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Visit the Archives

Visit the Archives


Phone / Email Hours

Monday to Friday, 9 am - 4 pm

  • Customer service via email or phone

Lobby Hours

Tuesday and Wednesday, 10 am - 3 pm

  • Walk-in, self-service microfilm (no appointment needed)

Research Room Hours

Appointment Only

  • All other records research

building covered in graffiti art 

Exterior of King County Archives building, 1215 E. Fir Street, 2017


1215 E. Fir St.
Seattle, WA 98122



There is free parking inside the gate and additional street parking nearby.

Do I Need an Appointment?


Research Recorded Documents

You don't need an appointment to visit the Archives during lobby hours. The lobby is equipped with microfilm readers / scanners for self-service research of recorded documents.

The recorded documents collection consists of property ownership records such as deeds, easements, surveys, short plats, and mortgages. We hold recorded documents from 1853 to July 31, 1991, which are available on microfilm only.

Row of chairs in front of a row of computers 

King County Archives patron lobby. Photo Credit: Matthew S. Browning.


Research Other Records

The Archives research room is open by appointment.

Please contact the Archives at least 48 hours advance to access archival records other than recorded documents. This gives Archives staff time to identify and retrieve records that are most responsive to your research topic.

Large room with two people sitting at tables doing research  

King County Archives research room. Photo Credit: Matthew S. Browning.


Plan Your Visit


Before you visit King County Archives, you can do a few things to make your visit more productive.


Consider your topic

  • What kind of information are you trying to find? The more specific you are, the better we can help you.
  • Check our FAQs and research guides for information about our records.
  • Contact the Archives for a research consultation. Email or call 206-263-2480.

Gather your research materials

  • Bring your notes.
  • Bring a mobile device or digital camera to take pictures of records.

Need accommodations?

Please let us know if you require assistive technology or accessibility accommodations. King County Archives is committed to making sure our spaces and materials are accessible for all patrons.


When You Arrive


King County Archives preserves irreplaceable, unique county records. We hold them in trust for all King County citizens and provide access. To protect these records for future generations and out of respect for your fellow researchers, we ask that you abide by the following policies.

  • Check in at the lobby desk. An Archives staff member is there to assist you.
  • The Archives provides lockers and coat racks for safe storage of your personal belongings.
  • Keep archival materials safe by storing food and drinks in the lockers near the desk.
  • Use a pencil to take notes. Pens or other permanent marking tools can deface historical materials.
  • Turn off your mobile device or put it on vibrate to avoid disturbing other patrons. If you need to take a call, please do so in the lobby or outside.
  • Ask for assistance when scanning archival materials.
  • King County Archives duplicates records in its holdings on behalf of patrons. See our Frequently Asked Questions for more information about these services.
Shelves filled with large, old records volumes  

Historical King County government records volumes. Photo Credit: Matthew S. Browning.




Click View Larger Map to open the map in a new tab and to type in your address for directions.



  • I-5 North or South
  • Take the James Street Exit
  • Head east on James Street up the hill. The road will turn into Cherry Street
  • Right on 12th Avenue
  • Left on East Fir Street
  • The Archives buiding is on the south side of Fir Street halfway between 12th Avenue and 13th Avenue. Drive through the gate and proceed until you find parking on the right.

By bus

Access Metro's Trip Planner to find your route and to check for route and schedule changes.


By street car

The First Hill Line of the Seattle Street Car stops at 14th and Jefferson, just a few blocks from the Archives. This is an easy way to travel to the Archives from Pioneer Square or Capitol Hill. Access the Seattle Streetcar site and plan your trip.

TTY Relay 711

Phone / Email Hours

Monday to Friday, 9 am - 4 pm

Walk-in Lobby Hours

Tuesday and Wednesday, 10 am - 3 pm