August 30, 2017

Sen. Inouye’s congressional papers available to the public


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The congressional archival papers of the late Daniel K. Inouye, who served 53 years in Congress, 50 in the U.S. Senate, are now available to the public via the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa Library Congressional Papers Collection.

Daniel K. Inouye and Henry Giugni

Senator Daniel K. Inouye, left, and his Chief of Staff Henry Giugni

The library is cataloging and digitizing 1,400 boxes of materials it received in 2014. Inouye died in December 2012 at the age of 88.

“These papers reflect the broad range of areas that his work entailed on behalf of the state,” said Inouye’s widow Irene at an August 2017 signing ceremony. “I hope that people, including students, will learn about Dan the person, and Dan’s life in public service, so it will inspire others to think about public service as a pathway for them.”

Irene Inouye signing a paper

Irene Inouye, right, at the signing ceremony

The UH Mānoa Library Archives and Manuscripts Department is also working to make portions of the Inouye papers accessible at the Library of Congress.

“This project really demonstrates how the University of Hawaiʻi preserves knowledge,” said UH President and UHMānoa Interim Chancellor David Lassner. “We use this great resource of the Inouye papers to gain new insights, create new knowledge, and then all of this is shared with the people of Hawaiʻi, the nation and the world.”

A Japanese language Bible, which was found in one of the boxes by the UH library staff, was returned to the Inouye family at the signing ceremony. Ken Inouye, the late senator’s son, says the Bible may be more than a hundred years old.

a bible written in Japanese

Inouye family bible

“This Bible came from my father’s childhood home,” said Ken Inouye. “When his parents passed, it was handed to him, and now it’s come back home. This is a great legacy piece for my daughter, Maggie. She’s only seven, but, as she gets older, she’ll understand that this has come full circle.”

Inouye was a Mānoa graduate and strong UH supporter. He helped steer millions of dollars to the university for projects such as the UH Mānoa Center for Microbial Oceanography, UH Hilo’s College of Pharmacy, Kauaʻi Community College’s Technology Center and the UH Maui College Allied Health Center. Each of those facilities are named after Inouye.

Inouye’s papers are the latest addition to the UH Hawaiʻi Congressional Papers Collection that include materials from U.S. Sen. Hiram L. Fong, U.S. Rep. Thomas P. Gill, U.S. Sen. Spark M. Matsunaga, U.S. Rep. Ed Case and U.S. Rep. Patricia F. Saiki.

For information about how to access the Inouye papers, please email archives@hawaii.edu or call (808) 956-6047.