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Historic Agriculture and Land Use Resources

Assistance with finding historical agricultural information

COVID-19 Updates

Please note: while we try to keep our guides as up-to-date as possible, the most current information on WSU Pullman Library operations and Services can be found at the links below:



Combined thresher and harvester at work near Colfax, Washington, circa 1908. Sprouse & Son, Importers and Publishers, Tacoma, Wash. Washington Rural Heritage Collection.

This guide is intended to assist you with locating many different types of historical resources pertaining to how people and cultures have utilized the Palouse and Inland Northwest over thousands of years. Some resources you may find include historic maps, photographs and drawings, first-hand accounts, early research publications, and much more.

Although most of the resources listed on this guide focus on local history, some do explore a broader context of land use. Land use, generally speaking, involves the utilization and modification of a natural environment into a managed environment suitable for agriculture, community habitation, or other organized uses.

You can locate many fantastic historic resources both on campus and online.

Washington State University is located on the ceded lands of the Nez Perce Tribe and the traditional homelands of the Palus Band of Indians. We acknowledge their presence here since time immemorial and recognize their continuing connection to the land, to the water, and to their ancestors.

Great Books About Historic Agriculture and Land Use

Stories of early pioneers in Whitman CountyWashington by Fred Yoder (193?). A fascinating collection of primary source accounts from individuals who lived in Whitman County, Washington during the second half of the 19th Century. You can find several copies of this resource within the WSU Libraries.

WSU Libraries, PO Box 645610, Washington State University, Pullman WA 99164-5610, 509-335-9671, Contact Us