NASS Resolution in Support of Efforts to Preserve American Historical Record

WHEREAS, the historical records housed in archives around the United States protect our rights as American citizens, hold government accountable, and educate, inform, and ensure the cultural heritage of this country; and

WHEREAS, much of the American record—evidence of births, education, marriage, property owned, obligations satisfied, and criminal conduct—is held at the state and local levels; and

WHEREAS, the preservation, access, and use of the historical records held in states, regions, and localities around the country is essential to sustaining the information needs of government officials, lawyers, scholars, teachers, students, genealogists, business people, and a wide range of users; and

WHEREAS, our nation has recognized the importance of history through its support of national institutions such as the National Archives, Library of Congress, and the Smithsonian Institution; and

WHEREAS, the existing federal support is not adequate for reaching the rest of our nation’s archives being held in government agencies, state and local historical societies, archives, and library history collections;

THEREFORE, NOW BE IT RESOLVED THAT the National Association of Secretaries of State supports efforts to establish a formal program at the national level to develop programs and practices in each state and territory to ensure the historical records of this country receive the attention and use necessary to continue to document our heritage and support our democracy.

Adopted the 16th day of July, 2018 in Philadelphia, PA
Adopted July 2008; Amended and reaffirmed July 2013; Reaffirmed July 2018

EXPIRES: Summer 2023