Here's the situation. I backed up an old iPhone 5S to iTunes on Windows via a USB cable. I bought a new iPhone SE and restored the backup onto it. Everything works fine...except...no past messages show in Messages. The view, that usually shows them in reverse chronological order, is empty. Using the search widget doesn't find anything either. However, after creating a new message, that goes to one of the existing contacts, suddenly all the past messages appear in the chain!
Obviously the messages are on the device, but not indexed properly, probably a result of the backup and restore. Is there some way to re-index them so they'll show in the chronological view and be searchable via the search widget? Would another backup and restore help?
Seems to be related to Weeks after updating to iOS 10.0.1, all but ~5 most recent messages disappeared, and messages would no longer organize by time and Old iMessages and text messages have all disappeared after iOS 10 update? neither of which got an answer.