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Robert D. Ray Collection added to Drake archives

Cowles Library recently acquired the personal papers of former Iowa Governor Robert D. Ray, BN’52, LW’54. The 19-box set, named the Robert D. Ray Collection, contains a wide variety of Ray’s personal papers and correspondence.

Ray served as the 38th governor of Iowa for 14 years, during which he issued executive orders promoting civil rights, energy conservation, and paperwork reduction. The materials in the Robert D. Ray Collection span 1987-1999, after Ray’s term as governor ended. Many of the archived materials include personal papers, correspondence, publications, and articles from 1998 to 1999, when Ray served as Drake’s president.

Donald Adams, former Drake University vice president of student life, donated the materials for the collection, which is stored in the Drake University Archives. Adams was Ray’s “chief-of-staff” during his time at Drake, and their relationship has remained close throughout the years. Adams was instrumental in arranging for Cowles Library to receive the papers.

“Robert D. Ray is not only vital to Drake’s history, but also to the state of Iowa,” says Claudia Frazer, professor of librarianship and digital initiatives coordinator at Cowles Library. “This collection will reflect an important administrative view of University history, and will also complement other collections of Ray papers already available in our community.”

The materials in the Robert D. Ray collection will be available for anyone to look at, for research purposes only. Individuals must make arrangements with the Cowles Archives Staff in order to physically access materials. The collection can also be accessed at http://cowles-archon.drake.edu/.