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Murkowski Making Progress Keeping Alaskan Historical Documents in Alaska

National Archivist Says Alaska Railroad Documents to Stay In-State, Senator’s Negotiations Result in Options Being Pursued

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Lisa Murkowski’s ongoing conversations with the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) about their proposal to shut down the Anchorage Archives and take the records to Seattle are beginning to reap results for concerned Alaskans. Though the federal records in question were presumed to be required to stay in NARA’s physical custody and be moved to the Lower 48 site, the Archivist of the United States tells Senator Murkowski he is willing to explore alternatives.

In response to Murkowski’s March 11th letter asking the Archivist of the United States to consider alternatives that would keep important Alaskan records in-state, he informed her through the attached letter that:

  • NARA has identified willing Alaska-based recipients for its microfilm records, which include Census, land, court, and immigration records, and
  • NARA is working with the State Archives, UAF, and UAA to identify other records of importance and determine which of those can remain in Alaska, and
  • NARA will uphold a prior agreement made with the Alaska Railroad and the State and donate all Alaska Railroad records to the State Archives.

“I thank the Archivist of the United States for working with Alaskan stakeholders and taking a closer look at the historical documents held at the Anchorage Archives to determine which can be kept in-state,” said Murkowski. “I look forward to continuing to work with him to keep our important documents within reach of Alaskans.

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