Provisional and Territorial Records Guide

Using this Guide

This Guide provides complete descriptions of the records of the Territorial and Provisional Governments in the custody of the Oregon State Archives. It brings together descriptions of all holdings from the Provisional and Territorial periods. In defining the duties and tracing the development of offices and public bodies, the administrative histories included in the Guide integrate information which is not available from any other single source.

The Guide is divided into three sections:

  • records of the Provisional and Territorial Governments;
  • records of Oregon counties that were created before statehood; and
  • records of counties that became part of Washington Territory when it was formed in 1853.

Within each section the user will find agency or county administrative histories which describe the creation, development, and functions of government during the Provisional and Territorial periods. The entries are arranged alphabetically by county or office of origin. These are followed by series descriptions arranged alphabetically by title.

Series descriptions follow USMARC-AMC standards and include the series title, range of dates, volume in cubic feet, and a brief description of the information contained in the series. Each description is identified by a series number. In addition, descriptions include a microfilm reel number and a database record number. A sample is shown below:

Diagram of a typical record description

For additional assistance with the series descriptions or the microfilm, or to order a printed version of the guide for $15.00, contact a Reference Archivist at the Oregon State Archives, (503) 373-0701.

Click here for the Microfilm Reel Index to the Guide.



State Archives • 800 Summer St. NE • Salem, OR 97310

Phone: 503-373-0701 • Fax: 503-378-4118 • reference.archives@state.or.us