n.records created and originally kept by a United States congressperson and their staffPhillips 1995, 261Congressional papers can be viewed in three chronological periods: sitting members, past members whose papers bulk in the years after 1950, and past members whose papers bulk in the years before 1950. The nature and makeup of the way work is done in Congress has changed most dramatically since the 1950s, which leads to this appropriate division.Gallagher et al. 2011, 12Congressional papers are legally classified as personal papers despite the widespread public belief that they are government records. The donor agreement is negotiated with an individual, and the collections often include family papers and other materials that document a senator’s or a congressperson’s life before and after he or she holds office.Osborne 2012, 57While some would remind us that the creators of the requests signed waivers (HIPAA releases in the case of medical information) allowing the incumbent to disseminate the information as needed in order to pursue a solution to the problem, it is unlikely that they foresaw this could include future researchers poring through congressional papers.Emerling 2018, 312While numerous repositories hold congressional papers, and no doubt utilize them for instruction, nothing has been written specifically about teaching with these types of collections. Modern congressional collections, which are created by members of Congress and the numerous staffers who work in member offices, consist of records in various formats related to legislation, press relations, constituent services, and political activities.