DYK: The Washington State Archives Building is Also a Bomb Shelter
From the AP (via The Seattle Times):
In the early 1960s, Washington opened an archives building to safely store the state’s most important documents. The building, constructed as a largely underground bunker and opened just a year after the Cuban missile crisis, served another purpose not widely publicized at the time: nuclear fallout shelter in case of attack.
Today, a series of tunnels built to evacuate state officials and staff to the safety of the bunker go largely unused or serve as utility tunnels for steam and electrical lines. But in that era of heightened fear, “the mood was hysteria,” said Jerry Handfield, state archivist since 2001.
Handfield learned about the history of the building during a tour after he was hired. Intrigued, he and a colleague starting hunting for old fallout supplies and discovered a few things, including a tin still filled with hard candy. Other items meant to reflect the time period – toilet paper still in its original packaging, medication and food – were obtained from the state military department.
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About Gary Price
Gary Price (email@example.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. He earned his MLIS degree from Wayne State University in Detroit. Price has won several awards including the SLA Innovations in Technology Award and Alumnus of the Year from the Wayne St. University Library and Information Science Program. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com. Gary is also the co-founder of infoDJ an innovation research consultancy supporting corporate product and business model teams with just-in-time fact and insight finding.