The landscape of hard-to-find books has changed a lot since the Internet came along. Some titles remain rare or expensive, but in effect nothing is hard to find. The networks of used book stores such as Abebooks.com can turn up almost anything. And a surprising number of older, out of copyright titles can be found and printed off the Web (though printing on 8.5x11 paper and then trying to get the printouts bound does not turn out beautiful books, but it's the content that counts.)
A few examples:
- We were able to buy a used copy of a 1972 edition of Frances Densmore's 1939 book, Nootka and Quileute Music, and an original (extremely fragile) copy of Erna Gunther's 1928 A further analysis of the first salmon ceremony.
- From the Washington State Libary's Classics in Washington History page we were able to print copies of James Gilchrist Swan's The Indians of Cape Flattery, at the entrance to the Strait of Fuca, Washington Territory (1868) and George Gibbs's Alphabetical Vocabularies of the Clallam and Lummi (1863).
- From Google Books you can often download and print whole books, provided they are already out of copyright. The Twana, Chemakum & Klallam Indians of Washington Territory by Myron Eels (1886) comes from Miscellaneous papers relating to anthropology. From the Smithsonian report for 1886-'87. Next we will be printing at least three major papers from University of Washington Publications in Anthropology, also free from books.google.com: T. T. Waterman, The Whaling Equipment of the Makah Indians, Erna Gunther, Klallam Folk Tales (1925), and Erna Gunther, Klallam Ethnography (1927).
If you know of other important texts the library should have, please let us know, and we will work on getting hold of them one way or another.