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About This Collection

Whitman County Heritage is a project of Washington Rural Heritage, a collection of historically significant materials residing in libraries, heritage institutions, and private collections throughout Washington State. The collection includes photographs, documents, and artifacts which tell the stories of Washington's small and rural communities.

Whitman County Heritage is coordinated by the Whitman County Library (Colfax, WA), which works with local heritage organizations to digitize and provide enhanced access to historically significant materials documenting the history of Whitman County and communities throughout Eastern Washington's Palouse Region. In addition to working with institutional partners, Whitman County Library is committed to uncovering the wealth of unique historical materials residing in the private family collections of the communities within its service area. To view materials held in the private collections of more than 100 Whitman County residents, click here. To learn more about how you can contribute your historical materials to this community based digitization project, please contact the Whitman County Library.


  • Battle Days Museum Collection
    This museum houses many artifacts from the Rosalia, Washington area, including reproduction photos of historical value.
  • Guy Albion Historical Society, Dee Harrison Museum Collection
    Among the variety of items on display in this museum is an impressive array of historical photos including early aerial views of Albion and of various community businesses over the years.
  • Oakesdale Historical Society, McCoy Valley Museum Collection
    Housed in the Oakesdale Community Center, this museum features numerous photographic collections organized by topic, documenting the early people, businesses, and events that shaped the history of this community.
  • Palouse Empire Fair Collection
    The photos selected for this collection are a small sampling of a larger photographic scrapbook collection documenting the history of this annual fair.
  • Pine City Historical Society Collection
    The photos included in this collection feature the best of the historical society's scrapbook collection documenting the Pince City area.
  • Rosalia Visitors Resource and Interpretive Center Collection
    This well-known landmark building was once a Texaco station. This history of the building, as well as other aspects of Rosalia, Washington are documented in the collection.
  • Roy M. Chatters Newspaper and Print Museum Collection
    These photos, depicting a cross-section of the history of the Palouse, are taken from photographic scrapbooks and reproductions housed in the museum.
  • Staley Museum Collection
    The Staley family build their home in 1889 outside the town of Staley, Washington. This home was moved from its original site to its present location off Highway 195 south of Pullman, Washington. The home was restored as a museum to house family history and memorabilia. This photographic collection from the museum includes Staley area history, family history, and photos taken from their scrapbook library as well as a sampling of artifacts found in the museum.
  • Tekoa Museum Collection
    The photographs in this collection are primarily taken from a photo album collection in the museum dating back to the early 1880s. Also included in the collection are larger items from the museum such as portrait drawings of residents, some town plat maps, and a series of images depicting Miss Irene Hoare.
  • Whitman County Library History Collection
    Early story time events and bookmobile operations are depicted in this scrapbook photograph collection documenting the history of the public library service in Whitman County, Washington.
  • Washington State University Libraries—Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections
    A selection of unique and rare photos from the extensive WSU archvies, representing various communities throughout Whitman County.

Rights & Use

Many items from the Whitman County Heritage collection are under protection of copyright. Permission to digitize and display has been obtained from copyright holder/contributor and made available for use in research, teaching, and private study. Please contact Whitman County Library at 509-397-4366 and/or contributing institution to obtain permission for uses beyond personal, education, or “fair use” (17 U.S.C. 107).

View the Washington Rural Heritage Rights & Use Statement for additional information.

Whitman County Library

The Whitman County Library operates out of 14 branches throughout Whitman County, Washington. It is the community's #1 resource for information, recreation, and discovery. Visit the Whitman County Library's website for more information.

Coordinated By

Whitman County Library, main branch

Whitman County Library

(509) 397-4366

102 S. Main Street

Colfax, WA 99111-1863

Project Partners

Museums & Historical Societies

  • Battle Days Museum (Rosalia, WA)
  • Dee Harrison Museum (Albion, WA)
  • McCoy Valley Museum (Oakesdale, WA)
  • Pine City Historical Society
  • Rosalia Visitor's Resource and Interpretive Center
  • Roy M. Chatters Newspaper and Print Museum (Palouse, WA)
  • St. John Museum
  • Staley Museum
  • Tekoa Museum
  • Whitman County Historical Society

Community Organizations

  • Artisans at the Dahmen Barn
  • Athenaeum Club (Colfax, WA)
  • Bank of Whitman (Columbia Bank)
  • Bethel Cemetery
  • City of Colfax
  • Colfax High School
  • Community Current
  • Endicott School District
  • McGregor Company
  • Palouse Empire Fair
  • Selbu Church
  • Steptoe School
  • Washington State University—Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections
  • Palouse Magazine
  • Whitman County Gazette

Exhibit Partners

  • McGregor Company
  • Creative Image Photography
  • Whitman County Preservation Funds

This project is supported with Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) funding provided by the federal Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) through the Washington State Library, a division of the Office of the Secretary of State.

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