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The Black Heritage Society of Washington State, Inc. was first proposed in 1977 and became incorporated in 1982.  Preserving, collecting and sharing the history of African Americans in Washington State are the priorities that shape the BHS mission.

BHS collections are a protected resource and public asset that archives the past and present to inform the future. The Society recognizes the importance for documenting the culture and heritage of Black people statewide, and upholds the notion that Washington State history is an essential link in the broader narrative that defines the story of our nation.

Preserving our past ~ Informing our future

The Black Heritage Society of Washington State, Inc.
is a registered 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization.

Ensuring the Safety of Our Community, Visitors, and Volunteers
In accordance with Washington State and King County public health authorities’ recommendations regarding the COVID-19 crisis, BHS archives is temporarily closed to the public.  We are still responding to inquires and requests via our website contact form. Until the time when BHS can resume visitor services, continue to visit the website, sign up for the E-News, and stay safe.   


Jacqueline E. A. Lawson
(April 4, 1928 – July 15, 2021)

With heavy hearts we sadly share the passing of BHS co-founding member,
Jacqueline Eva Alexander Lawson.

Our mentor, guide, and advocate. We will cherish the memory of Jackie and forever uphold her legacy.



Central District History and Footprint
The Soul Pole at Douglass-Truth Library
Preservation Effort and Remembering the Artists
Read the story.

Where Did the Soul Go? by Rayna Mathis
Gregory Q. X, Brenda Davis, Larry Gordon, Gregory Jackson, Cindy Jones, Gaylord Young
If you have memory of this project and/or artists, please reach out to: or 

BHS enlists community stakeholders to partner with
The Washington Trust for Historic Preservation
Rooted in History:

African American Heritage Sites Tour
King County/Central District

Thank you Converge Media for the video introduction.

Preview the Tour at WA Trust

Project funded in part by

      Edwin T. Pratt_1955_ Pratt Legacy Collection_Property of BHS

Remembering Edwin T. Pratt  
In 2019, BHS was the recipient of the Edwin T. Pratt Legacy Collection that contains family photos, ephemera, documents and letters that give insight into the life and times of Edwin T. Pratt and his wife, Bettye. BHS manages the collection as a public asset. More than 400 items were digitized in partnership with VisualCognetics and funded by King County 4Culture
Contact BHS for access to the collection.
 Read More About Edwin T. Pratt
Below is a StoryCorps recording between Miriam Pratt and Jean Soliz.



BHS Affiliations