State Government

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State Archives

 

Overview of State Records Collections

The State Records Collections provide a vital account of public government in Washington State, beginning with the establishment of Washington Territory in 1853 and continuing to the present.

Included among the collection are the papers of each governor, legislative records, court records, records from all state agencies, and all of the "official records" of the state, including governors' proclamations, executive orders, election results, and the laws as passed and signed.

State Government Archives Research Services -

Records transferred to the Archives are open to the public for research under the terms of the Public Disclosure Act. Providing access to these records is the top priority of the State Records research staff.

Contact the State Government Archives

Hours: 8:30 AM - 4:30 PM, Monday through Friday (excluding state holidays)
Location: 1129 Washington Street SE, Olympia, WA 98504
Mailing Address: Washington State Archives
State Government Archives
PO Box 40238
Olympia, Washington 98504-0238
E-mail: research@sos.wa.gov
Telephone: (360) 586-1492
Fax: (360) 664-8814

Directions:

I-5 Southbound:

From I-5 south take exit 105A; follow the "State Capitol" lane that parallels the freeway for 1/4 mile.

At the second traffic light (Capitol Way, the first light after the tunnel), turn right. Turn right again at the next traffic light (11th Ave.). At the next traffic light (Washington St.), turn right once more.

The Archives building is on the right side of Washington Street, just before the entrance to the Plaza Garage.

I-5 Northbound:

From I-5 north take exit 105; keep to the left; follow the "State Capitol" lane.

At the second traffic light (Capitol Way, the first light after the tunnel), turn right. Turn right again at the next traffic light (11th Ave.). At the next traffic light (Washington St.), turn right once more.

The Archives building is on the right side of Washington Street, just before the entrance to the Plaza Garage.

Capitol Campus Map

Parking:

Three free parking spaces in front of the Archives building are available for Archives researchers only. Additional parking is available for a fee of $1.50 per hour on Level P1 of the Department of Natural Resources parking lot located across from the Archives building on Washington Street. Metered street parking is also available a few blocks to the north on Washington Street. Please note there is no visitor parking in the Plaza Garage.

Transit:

There is a bus stop on the western side of the Archives building on Capitol Way. For bus routes and schedules, see the Intercity Transit website at http://www.intercitytransit.com. 

Research & Copy Fee Schedule:

There is no charge to request and to view these public archival documents; however, certain fees do exist for document copies, photographic reproductions, and for special research services by Archives staff.

Research Policy & Fee Schedule

Archival Records Acquisition/Transfer

Records designated as "archival" are transferred to the Archives when they are no longer needed on a regular basis by the government office in which they originate. Archival records must be accompanied by a listing of the contents of each box transferred. Follow the links provided for the necessary forms and instructions for transferring records to the Archives.

Archival publications

State Archives Forms for Downloading

Forms in Adobe PDF format can only be viewed with an Adobe® Acrobat® Reader, which can be downloaded from Adobe Systems, Inc. Click the icon below to go to the Adobe web site and download a free reader.

Facsimile Signatures

The Uniform Facsimile Signature of Public Officials Act requires Washington's state and local government officials to file a notarized certificate of manual signature with the Office of the Secretary of State in order to use facsimile signatures on certain public documents. The Washington State Archives accepts certificates of manual signature on behalf of the Office of the Secretary of State.

Officials wishing to file a certificate of manual signature should fill out the form above, including the signature stamp and the manual signature in the places indicated. The notarized form may be mailed to:

Attn: Facsimile Signatures
Washington State Archives
PO Box 40238
Olympia, WA 98504-0238

Upon receipt the Office of the Secretary of State, Archives Division, will date stamp the document as “Date Filed” and file it alphabetically by surname of signatory.  The documents are kept as a permanent record. If verification of filing is desired, please enclose a note stating that a stamped return copy is requested, and include a self-addressed stamped envelope or an email address for an electronic copy.