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Department of Education and Early Development Alaska State Libraries, Archives, and Museums

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Libraries, Archives, & Museums: Home

The Division of Libraries, Archives and Museums:

  • Provides access to government information for state agencies and other researchers;
  • Collects, organizes, preserves, and makes accessible materials that document the history of Alaska; and
  • Promotes the development of libraries, archives and museums statewide for the benefit of all Alaskans.

Congress passed an act establishing the Alaska Historical Library and Museum for the District of Alaska on June 6, 1900. The purpose of the Museum and Historical Library was to collect, preserve and provide access to objects, laws, and papers from the Territory. The Legislature established the Alaska State Library in 1955 to provide reference library service to Territorial and other public officials and to cooperate with other libraries to increase effectiveness and reduce duplication. The Legislature established the Alaska State Archives in 1970, which opened its doors to the public in 1972. The Sheldon Jackson Museum, founded in 1888 to house an exceptional collection of Alaska Native ethnographic material gathered by Presbyterian missionary Rev. Dr. Sheldon Jackson, was purchased by the State of Alaska in 1985.