Collections

Contact Information

Coast Salish Native American woven hat, ca. 1880The Renton History Museum holds collections donated from 1966 to the present. The museum's primary collection consists of objects, photographs, and archival materials relating to greater Renton's industrial, civic, and cultural past. The objects in the collection range in age from prehistoric times to the present day, and include archaeological, ethnological, and historical objects.

A selection of the Renton History Museum's photographs are available for viewing via the University of Washington Libraries Digital Collections. The site features about 500 images from the museum's collection of over 18,000 images.

Copies of any of the museum's photos can be purchased by contacting the museum.

Donations

Have an artifact that would be appropriate for donation to the museum?

The museum is currently collecting artifacts that have a strong connection to Renton's rich history and help tell Renton's story.

If this description fits your artifact, read the Frequently Asked Questions about artifact donation and complete the Artifact Donation form.

Wish List

Charles L. Custer with his Steiff dog, 1913The museum is always on the lookout for items to fill gaps in our collection and is especially interested in the following:

  • Anything related to early business and industry in Renton
  • Anything related to "The Loop"
  • Diaries, letters, and other first person accounts of Renton's history
  • Photographs, especially from World War II to the present day

Items no longer accepted

The Renton Historical Society has been collecting since 1966 and has already acquired tens of thousands of objects, ephemera, and photographs. Storage space is limited and some items are no longer accepted. Including:

  • Historical objects with no connection or significance to Renton history
  • Dolls
  • Encyclopedias
  • Cabinet radios
  • Kerosene lamps
  • Knickknacks
  • Phonographs and phonograph records
  • Pianos and organs
  • Pressure cookers
  • Tools (carpentry and masonry)
  • Typewriters
  • World War II uniforms

Need help preserving or conserving a family heirloom?

Museum staff can help answer questions and by appointment provide a free half-hour consultation on preservation and how to correctly store family heirlooms so that they will last for future generations.

Contact the American Institute for Conservation of Historical and Artistic Works for more information. The AIC has a list of specialized conservators.

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