There has been discussions around Empathy to add a more comprehensive History solution (see bug #619866). Below is a UI proposal for how this could be implemented. Please ignore black field at the top of image, just a screen shot error).
To look for a history item, the user enters a search criteria in the box. The search will start as soon as the user starts to type in the search field. The results will be shown in the list below. If the user left click on an event, the details will be displayed below in the details box.
Right click could give the user options to add contact, to delete message etc.