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Celebrating International Women’s Day: a look back at the King County Women’s Program

Announcing a new online exhibit: The King County Women’s Program: The First Years (1978-1985)


Clipping from a south King County newspaper covering the Women’s Program’s “Displaced Homemaker” job training program, 1979.  Women’s Program Coordinator Files, Series 1901, Box 2, Folder 10.

Archives staff recently completed processing a collection of records documenting the establishment and evolution of the King County Women’s Program. A new online exhibit, The King County Women’s Program: The First Years (1978-1985) highlights these records.

The exhibit begins with a timeline that places the Women’s Program in the context of the national and international women’s movement and second-wave feminism.

In the program records, we see both local support and local objection to the women’s movement. Yet the services provided by the program were more practical than political, and they addressed the needs of women throughout the County.

Earliest priorities centered on women’s self-image, confidence and assertiveness; jobs, training, and vocational planning; child care; dissemination of community resource information; and programs for women of color. Over time, priorities shifted to providing specific, targeted programs intended to increase the safety of women victims of domestic violence and/or sexual assault.

Today, the King County Women’s Advisory Board continues to make recommendations to the County Council and the County Executive to ensure that the needs, rights and well-being of women are taken into account by King County government.

About the Archives’ Online Exhibits

Online exhibits allow us to provide broad public access to the King County Archives collection. Relatively few people will ever visit an archives, but we can make these public assets, the County’s historical records, more widely accessible by sharing some of the collection online. We also encourage researchers to visit us and see the records in person.

Check out more exhibits on our Web site at

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