The Seattle Public Library

Your Account | Print-Friendly

January 18, 2018

About the Library

Library News Releases

Header Image

Library News Release

Release Date: 01/05/2018

New Digital Collection at The Seattle Public Library: Seattle's 'Town Crier' Newspaper


As part of The Seattle Public Library's commitment to preserving and sharing Seattle's culture and history, we've put over 1,200 issues of The Town Crier on the Library's website.


The Town Crier was a weekly magazine focusing on Seattle's news, arts and culture between 1910 and 1938. Historic details fill the newspaper's ads and articles -- here are some of the gems you'll find:


  • an early "photoplay" company's film screenings and claim to be "absolutely fire proof"
  • listings for batik and ukulele lessons
  • tales of shrieking suffragettes
  • a "pome" lampooning government bureaucrats
  • hospital scandals
  • local mustache styles
  • hotel menus
  • jokes
  • opinion pieces on male and female smoking habits
  • photos, paintings and sketches by local artists


And the more things change, the more they stay the same. Even back in 1922, locals were lamenting Seattle's rapid growth. "As time goes on much of the Seattle that we who have been here long love so well will of necessity disappear. Already the easily accessible paths... have been replaced by miles of cottages and paved streets; the old huge maples down town are gone, and with them... open spaces where grass grew and the cows pastured..." (The Town Crier, v.17, no.50, Dec. 16, 1922, pg. 54)


To help you locate articles more easily, we've created a subject list with more than 1,700 subject headings ranging from hatpins to Hooverville. We've also transcribed the original card file index, which lists additional articles on art and artists. You can also try your own keywords - the newspaper's text is fully searchable.

For more information on The Town Crier collection, visit the collection online, call the Library at 206-386-4636 or Ask a Librarian.

For more information contact:

Andra Addison, communications director

< Back To Index