5 Things About the State Archives

Oct 16, 2020

Front of the Barrett Building where the Wyoming State Archives is located.

From the Wyoming State Archives

In celebration of American Archives Month in October, archival entities throughout the country highlight the importance of records and historical documents. While most people have heard of state archives, many are not aware of what they do. In celebration of American Archives Month, here are “5 Things We Bet You Didn’t Know About the Wyoming State Archives!”

  1. You can access the Wyoming State Archives from home.
    Many of the State Archives digital resources are available online. Things like historical photographs, newspapers, maps, oral history interviews, and the Wyoming Blue Books, a one-stop shop for information on the history of Wyoming government, and a variety of other information. Just go to wyohistory.org and start browsing!
  2. What do you want to know about your Wyoming? You can research your family, town, school and lots more! Got a question about Wyoming history? We probably have an answer.
    The Wyoming State Archives is THE resource for Wyoming information and history. Information on historical events, the famous and infamous, community history, is available. Plus, reference archivists are available to help you with your informational search. The Archives is an invaluable tool for student research. With decades of combined experience using the materials, if they don’t have an answer to your question, they usually know where to look for it. There’s a reason why many authors visit the archives to research information for their books and articles.
  3. The Archives has a database of historic Wyoming Photographic collections.
    The Wyoming State Archives houses the photographic collections of J.E. Stimson, Frank Meyers, Thomas Carrigen, Miller-Meyers and Fendley. These historical photos are available for framing, use in books, etc for a small fee. Start looking now and you’ll be lost in history before you know it. And, you can come in to see our 250,000 photo collection any time, too!
  4. Archives are digital, too.
    This year the State Archives added the 1,000,000th file to our Digital Archives. You spend your work days on your computer, and so do state employees. The State Archives has a secure way to save and manage all those digital files, so the state’s history will be preserved, no matter what format the records are in.
  5. You can be a part of history.
    The Wyoming State Archives, along with the Wyoming State Museum and American Heritage Center in Laramie, is documenting the COVID-19 pandemic and requests public submissions. Items like diaries, written accounts, videos, vlogs, pictures, and other documents will provide researchers in the future a better picture of life during the current pandemic. Collecting these items now will ensure that the memories survive. The more stories that are added, the more complete a picture scholars of the future will see. We welcome submissions from any and all viewpoints, and communities large and small.
  6. BONUS – The Archives is a darn interesting place to visit.
    Whether you are researching Butch Cassidy, the Tea Pot Dome, Matthew Shepard, or the many and various other stories and people associated with the Cowboy State you will find a variety of resources and information about the topic.

American Archives Month is a collaborative effort by professional organizations and repositories around the nation to highlight the important of records of enduring value. Archivists are professionals who assess, collect, organize, preserve, maintain control of, and provide access to information that has lasting value, and they help people find and understand the information they need in those records.

The Wyoming State Archives is located in the Barrett Building first floor, 2301 Central Ave, Cheyenne WY 82002. For further information, contact Kathy Marquis, State Archivist at 307-777-8691 or message her at kathy.marquis@wyo.gov.

The State Archives is accessible according to the Americans with Disabilities Act guidelines. If you require special assistance, contact (307) 777-7826.

If you have a question about this or any other article, please contact us at statelibrary@wyo.gov

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