About the Recorder's Office
The Recorder's Office records and provides access to over 350 types of documents. We do not interpret documents or check the documents for accuracy (other than compliance with Washington State RCWs concerning formatting). We do answer basic questions about how to find documents and assist people in doing so.
Between 1854 and 1969, the King County Auditor maintained all documents submitted for public record. In 1969, the recording functions of the County Auditor were taken over by the newly formed Recorder's Office. Recorded documents include real estate transactions, marriage records and many others. Over the years, the method of recording these documents has evolved from a system of manual transcription in ledger books to digitally scanning and indexing the documents presented for recording.
Notice Pertaining to Recorded Documents
All documents that have not been imaged (which includes most documents recorded prior to August 1, 1991) can only be acquired at the King County Archives. Archives provides access to all recorded documents, including digitally imaged documents and older microfilmed documents. Images of some recorded documents can be accessed online through Records Search, and also at public service terminals at the Recorder's Office in downtown Seattle.