

    Typical success response containing the channel's history

        "ok": true,
        "messages": [
                "type": "message",
                "ts": "1358546515.000008",
                "user": "U2147483896",
                "text": "Hello"
                "type": "message",
                "ts": "1358546515.000007",
                "user": "U2147483896",
                "text": "World",
                "is_starred": true,
                "reactions": [
                        "name": "space_invader",
                        "count": 3,
                        "users": [
                        "name": "sweet_potato",
                        "count": 5,
                        "users": [
                "type": "something_else",
                "ts": "1358546515.000007"
                "text": "Containment unit is 98% full",
                "username": "ecto1138",
                "bot_id": "B19LU7CSY",
                "attachments": [
                        "text": "Don't get too attached",
                        "id": 1,
                        "fallback": "This is an attachment fallback"
                "type": "message",
                "subtype": "bot_message",
                "ts": "1503435956.000247"
        "has_more": false
    Alternate response

    Typical success response with latest timestamp and inclusive parameters specified

        "ok": true,
        "latest": "1512085950.000216",
        "messages": [
                "type": "message",
                "user": "U012AB3CDE",
                "text": "I find you punny and would like to smell your nose letter",
                "ts": "1512085950.000216"
        "has_more": false
    Common error response

    Error response when the specified channel cannot be found

        "ok": false,
        "error": "channel_not_found"

    This method returns a portion of message events from the specified public channel.

    To read the entire history for a channel, call the method with no latest or oldest arguments, and then continue paging using the instructions below.

    To retrieve a single message, set latest to the message’s ts value, inclusive to true, and dial your count down to 1.

    Bots belonging to Slack apps are not supported

    This method cannot be called with bot user tokens belonging to Slack apps, although legacy bot tokens will work. To use this method in a Slack app, use a user token imbued with the necessary scope. Stay tuned for updates as we bring a fuller feast of features to bots belonging to Slack apps.

    The messages array contains up to 100 messages between latest and oldest. If there were more than 100 messages between those two points, then has_more will be true.

    Provide timestamps in latest and oldest to specify the period in channel’s history you want to cover. If a message has the same timestamp as latest or oldest it will not be included in the list, unless inclusive is true. The inclusive parameter is ignored when latest or oldest is not specified.

    If the response includes has_more then the client can make another call, using the ts value of the final messages as the latest param to get the next page of messages.

    If there are more than 100 messages between the two timestamps then the messages returned are the ones closest to latest. In most cases an application will want the most recent messages and will page backward from there. If oldest is provided but not latest then the messages returned are those closest to oldest, allowing you to page forward through history if desired.

    Retrieving a single message

    channels.history can also be used to pluck a single message from the archive.

    You'll need a message's ts value, uniquely identifying it within a channel. You'll also need that channel's ID.

    Provide another message's ts value as the latest parameter. Specify true for the inclusive parameter and set the count to 1. If it exists, you'll receive the queried message in return.

    GET /api/channels.history?channel=C2EB2QT8A&latest=1476909142.000007&inclusive=true&count=1

    Easily generate a permalink URL for any specific message using chat.getPermalink.

    Message types

    Messages of type "message" are user-entered text messages sent to the channel, while other types are events that happened within the channel. All messages have both a type and a sortable ts, but the other fields depend on the type. For a list of all possible events, see the channel messages documentation.

    Messages that have been reacted to by team members will have a reactions array delightfully included.

    If a message has been starred by the calling user, the is_starred property will be present and true. This property is only added for starred items, so is not present in the majority of messages.

    The is_limited boolean property is only included for free teams that have reached the free message limit. If true, there are messages before the current result set, but they are beyond the message limit.


    This table lists the expected errors that this method could return. However, other errors can be returned in the case where the service is down or other unexpected factors affect processing. Callers should always check the value of the ok params in the response.


    Value passed for channel was invalid.


    Value passed for latest was invalid


    Value passed for oldest was invalid


    Caller is not a member of the channel.

    method_not_supported_for_channel_type [hidden]method not supported for channel type (generated)
    user_removed_from_team [hidden]user removed from team (generated)

    No authentication token provided.


    Some aspect of authentication cannot be validated. Either the provided token is invalid or the request originates from an IP address disallowed from making the request.


    Authentication token is for a deleted user or workspace when using a bot token.


    Authentication token is for a deleted user or workspace or the app has been removed when using a user token.


    The workspace token used in this request does not have the permissions necessary to complete the request. Make sure your app is a member of the conversation it's attempting to post a message to.


    The workspace is undergoing an enterprise migration and will not be available until migration is complete.


    Administrators have suspended the ability to post a message.


    The token used is not granted the specific scope permissions required to complete this request.


    The token type used in this request is not allowed.


    The method has been deprecated.


    The endpoint has been deprecated.


    Two factor setup is required.


    The method cannot be called from an Enterprise.


    The token used is not granted the specific workspace access required to complete this request.


    The method was either called with invalid arguments or some detail about the arguments passed are invalid, which is more likely when using complex arguments like blocks or attachments.


    The method was passed an argument whose name falls outside the bounds of accepted or expected values. This includes very long names and names with non-alphanumeric characters other than _. If you get this error, it is typically an indication that you have made a very malformed API call.


    The method was passed an array as an argument. Please only input valid strings.


    The method was called via a POST request, but the charset specified in the Content-Type header was invalid. Valid charset names are: utf-8 iso-8859-1.


    The method was called via a POST request with Content-Type application/x-www-form-urlencoded or multipart/form-data, but the form data was either missing or syntactically invalid.


    The method was called via a POST request, but the specified Content-Type was invalid. Valid types are: application/json application/x-www-form-urlencoded multipart/form-data text/plain.


    The method was called via a POST request and included a data payload, but the request did not include a Content-Type header.


    The workspace associated with your request is currently undergoing migration to an Enterprise Organization. Web API and other platform operations will be intermittently unavailable until the transition is complete.

    invalid_json [hidden]The method was called via a `POST` request with `Content-Type` `application/json`, but the body was not valid JSON.
    json_not_object [hidden]The method was called via a `POST` request a valid JSON body, but the JSON value was not an object.

    The request has been ratelimited. Refer to the Retry-After header for when to retry the request.


    Access to this method is limited on the current network


    The method was called via a POST request, but the POST data was either missing or truncated.

    upgrade_required [hidden]The calling application needs to be upgraded.

    The service is temporarily unavailable


    The server could not complete your operation(s) without encountering a catastrophic error. It's possible some aspect of the operation succeeded before the error was raised.


    The server could not complete your operation(s) without encountering an error, likely due to a transient issue on our end. It's possible some aspect of the operation succeeded before the error was raised.


    This table lists the expected warnings that this method will return. However, other warnings can be returned in the case where the service is experiencing unexpected trouble.


    The method was called via a POST request, and recommended practice for the specified Content-Type is to include a charset parameter. However, no charset was present. Specifically, non-form-data content types (e.g. text/plain) are the ones for which charset is recommended.


    The method was called via a POST request, and the specified Content-Type is not defined to understand the charset parameter. However, charset was in fact present. Specifically, form-data content types (e.g. multipart/form-data) are the ones for which charset is superfluous.


    The method called has been deprecated and may soon stop functioning. Examine the warning closely for suggestions on alternative methods to use or browse api.slack.com/changelog for more information.


    Need a token? Create and install a Slack app to begin.
    This will make a real API request. Beware of using it with live workspaces.

    API response

    Submit your arguments to see the API response
    This method is deprecated.

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