Seattle Water Department Superintendent's Correspondence, 1891-1995  PDF

Overview of the Collection

Creator
Seattle (Wash.) Water Dept.
Title
Seattle Water Department Superintendent's Correspondence
Dates
1891-1995 (inclusive)
Quantity
9.8 cubic feet, (11 boxes)
Collection Number
8200-02
Summary
Records documenting the administration, activities and projects of the Seattle Water Department.
Repository
Seattle Municipal Archives
Seattle Municipal Archives
Office of the City Clerk
City of Seattle
PO Box 94728
98124-4728
Seattle, WA
Telephone: 206-233-7807
Fax: 206-386-9025
archives@seattle.gov
Access Restrictions

Records are open to the public.

Languages
English
Sponsor
Funding for processing this record series was provided through a grant from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission.


Historical NoteReturn to Top

A public waterworks was created by City Charter amendment in 1875. However, Seattle was served primarily by small private water companies for the next decade-and-a-half. Following the Great Fire of 1889, citizens voted to fund creation of a municipally owned water system. The City purchased the private systems and began development of the Cedar River Watershed, and since 1891, has owned and operated a municipal water system. The system was administered by the Superintendent of Water under the auspices of the Board of Public Works. In 1905 the Department of Lighting and Water Works was created. Five years later, the Water Department became a separate entity. Most of the water used by the Seattle Water Department came from the Cedar River Watershed property, which also provided income for the department through the selling of logging rights. Several timber companies including Weyerhaeuser Company, Scott Paper Company and Pacific States Lumber Company, all had contracts with the Water Department. In the 1950s, Seattle voters chose to add fluoride to the city's water supply and charged the Water Department with the task of fluoridating. The election was a close one, however, and debate over the policy lasted into the '70s. In 1997 the Water Department was consolidated with the utilities of the Engineering Department to form Seattle Public Utilities.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

Correspondence of the Superintendent of Water concerning all aspects of SWD activities. The bulk of the correspondence is in 54 letterpress volumes of outgoing letters spanning the years 1891-1958. Unbound correspondence is comprised of letters exchanged with other City departments, 1907-1957, and correspondence with other water districts, municipalities and government agencies, ca 1955-1995. Also included is correspondence with and about the Muckleshoot Indian Tribe regarding treaty right issues.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Preferred Citation

[Item and date], Seattle Water Department Superintendent's Correspondence , Record Series 8200-02. Box [number], Folder [number]. Seattle Municipal Archives.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top


Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top

The following section contains a detailed listing of the materials in the collection.

8200-02:  Water Department Superintendent's Correspondence , 1891-1995Return to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Box/Folder
1/1
Letterpress Volumes 1-7
1891-1908
2/1
Letterpress volumes 8-13
1908-1911
3/1
Letterpress volumes 14-19
1911-1914
4/1
Letterpress volumes 20-25
1914-1917
5/1
Letterpress volumes 26-31
1917-1920
6/1
Letterpress volumes 32-37
1920-1923
7/1
Letterpress volumes 38-43
1923-1931
8/1
Letterpress volumes 44-48
1931-1949
9/1
Letterpress volumes 49-54
1949-1958
10/1
Superintendent of Lighting and Water Works Correspondence
1907-1910
10/2
Chronological Correspondence
1927-1951
10/3
Superintendent of Buildings
1913-1951
10/4
City Council
1946-1957
10/5
City Engineer
1941-1949
10/6
Health Commissioner
1934-1943
10/7
Superintendent of Light Dept
1941-1944
10/8
Mayor
1932-1957
10/9
S. M. Taki re Regrade
1941
10/10
Everett, City of
1937-1965
10/11
Everett, City of
1966-1994
10/12
METRO
1989-1993
10/13
METRO
1986-1988
10/14
METRO
1982-1985
10/15
Muckleshoot Indian Tribe
1980-1991
11/1
Tacoma, City of
1987-1995
11/2
Tacoma, City of
1985-1986
11/3
Tacoma, City of
1983-1984
11/4
Tacoma, City of
1977-1982
11/5
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
1988-1996
11/6
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
1984-1987
11/7
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
1974-1979
11/8
University of Washington
1968-1988
11/9
Washington Dept. of Ecology
1988-1989
11/10
Washington Dept. of Fisheries re Cedar River Sockeye Project
1991

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

  • Subject Terms :
  • Cedar River Watershed (King County, Wash.)
  • Municipal water supply--Washington (State)--Seattle
  • Water quality--Washington (State)--Seattle
  • Water utilities--Washington (State)--Seattle
  • Corporate Names :
  • Everett (Wash.) Water Dept.
  • Seattle (Wash.). Dept. of Lighting and Water Works
  • Muckleshoot Indian Tribe of the Muckleshoot Reservation, Washington
  • Municipality of Metropolitan Seattle
  • Seattle (Wash.) Water Dept.
  • Tacoma (Wash.). Dept. of Public Utilities
  • Geographical Names :
  • Seattle (Wash.)