For many decades, our museum made do with little to no collections budget, but are trying to change that and improve that care by bring our collection care practices up to museum best practice standards. To do this, it means rehousing much of our collection. We would like to make sure both that our collection is properly housed in the appropriate archival material but also housed in a way that as the museum grows, the collection can be safely and effectively moved in the future. We have already begun this process but need additional funding to continue.
Our collection started in 1939 and was housed in the local school until the 1960s when the historical society was formed to take it over. Since the late 1970s the Museum has been in a converted 1949 house and an out building herein referred to as the Farm Shed.
When we hired our current Assistant Director in 2006, we prioritized gaining intellectual control over the collection and improved collections storage. In 2008, the Museum had a General Conservation Needs Assessment by Dana Senge and have been working on recommendations from that report since. This has been done on a multipronged approach: We digitized, cataloged and rehoused our most utilized photographic collections to make them more accessible to the public. We digitized our catalog system and we have currently substantially completed an 8-year full inventory of our collection. We purchased supplies and rehoused a substantial part of the Snoqualmie Valley Record newspaper negative collection of over 100,000 images through funding from 4Culture. We purchased supplies and rehoused the majority of our glass and pottery collection through funding from the Snoqualmie Tribe and moved it a different storage location to allow for more climate-controlled storage for more sensitive items. We purchased supplies and rehoused the majority of our archive collections through funding from our general budget and 4Culture.
We recently received funding to continue this work through a Collections Care Grant from 4Culture to purchase supplies to rehouse our schools, merchandising, and organizations collections; additional supplies to house incoming photograph and archive materials; muslin covers for some of our most venerable historic clothing pieces and supplies to begin rehousing our library collections. At the same time we are making building repairs through a grant from the Snoqualmie Tribe and support from the City of North Bend to help preserve the climate of the collection.