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About This Collection

Yakima 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.

Map of Sunnyside, Washington, 1953.Map of Sunnyside, Washington, 1953.
Sunnyside Historical Museum Collection.
Yakima County Heritage is coordinated by Yakima Valley Libraries, which digitizes resources from its own archives and also works with local heritage organizations to digitize and provide enhanced access to their historical collections. If you have corrections or additional details regarding records in the collection, please use the digital collection's public comments feature, or contact Yakima Valley Libraries directly to update the information.


Christian Cooperative Colony Collection
Held by the Sunnyside Historical Museum, this collection comprises hundreds of pages of correspondence between the founding members of the Christian Cooperative Colony, a religious sect that was responsible for incorporating the city of Sunnyside, Washington in 1902. In a decade remembered as the "Naughty '90s," and in a region labeled the "Wild West," three men made plans to build a utopian community based on Christian principles. Membership in the unlikely Eden was by invitation only—potential settlers were recruited by the founders based on demonstrated moral fiber and character. In 1898 the three partners bought the town site of what is today Sunnyside, Washington and established the Christian Cooperative Colony. Settlers of suitable virtue could purchase land from the Cooperative, but every deed included a morals clause: any property owner found guilty of drinking, dancing, or gambling would forfeit their property. The grand plan of the colony, as well as its struggles and achievements, are documented throughout the written correspondence between these founding members. The broad strokes of their story have been entered into the historical record, but the details have remained a hidden history. This digital collection, a collaborative 2013-2014 project of the Sunnyside Historical Museum and Yakima Valley Libraries, preserves those details and makes them accessible to a global audience.

Rights & Use

Yakima Valley Libraries (YVL), in collaboration with multiple contributing organizations, created the digital images available through Yakima County Heritage. These images were originally created as master images, scanned at 600 ppi in TIFF format. Reproductions of the images in the Yakima County Heritage collections are available under the following terms. Any use of Yakima County Heritage images implies acceptance of these terms:

1. Images in this collection are available for use in research, teaching, and private study. Such use does not include publication in print or on the Internet without prior written permission from the copyright holder.

2. Requests for use of Yakima County Heritage images that are directed to YVL will be forwarded to the organization or individual that contributed the requested image.

3. The user will impose no changes, additions or deletions to any images made available through the Yakima County Heritage website.

4. The user agrees not to redistribute any Yakima County Heritage images without prior written agreement from the copyright owner.

5. Images approved for print publication must include a credit line attributing the source and ownership of the image. YVL requests a print copy of the publication be sent to

Yakima Valley Libraries
102 North Third Street
Yakima, WA 98901

for the library collection.

6. Images approved for Internet display by YVL or by the organization that contributed the original image must be no more than 72 dpi and must include a link to the source image on the Yakima County Heritage website, a credit line acknowledging ownership of the image, and image watermark (if present).

7. All subcontracts regarding further reproduction of a reproduction obtained from Yakima County Heritage collections, pursuant to this nonexclusive license, shall incorporate this agreement and all of its terms shall be applicable. No subcontracts may be entered into for the purpose of reproducing these images without the express written consent of Yakima Valley Libraries or the contributing organization.

8. The user agrees to indemnify and hold harmless Yakima Valley Libraries for any loss or damage, including reasonable attorney fees that Yakima Valley Libraries may incur, directly or indirectly, by reason of User's use and/or reprinting of images from the Yakima County Heritage collection.

About Yakima Valley Libraries

Yakima Valley Libraries is located in Yakima County in south central Washington State. Yakima County is 4,296 square miles and is the second largest county in Washington State. Yakima Valley Libraries serves the entire county with the exception of the City of Grandview. Yakima Valley Libraries is a junior taxing district that provides library services to the general public and is primarily supported through local property taxes.

The rural county library district was formed in 1945 and is now comprised of a central library and 16 community libraries located throughout Yakima County. All towns or cities, with the exception of the City of Grandview, are either annexed to or contracted with Yakima Valley Libraries for library services. Annexed cities include Harrah, Moxee, Selah, Yakima (Yakima Central, Southeast, and West Valley), Sunnyside, Toppenish, Wapato, and Zillah. Contracting cities include Mabton, Granger, Tieton and Naches. Rural county locations include Buena, Terrace Heights, and White Swan. Yakima Valley Libraries currently serves over 240,000 people in Yakima County.

Washington Rural Heritage home

Contributing Institutions

Yakima V

Yakima Valley Libraries

Sunnyside Historical Museum

Sunnyside Historical Museum

(509) 837-2105

704 S. 4th St.

Located at 4th Street and Grant Avenue

Sunnyside, WA 98944

Additional Resources

Yakima Memory

Yakima Memory

Yakima Memory features images from the collections at the Yakima Valley Libraries and the Yakima Valley Museum.

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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