Library seeks cataloguer for Dorpat collection

Deadline to apply for two-year, full-time position is this Sunday

By Clay Eals

Hear ye, hear ye, hear ye … the voice of the people is calling.

Portions of Paul Dorpat’s collection as previously stored in his basement. (KOMO-TV)

The vast collection of famed Seattle historian and “Now & Then” column founder Paul Dorpat went to Seattle Public Library three years ago, and there’s good news — the library is seeking applications from those who would like to catalogue it for public use.

The formal name for the paid, open position is “Coordinating Library Technician (Project Archivist).” It’s a full-time job, temporary but lasting two years, and pays $28.84-$34.93 an hour. The deadline for applications is 5 p.m. this Sunday, May 14, 2023.

Among the qualifications for the job is a required minimum of three years of professional experience working in an archive or manuscripts repository.

Here is the link to find out more. Please spread the word far and wide!

Paul Dorpat, 2022. (Clay Eals)

Paul donated his collection, numbering more than 300,000 photo prints, slides, negatives, videos and other materials, to the library with the understanding that citizens one day would be able to access the full collection free of charge. Underlying the donation is his hope to inspire others throughout the region to likewise share their own local photos, films and ephemera—his version of “vox populi,” the voice of the people.

You can see a KIRO-TV story on Seattle Public Library’s acceptance of Paul’s collection in 2020 at this link.

Sean Lanksbury, the library’s Special Collections services manager, is delighted that the library is able to take this tangible step forward. For more information, he can be reached at 206-386-4610 or

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