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US congressman Harry Mitchell donates papers to ASU Libraries

April 30, 2012

U.S. congressman Harry Mitchell and his staff have been working with the ASU Libraries to preserve the history of Mitchell’s work in the U.S. House of Representatives.

In early 2011 Rob Spindler, the university archivist for ASU, worked with Mitchell's staff to acquire 19 boxes of archives from the Scottsdale and Washington, D.C., offices. The materials include electronic and paper correspondence, reports, photographs and memorabilia documenting Mitchell’s service from 2007 to 2011.

Spindler also worked with Chris Quigley, Mitchell's director of administration, and the ASU Libraries’ Library Channel staff to organize an oral history project, in which Mitchell and six key staff were interviewed by ASU Professor Emeritus David Berman.

“We knew that staff interviews would be very helpful in developing a deeper and more useful historical record of Congressman Mitchell’s work, and The Library Channel had the skills and facilities available to help us do just that,” said Spindler. Three of those interviews were taped in the historic Senator Carl Hayden Office in Hayden Library.

The Mitchell Oral History Project videos are online via the ASU Digital Repository.

Mitchell’s career and the donation of his papers were celebrated in a special reception for the congressman, his family, his staff and close friends, April 19. Phil Konomos, associate university librarian, read a congratulatory letter from ASU President Michael Crow at the reception. Mitchell is the 11th member of Congress to donate his papers to the Arizona Collection at ASU Libraries.

Photos from the reception for Harry Mitchell are posted online.

The preliminary inventory of the Harry Mitchell Papers is now online and the papers are now available for research by appointment. To make an appointment, please call 480-965-4932 or email

Media contact:
Rob Spindler