Virginia K. Gunby papers, 1957-2014

Overview of the Collection

Gunby, Virginia K.
Virginia K. Gunby papers
1957-2014 (inclusive)
1.92 cubic feet (2 boxes)
Collection Number
6283 (Accession No. 6283-001)
Papers of a prominent Seattleite with a primary focus on transportation services throughout the city.
University of Washington Libraries, Special Collections
Special Collections
University of Washington Libraries
Box 352900
Seattle, WA
Telephone: 2065431929
Fax: 2065431931
Access Restrictions

No restrictions on access.


Biographical NoteReturn to Top

Virginia K. Gunby has been a prominent civic leader in Seattle. Her focus has been on transportation services. In the 1960’s Gunby was appointed by Governor Dan Evans to the then State Highway Commission. In 1968 Elected Freeholders Lois North and Virginia Gunby helped write the King County Charter that granted home rule to King County. Gunby quickly became known as a civic leader as she was part of many committees such as in the King Country Freeholder and Charter Review Committees in 1971 and 1977.

Virginia Gunby served on the citizen oversight panel from 1997-2004, the panel independently monitors Sound Transit to make sure it meets its commitment to voters. In 2006 Gunby accepted the position of Transportation Committee chair in order to assist her community in opposing a design proposed by the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) in July 2006 for rebuilding State Route 520.

Virginia and freeway fighter Margaret Tunks were life-long collaborators. A March 1971 press conference promoted their joint position paper, “Transportation Policy, Financing and Administrative Changes: A Transit Agency for the Central Puget Sound Region.” In 1977, they coached incoming mayor-elect Charles Royer through “Transitional Transport Issues” with M. Darland, Prof. Jerry Schneider and David Sprague. In 1978, they partnered with John Boles for a series of statements and presentations on I-90 issues to Mayor Royer and the city council. Once off the highway commission, Virginia became active in 1979-80’s Transit 21 campaign in which Margaret was already working. Virginia was one of Margaret’s editors including Margaret’s last book, Seattle Citizens Against Freeways, Revised Edition.

Anne Rudd, of the Seattle Freeway Revolt Activists sorted and organized Gunby’s papers. As of 2017, Gunby had saved and organized over 200 file boxes as well as many shelf feet of personal and publicly available materials and publications. The collection was reduced to two boxes before being donated. Additionally, one box of records were integrated into the Seattle Freeway Revolt Activists Collection.

[some information provided by Anna Rudd]

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

This collection, narrowly focused on Ms. Gunby’s wide-ranging transportation-related activities and interests, includes personal notes and notations, often written on meeting agendas and handouts, correspondence, newsletters and flyers and some original cut-and-paste newsletter layouts plus articles and news clippings that cite Gunby. Materials are in chronological order, beginning with the earliest. The few exceptions include materials grouped into packets by Virginia which appear to have been (re)assembled to prepare new presentations and position papers on familiar topics. Some like materials which seemed more suited to a single folder than to be spread out based on date of creation have also been grouped together. Papers connected to her non-transportation activities and associations were not included with rare exceptions.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Restrictions on Use

Creator's copyrights transferred to the University of Washington Libraries Special Collections.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top

Acquisition Information

Donated by George C. Gunby

Related Materials

Related material can be found in the following collection: Seattle Freeway Revolt Activists collection

Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top


Container(s) Description Dates
1/1 List of items not retained 2019
1/2 Organization and Origin 2019
1/3 Biographies and Resumes 1973-2013
1/4-6 Newspaper Clippings 1968-2004
1/7 Lake Washington Bridge Location-Report by Stephen Chadwick 1957
1/8 Notes on Cities in the Motor Age by Wilfred Owen 1959
1/9 Newspaper article, map, and notes on Interstate 5 1961
1/10 Port of Seattle Study 1962
1/11 Report of the Metropolitan Transportation Committee 1962
1/12 Newspaper article and notes on Matthews Beach boat ramp 1963
1/13 Interview with John Porter of Puget Sound Governmental Conference 1964
1/14 Speech on Metropolitan Problems by Ira Heyman 1965
1/15 Reports on government and transportation in Seattle 1965
1/16 Booklets on King County Charter 1968
1/17 Reports on government and development in the Puget Sound region 1967
1/18 Reports and correspondence on air pollution and highway development 1968
1/19 Correspondence on environmental regulations and public transit 1969
1/20 Correspondence and reports on highway development in Seattle 1970
1/21 Correspondence and articles on highways and transit in Seattle 1971
1/22 Metropolitan Study Commission documents 1972
1/23 Reports on urban planning in Seattle 1973
1/24 Seattle 2000 Commission documents 1974
1/25 Washington State Highway Commission correspondence 1973
1/26 Seattle Freeholder and City Charter Reform 1974-1975
1/27-28 Washington State Highway Commission correspondence 1974
1/29 Alternatives for Washington 1974-1977
1/30-31 Correspondence and speeches on citizen involvement in transportation planning 1975
1/32 Correspondence regarding Interstate 90 construction 1976
1/33 Reports and correspondence on Interstate 90 1976-1979
1/34 Reports on King County Charter and transportation planning 1977
1/35-36 Charter Review Committee 1976-1977
1/37 Ad Hoc Seattle Transportation Advisory Group 1977
1/38 Correspondence and Reports on Interstate 90 1978
1/39-40 Washington State Highway Commission Correspondence 1979
1/41 Interstate 90 Policy Review Committee 1979
1/42 Seattle and Washington State Department of Transportation Budgets 1979
1/43 Correspondence regarding appointment to National Highway Commission 1980
1/44 Reports on transit in downtown Seattle 1981
1/45 Correspondence and reports on transportation funding 1982
1/46 Correspondence and reports on Seattle-area transportation projects 1983
1/47 Women's Transportation Seminar speech 1984
1/48 American Public Works Association Conference speech 1985
1/49 Washington State Department of Transportation Conference speeches 1986
1/50 Waterfront Streetcar Extension presentation notes 1987
1/51 "Vote No on Proposition #1"(expanding monorail) promotional mailing and stickers 2005
2/1 Correspondence on transportation in Seattle 1988
2/2 Presentations on transportation in the Puget Sound region 1989
2/3 Speeches on transportation 1990
2/4 Speeches and correspondence on land use in Seattle 1991
2/5 Speeches on public transit in Seattle 1992
2/6 Correspondence on regional transit 1993
2/7 Correspondence on land use in Washington 1994
2/8 Minutes of Puget Sound transit vote meetings 1995
2/9 League of Women Voters King County Governance Study 1996
2/10 1000 Friends of Washington administrative and promotional materials 1997
2/11 Correspondence on Municipal League Strategic Plan 1998
2/12 Sound Transit Citizen Oversight Panel reports 1999
2/13 Correspondence on Puget Sound transit 2000
2/14 Municipal League of King County correspondence 2001
2/15 Washington State League of Women Voters correspondence and notes 2002
2/16 Regional Transportation Improvement District reports 2003
2/17 Correspondence on the Seattle Monorail 2004
2/18 Correspondence on Sound Transit and the SR 520 Bridge 2005
2/19 Correspondence on the SR 520 Bridge replacement 2006
2/20 Newspaper articles on SR 520 Bridge replacement 2007
2/21 Correspondence from Jorgen Bader on the SR 520 Bridge replacement 2007-2008
2/22 Correspondence with community groups on the SR 520 Bridge replacement 2008
2/23 Correspondence from Jorgen Bader on the SR 520 Bridge replacement 2012
2/24 Correspondence on 35th Avenue NE bike lanes 2013-2014

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

Subject Terms

  • City planning--Washington (State)--Seattle
  • Express highways--Washington (State)
  • Local government and environmental policy--Washington (State)--Seattle
  • Personal Papers/Corporate Records (University of Washington)
  • Transportation--Washington (State)--Puget Sound
  • Transportation--Washington (State)--Seattle

Personal Names

  • Bader, Jorgen, 1938---Correspondence
  • Gunby, Virginia K., 1931---Archives

Corporate Names

  • 1000 Friends of Washington--Archives
  • Alternatives for Washington (Organization)--Archives
  • Central Puget Sound Regional Transit Authority (Wash.). Citizen Oversight Panel--Archives
  • King County (Wash.). Charter Review Committee--Archives
  • King County (Wash.). Freeholder Commission--Archives
  • League of Women Voters of Washington--Archives
  • Metropolitan Transportation Committee (King County, Wash.)--Archives
  • Municipal League of King County--Correspondence
  • Port of Seattle--Archives
  • Seattle 2000 Commission--Archives
  • Seattle Monorail Project--Correspondence
  • Washington State Highway Commission--Archives
  • Women's Transportation Seminar--Archives

Geographical Names

  • Interstate 5--Design and construction
  • Interstate 90--Design and construction
  • Matthews Beach Park (Seattle, Wash.)
  • Washington State Route 520 (Wash.)--Design and construction

Other Creators

  • Personal Names
    • Heyman, Ira Michael, 1930-2011 (author)