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Originally published in The Seattle Times, June 29, 1983

By Herb Balanger
Times South bureau

The Lester train depot was 52 years old when this picture was taken in 1940 for the King County tax assessor’s office. It is one of thousands being processed and filed by the Regional State Archives center In Burien. Numbers at the left identify when the picture was taken (June 19, 1940) and the assessor’s file number; numbers at the bottom indicate section, township and page in the assessor’s log book and tax lot number; Depot #9 indicates it is the building number In the group belonging to the railroad.

The Lester train depot was 52 years old when this picture was taken in 1940 for the King County tax assessor’s office. It is one of thousands being processed and filed by the Regional State Archives center in Burien. Numbers at the left identify when the picture was taken (June 19, 1940) and the assessor’s file number; numbers at the bottom indicate section, township and page in the assessor’s log book and tax lot number; Depot #9 indicates it is the building number in the group belonging to the railroad.

A group of volunteers from the Association of King County Historical Organizations has been hard at work since March trying to preserve what Mike Saunders, archivist, considers “the most comprehensive countywide local history photo collection in the state.”

The work, being done at the Regional State Archives in the former Sunset Junior High School in Highline, will probably be completed in September. Saunders said.

The job involves going through 70,000 to 90,000 negatives from the county assessor’s files dating from a Works Progress Administration project of 1936–1940, in which all the real property in the county was inventoried. Additional photos were taken through 1973 updating the changes to the buildings. (more…)

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