Skip to main content

U.S. presidential papers

General resources

The best starting point for finding presidential papers is the American National Biography online. In this guide, the entry for each president is linked directly to ANB (note, however, that this is a licensed resource for Princeton only; if you are at another academic institution, ask a librarian if you have access to it.) Look at the end of the ANB entry for information about presidential papers, published editions of the writings of that president, and recommended biographies. ANB also has links to the presidential libraries that house the personal papers of each president since FDR.

A compilation of the messages and papers of the presidents, 1789-1907. James D. Richardson. [New York]: Bureau of National Literature and Art, 1908, c1897.
Firestone J81 .U577 1908; also online at http://www.heinonline.org/HOL/Index?index=presidents/nsmpp&collection=presidents in a version that covers 1789-1929.

Public papers of the presidents of the United States. Washington: Federal Register Division, National Archives and Records Service, General Services Administration, 1929-2005, 2009
Firestone Library: Non Circulating (Fnc): J80 .U577; also online at http://www.heinonline.org/HOL/Index?index=presidents/pubpapers&collection=presidents. (For FDR see http://www.heinonline.org/HOL/Index?index=presidents/ppafdr&collection=presidents.)

Weekly compilation of Presidential documents.Washington, D.C. : Office of the Federal Register, National Archives and Records Service, General Services Administration, 1965-
Firestone J80 .W445; also online at http://heinonline.org/HOL/Index?index=presdocs/presdocs&collection=presidents and, for issues after 1995, in several other databases.

Executive Orders and Presidential Proclamations (1789-present) in ProQuest Congressional

Executive Branch Documents (1789-1939) in ProQuest Congressional

Presidential Proclamations Project

American Presidency Project

Records of the presidency: presidential papers and libraries from Washington to Reagan. Frank L. Schick, with Renee Schick and Mark Carroll. Phoenix: Oryx Press, 1989.
Firestone Library (F) CD3029.82 .S35 1989

How to research the presidency. Fenton S. Martin, Robert U. Goehlert. Washington, D.C.: Congressional Quarterly, c1996.
Firestone Library (F) Z1249.P7 M365 1996

National Security Files

The presidential National Security Files are a key resource for research on U.S. foreign policy and the presidency. They are arranged by administration and geographically. The series begins with the Eisenhower administration, but there is similar material in the microfilm set, President Harry S Truman’s office files, 1945-1953. Most are now available online in History Vault. See also National Security Council  in Twentieth Century U.S. foreign affairs

  • Dwight D. Eisenhower national security files, 1953-1961 [microform]  MICROFILM 11972 -- printed guide at Firestone Microforms E835 .D88 2005
  • John F. Kennedy National Security Files, 1961-1963 [electronic resource] : Africa.
  • John F. Kennedy National Security Files, 1961-1963 [electronic resource] : Africa, First Supplement.
  • John F. Kennedy National Security Files, 1961-1963 [electronic resource] : Asia and the Pacific.
  • John F. Kennedy National Security Files, 1961-1963 [electronic resource] : Asia and the Pacific, First Supplement.
  • John F. Kennedy National Security Files, 1961-1963 [electronic resource] : Latin America.
  • John F. Kennedy National Security Files, 1961-1963 [electronic resource] : Latin America, First Supplement.
  • John F. Kennedy National Security Files, 1961-1963 [electronic resource] : Latin America, First Supplement : Cuba.
  • John F. Kennedy National Security Files, 1961-1963 [electronic resource] : The Middle East.
  • John F. Kennedy National Security Files, 1961-1963 [electronic resource] : The Middle East, First Supplement.
  • John F. Kennedy National Security Files, 1961-1963 [electronic resource] : U.S.S.R. and Eastern Europe.
  • John F. Kennedy National Security Files, 1961-1963 [electronic resource] : U.S.S.R. and Eastern Europe, First Supplement.
  • John F. Kennedy National Security Files, 1961-1963 [electronic resource] : Vietnam.
  • John F. Kennedy National Security Files, 1961-1963 [electronic resource] : Vietnam, First Supplement.
  • John F. Kennedy National Security Files, 1961-1963 [electronic resource] : Western Europe.
  • John F. Kennedy National Security Files, 1961-1963 [electronic resource] : Western Europe, First Supplement.
  • Lyndon B. Johnson National Security Files, 1963-1969 [electronic resource] : Africa.
  • Lyndon B. Johnson National Security Files, 1963-1969 [electronic resource] : Agency File.
  • Lyndon B. Johnson National Security Files, 1963-1969 [electronic resource] : Asia and the Pacific.
  • Lyndon B. Johnson National Security Files, 1963-1969 [electronic resource] : Asia and the Pacific, First Supplement.
  • Lyndon B. Johnson National Security Files, 1963-1969 [electronic resource] : Committee File.
  • Lyndon B. Johnson National Security Files, 1963-1969 [electronic resource] : Israel.
  • Lyndon B. Johnson National Security Files, 1963-1969 [electronic resource] : Latin America.
  • Lyndon B. Johnson National Security Files, 1963-1969 [electronic resource] : Latin America First Supplement.
  • Lyndon B. Johnson National Security Files, 1963-1969 [electronic resource] : Name and Speech Files.
  • Lyndon B. Johnson National Security Files, 1963-1969 [electronic resource] : The Middle East. ;
  • Lyndon B. Johnson National Security Files, 1963-1969 [electronic resource] : The United Nations.
  • Lyndon B. Johnson National Security Files, 1963-1969 [electronic resource] ; U.S.S.R. and Eastern Europe.
  • Lyndon B. Johnson National Security Files, 1963-1969 [electronic resource] : Vietnam, First Supplement.
  • Lyndon B. Johnson National Security Files, 1963-1969 [electronic resource] : Vietnam, November 1963-June 1965.
  • Lyndon B. Johnson National Security Files, 1963-1969 [electronic resource] : Vietnam, Second Supplement.
  • Lyndon B. Johnson National Security Files, 1963-1969 [electronic resource] : Vietnam, Special Subjects.
  • Lyndon B. Johnson National Security Files, 1963-1969 [electronic resource] : Vietnam, Third Supplement.
  • Lyndon B. Johnson National Security Files, 1963-1969 [electronic resource] : Western Europe.
  • Lyndon B. Johnson National Security Files, 1963-1969 [electronic resource] : Western Europe, First Supplement.
  • Crises in Panama and the Dominican Republic [electronic resource] : National Security Files and NSC Histories (1963-1969).
  • Richard M. Nixon National Security Files, 1969-1974 [electronic resource] : Africa.
  • Richard M. Nixon National Security Files, 1969-1974 [electronic resource] : Asia : Office Files of Henry Kissinger.
  • Richard M. Nixon National Security Files, 1969-1974 [electronic resource] : India-Pakistan War of 1971.
  • Richard M. Nixon National Security Files, 1969-1974 [electronic resource] : Kissinger's Secret Vietnam Negotiations.
  • Richard M. Nixon National Security Files, 1969-1974 [electronic resource] : Meetings with Foreign Leaders.
  • Richard M. Nixon National Security Files, 1969-1974 [electronic resource] : Middle East Negotiations.
  • Richard M. Nixon National Security Files, 1969-1974 [electronic resource] : Nixon's 1972 Trip to China.
  • Richard M. Nixon National Security Files, 1969-1974 [electronic resource] : Strategic Arms Limitation Talks.
  • Richard M. Nixon National Security Files, 1969-1974 [electronic resource] : The Middle East.
  • Richard M. Nixon National Security Files, 1969-1974 [electronic resource] : U.S.S.R. and Eastern Europe.
  • Richard M. Nixon National Security Files, 1969-1974 [electronic resource] : Vietnam Country Files.
  • Richard M. Nixon National Security Files, 1969-1974 [electronic resource] : Vietnam Subject Files, Section A. &
  • Richard M. Nixon National Security Files, 1969-1974 [electronic resource] : Vietnam Subject Files, Section B.
  • Richard M. Nixon National Security Files, 1969-1974 [electronic resource] : Western Europe.
  • Gerald R. Ford National Security Files, 1974-1977 [electronic resource] : The Middle East and South Asia, Presidential Country Files.

Librarian for (United States) History & African American Studies

Steven Knowlton