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Category: Digital Archives

History mystery: Do you know this man?

History mystery: Do you know this man?

A few months ago, a Digital Archives user wrote in to the Washington State Archives to ask about the identity of the man in the photo on the right. We still can’t answer the question. Perhaps you can help. The photo was taken by Vibert Jeffers in 1939. It comes from the Susan Parish Photograph Collection and it was given the title “Unidentified Representative.” The record further describes him as a former member of the Washington State House of Representatives….

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Searching old newspapers is easier thanks to Gordon

Searching old newspapers is easier thanks to Gordon

Meet Gordon Russ. He won the Washington State Digital Archives’ 200 million contest, making the closest guess of December 5th for the day Digital Archives would make its 200 millionth entry into its database. There was no science behind this guess. He picked it simply because of the fact that it was his birthday. Gordon took home an Ancestry DNA kit, a fitting gift for the history buff.  Gordon is a volunteer at the Washington State Library. Retired in 2003,…

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Contest: Guess date when Digital Archives reaches 200 million records

Contest: Guess date when Digital Archives reaches 200 million records

If you’re into genealogy or just like contests, you’ll want to take part in this new one run by our State Archives. The State Digital Archives has nearly 196 million records, and it will reach the 200 million mark in the near future. With the record milestone approaching, the State Archives has started a contest in which the first person to guess the correct, exact date when Digital Archives reaches the 200 millionth record will win an AncestryDNA kit. Don’t…

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From the Archives: Classic photo of Rosario Beach

From the Archives: Classic photo of Rosario Beach

While a drive to Deception Pass State Park spanning Whidbey and Fidalgo islands in northwestern Washington is scenic any time of the year, it’s especially gorgeous on sunny summer days. Need proof? Check out this 1936 photo of Rosario Beach, just north of Deception Pass. You can find the digitized photo by going to the Washington State Digital Archives website and then clicking on the State Parks and Recreation Commission, Photographs of Park Development, 1933-1938 collection. Please follow and like…

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Digital Archives’ classic fair photos

Digital Archives’ classic fair photos

For many people throughout Washington, a summer highlight is attending the local fair. In fact, many folks in the Olympia area have attended Capital Lakefair, which wraps up this weekend. The main fair season is coming up. The Seafair Torchlight Night is July 29 and Seafair Weekend is Aug. 4-6. And the Washington State Fair in Puyallup is Sept. 1-24. Go here to see a listing of fairs, festivals and other events in our state this year. Fairs are fun…

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From the Archives: Classic mountain photos!

From the Archives: Classic mountain photos!

Mountains are among the physical marvels that draw visitors throughout the world to our state and make Washingtonians proud to call this place home. Our mountains serve as grand and inspiring, yet dangerous, playgrounds for climbers, scramblers, backpackers, dayhikers and others wanting to get close to nature. Several of Washington’s most notable peaks are dormant volcanoes, including one (Mount St. Helens) that has been active more than once in recent decades. You can find many classic photos of Washington’s best-known…

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From Digital Archives: Classic WA sailing photos

From Digital Archives: Classic WA sailing photos

When you visit Puget Sound or one of the many lakes in Washington, especially during the gorgeous summer months here, you’re bound to see someone sailing. (And maybe you’re the one on the sailboat!) Sailing has been a popular activity around these waters about as long as sailboats first appeared here. These photos on the Washington State Digital Archives website confirm it. The top picture shows a couple of sailboats on Lake Washington around 1960. The middle shot features a…

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Dollivers visit building named after their father

Dollivers visit building named after their father

It isn’t every day that a building is named after one of your parents. In the case of Peter and Beth Dolliver, the James M. Dolliver Building in Olympia is named after their father, who was an advisor and chief of staff for Gov. Dan Evans for 12 years and later a State Supreme Court Justice for nearly a quarter century, including two years as Chief Justice. James Dolliver died in 2004 at age 80. The building, located at 801…

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Batman star Adam West’s connection to Washington State Archives

Batman star Adam West’s connection to Washington State Archives

Like many “Batman” fans, we were saddened to hear of last week’s passing of Adam West. West, who played Batman on the 1960s TV series, died in Los Angeles on June 9 following a brief battle with leukemia. He was 88. What we didn’t know is that our State Archives has a connection to the actor who played the Caped Crusader in the popular yet short-lived series.   Holy Archives, Batman! West had deep roots in Washington! On September 19, 1928,…

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From Digital Archives: photos of 1889 Seattle Fire

From Digital Archives: photos of 1889 Seattle Fire

When you ask the historical significance of June 6, most people think of the anniversary of D-Day. But June 6 also marks a horrific event in Seattle history. On that date in 1889, a fire destroyed much of Seattle, which was then a timber town and many years from becoming a world-famous city. Our Legacy Washington program’s exhibit on the year when Washington reached statehood, “Washington 1889: Blazes, Rails and Year of Statehood,” includes a section on the 1889 Great…

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