The Research Library houses more than 12,000 linear feet of original documents, dating from the late eighteenth century to the present. Included are personal papers of individuals and families and records of a wide range of business, professional, cultural, fraternal, and other organizations. Among the types of sources included are correspondence, speeches, diaries and reminiscences, scrapbooks, ships' logbooks, business and association records, and legal agreements. Also included are pictorial materials, such as posters, architectural drawings, and ship and wagon plans.

Topics covered include early exploration of the Oregon Country, the fur trade, missionary activity, overland migration to the Pacific Northwest, politics and government, business development (including lumber, fishing, mining, banking, and transportation), labor, the arts, and the activities of women and ethnic groups.

A small percentage of catalog records for manuscripts and other archival collections are found in our online catalog. We regularly add collections to the online catalog.

Most collections, however, are identified only through an in-house manuscripts card catalog.