Snoqualmie Valley Historical Museum turns to social media to help identify historic family photos


The museum has a large following on Facebook, where they share photos of unidentified people in Snoqualmie Valley history daily.

NORTH BEND, Wash. – A Seattle woman donated three boxes of family photos and a tea set to the Snoqualmie Valley Historical Museum in North Bend.

The woman’s grandparents and great-uncles moved to the Preston area in the early 1900s. She ended up inheriting all of their photo collections.

According to museum staff, more than half of the donated photos are unidentified.

Museum staff took to social media to complete their work of determining the people in the photos. The the museum is very followed on Facebookto whom they share photos of unidentified people in Snoqualmie Valley history.

“We’re just happy to help preserve some of that history,” assistant director Christy Lake said.

Lake posts unidentified photos every day in hopes that community members will recognize someone in them.

“You can imagine how there can be a family member just looking for the great-grandmother and great-grandfather’s wedding photo,” Lake said.

The Museum recently received 3 boxes of photos from a family who lived in Preston at the turn of the century. Let’s know…

posted by Snoqualmie Valley Historical Museum on Thursday, October 6, 2022

Snoqualmie Valley Historical Society board treasurer Gardiner Vinnedge said identity is very important to people.

“Some people want things here because they just want to leave something permanently,” Vinnedge said.

The museum houses around 20,000 objects and around 80,000 photographs.

Lake said many of the photos in their possession were from before electricity came to the Snoqualmie Valley. She said that although the valley is home to the world’s first all-electric underground power station, which was opened in 1898, it took nearly two decades before the majority of the valley received electricity. Everything was sent to Seattle and Tacoma to operate electric railroads and industrial buildings.

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Patrick F. Williams