OLYMPIA — The state archives might not have every episode of the long-running TV series “Law and Order” in its collections, but it does have an extensive collection of legal and historical documents and photos featuring criminals, law enforcement and courts in Washington.
This collection provides the theme for the state’s sixth annual Archives Month this October. This year’s official theme is, “LAW & ORDER IN THE ARCHIVES: Crooks, Cops and Courts.” The month-long event, part of a national celebration, is co-sponsored by the Washington State Archives, a division of the Office of Secretary of State. To learn more about the state archives, go to its Web site at http://www.sos.wa.gov/archives/.
Throughout October, the public is encouraged to explore, free of charge, millions of items through the state archives and its digital archives, historical societies, museums, public libraries and university special collections.
“Here in Washington, there are interesting stories about criminals – some notorious – and the admirable efforts of our law enforcement and courts to bring them to justice,” said Secretary of State Sam Reed. “Thanks to our state archives, an enormous number of documents related to crime, cops and courts are preserved for the public to see, and it’s exciting to make this collection this year’s Archives Month theme.
“I encourage people to go to one of the archives events this month and learn how to explore a part of Washington history or even their own family roots,” Reed added.
The State Archives houses nearly 2 billion legal and historical items and is the
home for the nation’s first Digital Archives (located on the Eastern Washington
University campus in Cheney), which preserves electronic records in an award-
winning online database that is used by thousands of people every day. Check
it out at www.digitalarchives.wa.gov .