Unsung Foot Soldiers   marchers
The Foot Soldier Project for Civil Rights Studies
foot soldiers

About the Project: Russell Library Partnership

Russell LibraryThe Foot Soldier Project has partnered with the Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies at the University of Georgia to develop a permanent archival collection focusing on civil rights, largely comprised of research materials developed through the project. These archival materials include historical papers, photographs, artifacts, intellectual and social histories, and documentaries with a focus on unsung persons and related events in the movement for civil rights and social justice. By providing a full spectrum of documentation on civil rights experiences, this initiative brings together a vast array of resources in one repository with the aim of fostering interdisciplinary collaboration among scholars, archivists, and the community.

The Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies serves as a center for research and study of the modern American political system with particular emphasis on the role of the U. S. Congress and on the dynamic relationships of local, state, national, and international politics. The mission of the Russell Library is to collect, preserve, and make available archival and manuscript materials of individuals and organizations that fully document Georgia’s modern (1900-present) political history, policy, and culture. A part of this mission is to document the life and career of Senator Richard B. Russell, the Library's namesake. 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.

The Civil Rights Movement is an important subject strength of the Russell Library. The Library documents the movement from a variety of vantage points including that of elected officials, judges, activists, journalists, constituents. Materials in the collections include correspondence, speeches, legislation, photographs, films, sound recordings oral history interviews (audio visual materials and transcripts), artifacts, pamphlets and tracts that document both opposition to and support of the civil rights movement. In addition to the Foot Soldier Project Collection, some of the Russell Library's collections with particularly significant documentation of the civil rights era include the Richard B. Russell Jr. Collection, the Herman E. Talmadge Collection, the Clifford Baldowski Editorial Cartoon Collection, the Ernest Vandiver Papers, the Walter Lundy Files, Guthrie vs. Evans: Georgia State Prison Reform Records, 1972-1983, and the Lewis R. Morgan Papers. The Library also has many collections that document issues related to diversity and equity issues in the post civil rights period. Among them include: the Michael Thurmond Papers, American Civil Liberties Union of Georgia Records, the Melba R. Williams Personal Papers, and the Maxine S. Goldstein Papers. More information about Russell Library collections related to the civil rights era as well as to other aspects of Georgia's modern history is available on the Library's website.