Hand drawn hummingbirds.By Jim Scott

Norlin Library, already host to a seemingly endless number of books, is now home to a very valuable collection. It’s been designated the nation’s first official preservation steward library through the U.S. Government Publishing Office. Kate Tallman, acting head of Norlin Library’s Government Information Library, says the university has pledged to preserve the U.S. Congressional Serial Set (House and Senate documents and reports), the Congressional Record and U.S. congressional hearings from the early 1800s on.

That includes everything from the investigation into the Challenger disaster and the 9/11 Commission, to official accounts of the early government exploration of the West that include stunning drawings of landscapes, flora and fauna. In fact, says Tallman, the collection includes anything that has happened in U.S. history that “has bubbled up” to the congressional level. And, it’s all accessible to the public, either digitally or through the physical documents. Grab those reading glasses.