NARA Seattle Closure Updates

April 2022

National Archives at Seattle is re-opening!

The research room at the National Archives at Seattle is open on a limited basis, by appointment only, Monday thru Friday, 9:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m.

 Research visits are by appointment only and require a virtual consultation prior to the onsite visit.  Email to request an appointment using Request for Appointment – [your name] in the subject line.

Or call 206-336-5132 for a virtual consultation appointment prior to requesting a research visit.

Researchers should monitor the NARA web page for details and updates, as the situation can change quickly.  To plan your visit, see

Trish at NARA-Seattle

March 24, 2021
Northwest Lawmakers Introduce Bill to Halt Sale of Seattle Federal Archives Building

Senator Murray led Senators Cantwell, Wyden, Merkley, and Murkowski to introduce the bill, which would stop the facility from being sold before local Tribes are consulted 

March 11, 2021
Bipartisan coalition pens letter calling for end to effort to close Seattle National Archives by Feliks Banel

A bipartisan group of more than 20 U.S. senators and representatives from Washington, Oregon, Idaho and Alaska put their signatures on a letter asking the federal government to officially give up its effort to sell the Seattle branch of the National Archives.

February 12, 2021
Judge Blocks Sale and Closure of National Archives in Seattle

Ferguson, working with a coalition of regional tribes, community organizations, the City of Seattle and Oregon’s Attorney General, asked the court in January to enjoin, or block, the sale while the litigation continues. The coalition filed nearly 600 pages of declarations from 79 individuals.

February 11, 2021
National Archives Closure Hearing – Friday, 2/12/2021

Legal Battle to Keep National Archives in Seattle

January 19, 2021
Attorney General Ferguson held a virtual public meeting to allow affected individuals and organizations to testify about the closure of the National Archives building in Seattle. The public meeting was attended by more than 300 people over Zoom and by phone. Testimony was given by many Native Americans, Asian Americans, genealogists, medical and historical researchers, public officials, and local and regional organizations.

January 8, 2021
79 Individuals Share Their Personal Stories as Part of Attorney General-Led Coalition’s Motion to Halt National Archives’ Sale
Tribes, community groups push back against “move toward cultural erasure”

January 4, 2021
AG Ferguson Announces Coalition Lawsuit to Save National Archives

29 tribes, tribal entities and communities, Oregon and 9 historic preservation and community groups join the lawsuit

All Declarations

SEATTLE — Attorney General Bob Ferguson announced today that his office filed a lawsuit against the federal government for illegally proceeding with the sale of the National Archives and Records Administration’s (NARA) building in Seattle. 

December 29, 2020
AG Ferguson to Host Remote Public Comment Meeting on National Archives Facility and Records
Feds did not solicit input in the Pacific Northwest before deciding to sell the building and move the region’s records

SEATTLE — Attorney General Bob Ferguson today announced he will host a remote public meeting on Tuesday, Jan. 19, 2021, so the public can share their comments on plans by the federal government to sell Seattle’s National Archives building and move the records thousands of miles away.

December 4, 2020 Press Release

December 4, 2020
BREAKING news per Feliks Banel at KIRO Radio and MyNorthwest :
Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson will file suit against the Trump Administration to halt the “expedited” sale of the Seattle facility of the National Archives. Based on a decision quietly made by the esoteric federal agency called the Public Buildings Reform Board, sale of the building could now happen as soon as January 2021. The decision to sell the building in the first place lacked transparency and was made without required public and stakeholder input.

August 17, 2020
Washington State AG Ferguson files federal lawsuits against three agencies failing to produce records
Washington State Office of Attorney General Bob Ferguson, News Release, August 17, 2020

August 2, 2020 Update
“Despite pleas, it looks like National Archives in Seattle still set to close” Erik Lacitis, Seattle Times, August 2, 2020

July 2020 Updates:

The National Archives at Seattle is still closed because of COVID-19.  I will let you know when it reopens.

“Fate of Seattle National Archives facility still in limbo,” by Feliks Banel, 10 July 2020, online publication of

March 24, 2020 Update on the closure of the National Archives at Seattle

February 21, 2020 Summary of Information on the Closure of the National Archives at Seattle