Campus News

Russell Library receives grant to process political records

UGA’s Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies has received a grant of up to $58,777 from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission to process the records of the Democratic Party of Georgia and the Georgia Republican Party and make them available to researchers for the first time.

As the official repository of the records of the GAGOP Papers (1981-1997) and the Georgia Democrats (1975-2008), the Russell Library’s goal is to provide access to these papers to fill in research gaps and contextualize collections already available for research; provide an in-depth resource for analyzing the transition of Georgia from a “one-party” state that favored Democrats to a state that is heavily weighted toward the Republican Party; and highlight the influence of national party platforms and agendas at the local and state levels.

The records also document the increase in African-American voters, the development of urban areas, the influx of new minority groups and participation of women as well as how those factors influenced the state’s political landscape. The GAGOP files include a large quantity of demographic statistical data compiled by their ORVIS system, a targeting tool to assist in choosing and supporting the most “winnable” candidates. This statistical data and conclusions that can be drawn from it can be used by political scientists to document political trends in party platforms.