ERIC Number: ED344612
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991
Reference Count: N/A
The Role and Function of Presidential Libraries.
This paper identifies various elements of presidential libraries. The advantages and disadvantages of the libraries' centralization or decentralization are discussed, and some common misconceptions held by the public as to the role and function of presidential libraries are identified. Criticism and debate from the professional community about whether presidential libraries have degenerated into costly monuments rather than true archives are presented, and major presidential library contributions are reviewed. The geographic dispersion of the libraries and their impact upon, and ties with, the surrounding communities are considered. In addition, the impact of presidential foundations (e.g., the Jimmy Carter Foundation and the Lyndon Baines Johnson Foundation) and other foundations on the libraries is explored. The balance between the museum and archival functions, and the two separate clienteles who are attracted to these two roles are also described. Also identified are some common experiences shared by these libraries as they pass through their life-cycle: (1) the development/nascent stage; (2) the professional use/research stage; and (3) the mature library. The challenges faced by one such mature library, the Herbert Hoover Library, are outlined and the future of all presidential libraries is considered. (21 references) (MAB)
Publication Type: Reports - General
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Presidential Libraries