The Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies is a department within the University of Georgia Libraries that reports to the University Librarian and serves as a center for research and study of the modern American political system. Established in 1974 through the efforts of the Richard B. Russell Foundation, Inc., the Georgia General Assembly, and the University System of Georgia Board of Regents, the Library’s original mission was to collect and preserve materials that document the life and career of the late Richard B. Russell, United States Senator from Georgia from 1933 to 1971. With particular emphasis on the role of Georgia and the U. S. Congress, current collection development and programming focus on the dynamic relationship of politics, policy, and culture—generated wherever public interest intersects with government. The breadth and depth of Russell Library’s collections provide an interconnected framework of perspectives and experiences for understanding the increasingly diverse people, events, and ideas shaping Georgia’s political landscape.
The Russell Library pursues alliances and opportunities for collaboration with individuals and organizations that advance its mission. The Library is a founding member of the Association of Centers for the Study of Congress and a primary partner and official repository for the Foot Soldier Project for Civil Rights Studies, a collaborative project dedicated to documenting and chronicling the activity and perceptions of lesser known participants in the civil rights movement in Georgia. The Russell Library is also dedicated to developing and presenting public programming and educational materials that facilitate and encourage research, raise public awareness of the Library and its collections and services, and provide learning opportunities for the communities it serves.