Tuesday, October 05, 2004

Washington State Opens Digital Archives, First to Do It

Washington has opened what is believed to be the nation's first digital archives for state government, holding everything from birth records to the first election results in Washington Territory in 1854.
Housed in a new building on the Eastern Washington University campus, the $14.5 million Washington State Digital Archives makes certain records and electronic documents available without fear of damage.

The census records, for example, contain county demographic information from 1847-1892. Also included are naturalization records ranging from 1854-1988, depending on the county, and marriage records dating back to 1900.
Certified copies of documents can be purchased through a secure channel, eliminating the need to travel to Olympia or county courthouses where the paperwork is filed, digital archivist Adam Jansen said.