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Digital Collections and Resources

News about Digital Collections


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The Washington State Library offers several digital collections from its many historical resources. All of these collections will continue to grow as more books, maps, newspapers and manuscripts are scanned.

Classics in Washington History

The Classics include full-text, online books about Washington history and culture.

Emma Smith DeVoe’s Papers and Scrapbooks

View the collection of general correspondence and scrapbooks of newspaper clippings relating to the women's suffrage movement in the United States in general and Washington State in particular. Collection includes scrapbooks by Emma Smith Devoe, Cora Smith Eaton, Clara Watson Elsom, and Bernice Sapp.

Historical Newspaper in Washington

The State Library offers a variety of newspapers online from Washington’s territorial period (1853-1889) with a searchable index.

More historical Washington Newspapers are available through the Chronicling America site at the Library of Congress.  This project is supported by the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Historical Maps

This collection includes maps from both the Library and the State Archives and covers the history of Washington from early exploration (1794) to modern times.

Historical Photos

The State Library's collection of photos, spanning 1851-1990, is now available through Digital Archives. This collection consists of photographs of various subjects related to Washington's history, people, geography, and economic development. The collection is searchable by keyword (person, place, or thing), people, photographer, and/or date.

Primarily Washington

Primarily Washington is the Washington State Library, Washington State Archives, and Legacy Washington's way of bridging the gap between the primary sources in our collections and the classroom. This portal contains digitized primary sources that have been partnered with curriculm developed by Washington State teachers. There are also featured exhibits for further study by students and all others wishing to learn more about the history of the Pacific Northwest.

Thurston County Pioneers before 1870

This searchable database of digital images contains biographical information about 210 people who immigrated to or were living in Thurston County, Washington Territory before 1870.

Governors of Washington State

This is a searchable database of digital images and biographical information about past governors of the State of Washington.

World War I: Soldiers Remembered

This collection contains several discrete sections: a collection of forms and photos from the Spokane Public Library about young soldiers from that area, art from artists embedded in the regiments, World War I enlistment cards from the State Archives, photos, documents, and other resources.

Washington Rural Heritage

Washington Rural Heritage (WRH) is an online aggregation of special collections from small and rural communities throughout the state of Washington. It features items important to Washington's history, culture, places, and people.

For more digital resources on Washington History, go to the Legacy Washington page.