From the Supplement to the 119th Annual Meeting

Welcome to the Washington State Digital Archive

Adam Jansen, December 2004

The Office of the Secretary of State is pleased to announce the opening of the Washington State Digital Archives, the nation’s first archives dedicated specifically to the preservation of electronic records from both state and local agencies that have permanent legal, fiscal, or historical value. Located in Cheney, Washington, on the Eastern Washington University campus, the new facility was designed from the ground up to host this technically complex project. The Web interface and database storehouse were custom designed specifically to hold the unique and important electronic records found throughout the state, and to provide simple, straightforward access to researchers.

The agency began strategic planning for the digital archives in March 2000 and completed construction in June 2004.
The Washington State Digital Archive blends the latest technologies with traditional archival theory to create a first of its kind repository housing the historical electronic records of state and local government and making them easily accessible to the public, from anywhere, at anytime. The first records brought into the facility’s care were marriage records from three pilot counties—Chelan, Snohomish and Spokane—along with historic census and naturalization records from the Washington State Archives and Washington State Library.

More information about the project can be found on the archives web site at www.digitalarchives.wa.gov.

— Adam Jansen, digital archivist, the Washington State Archives.