The new Northwest Railway Museum Archives provides a welcoming assembly space, museum administration offices, secure research archives, and public restroom facilities that support the organization’s rail tours and railway conservation and restoration activities. As an extension to the educational programming of the NW Railway Museum campus, the archives will be one of the few historical repositories in the Cascades possessing a collection focused on the influence of the railroad in the founding and growth of Western Washington.
The rail line was constructed by the Seattle, Lake Shore and Eastern Railway in 1890 and reorganized as the Seattle International Railway. By 1901 the railway and the depot were absorbed into the Northern Pacific Railway, with the Snoqualmie Depot remaining in active service until the Burlington Northern Railroad absorbed the Northern Pacific in the 1970 merger with the Great Northern Railway. Much has changed, but interest in and the importance of history remains present.
The collection of artifacts and history of this important period in Pacific Northwest history is now protected in this repository and available for research, tours, and learning through community events, training, and private appointments.