Manuscript museum showcases original and rare artifacts

31 03 2009

Now that I am officially back at school from spring break, friends are asking, “So, what did you do over break?”

“Oh, nothing much – hung out with friends, watched a movie…and looked at some of the most important historical documents in our lifetime.”

Okay, okay, so maybe the letter written by Noah Webster, The Declaration of Allegiance of all the Native Tribes of America and Helen Keller‘s handwritten note weren’t  the original documents, but it was still cool to learn about them nonetheless.

The Karpeles Manuscript Library holds the largest private collection of original manuscripts in the world and little ol’ Tacoma, Wash. is one of 10 cities in the world to house some of them. (See a map).

Now, the museum in Tacoma was no Met., but I was surprised Tacoma would house a museum such as this.

Tom Jutilla, the director of Karpeles’ Tacoma site, was kind enough to show and explain the significance of many of the manuscripts showcased (even disclosing a mishap involving him accidentally dropping the original book dropped by a  famous scientist).

All the documents he showed were copies but the museum stores the actual originals somewhere in the building.

Pictures below:




2 responses

1 10 2009
Amber Hartfiel

Hi I am an old friend of Tom Jutilla’s. My mom’s name is Kim. I was wondering if you could give him my information and see if he can get a hold of me. I have been trying to get a hold of him and didn’t know how to. Please, if possible give him my email address it is

Thank you,

Amber Jones used to be Hartfiel

2 10 2009
Yong Kyle Kim

I do not have a way to get a hold of him. I would try calling the phone number of the museum to reach him. If you live in the area, you can always swing by the place.

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