Barbara A. Mikulski papers
Scope and Contents
The Barbara A. Mikulski papers, 1964-2022, contain the professional and political papers of Democratic Senator Barbara A. Mikulski, covering her early activism and years of service on the Baltimore City Council (1971-1976), in the U. S. House of Representatives for Maryland’s 3rd Congressional District (1977-1987), in the U. S. Senate for Maryland (1987-2017), and as a Homewood Professor of Public Policy at Johns Hopkins University, as well as her political service to the Democratic Party. Contents include files associated with legislation and committee work, speeches and other public statements, news clippings, office administrative files, correspondence and issue mail, project and grant files, casework and other constituent service files, travel records, campaign materials, political service materials, photographs, audio and video tapes, memorabilia, and lecture materials and recordings from her teaching and public events at Hopkins.
The bulk of collection materials pertain to her time in the Senate. Senator Mikulski served on the Committee on Appropriations throughout her entire Senate tenure, and she chaired the committee from December 17, 2012 to January 3, 2015. She achieved many of her major legislative accomplishments through her work on this committee, including funding NASA’s final servicing mission for the Hubble Space Telescope. Her work on the Senate Committee on Labor and Human Resources, which later became the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions, is also well represented in this collection. Landmark legislation and initiatives covered in this collection include the establishment of the Office of Research on Women’s Health at the National Institutes of Health, the Mammography Quality Standards Act, and the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act.
Throughout her time in office, Senator Mikulski was a strong proponent of civil rights, with a particular focus on gender and labor rights. Her records demonstrate a commitment to serving constituent needs, such as her efforts to support labor and industry at the Port of Baltimore, initiatives to restore the environmental health of the Chesapeake Bay and the jobs and industries it supports, and the creation of a grant program to provide critical support to underfunded fire departments. Notable topics covered in this collection include women’s health, public health infrastructure, pay equity, equal employment opportunities, reproductive rights, spousal impoverishment, funding for scientific and technological research, space sciences, regulatory reform and facilities modernization of federal science laboratories, national service initiatives, education, veterans services, and housing development.
Glossary of terms:
Buck: Letter referred to another federal or state agency for response.
NAV: Briefing folder consisting of information on logistics, scheduling, talking points, and background for an event.
Mikulski's office used color-coded folders to indicate such information as the folder's purpose, who it belonged to, and content. While not all colored folders in the collection follow this scheme, many do. Most materials remain in their original folders; therefore, this list may be helpful in understanding the context around the contents of a particular folder.
Staff folder identification list:
Orange pocket folder: CJS
Light blue pocket folder: Legislative backup
White laminated pocket folder: Executive suite/personal
Black pocket folder: Chief of staff
Burgundy pocket folder: Scheduling to go home
Pink file folder: Signature
Gray laminated pocket folder: Press/speeches
Ivory pocket folder: Operations
Gold laminated pocket folder: Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee
Green laminated pocket folder: Intel
Dark blue pocket folder: State projects and events
Yellow pocket folder: Legislative director
Red pocket folder: Political
Source: Barbara Mikulski
- Creation: 1964 - 2022
- Mikulski, Barbara (Person)
Conditions Governing Access
Portions of this collection are restricted. Please consult each series note for more information.
This collection is housed off-site and requires 48-hours' notice for retrieval. Contact Special Collections for more information.
Conditions Governing Use
Single copies may be made for research purposes. Researchers are responsible for determining any copyright questions. It is not necessary to seek our permission as the owner of the physical work to publish or otherwise use public domain materials that we have made available for use, unless Johns Hopkins University holds the copyright.
Biographical / Historical
Barbara Ann Mikulski (D-MD) was born July 20, 1936 in the Highlandtown neighborhood of East Baltimore. She graduated from Mount Saint Agnes College in 1958 and obtained her master's degree in social work (MSW) from the University of Maryland School of Social Work in 1965. Before she was elected to serve on the Baltimore City Council, Mikulski was a social worker and adjunct professor.
A lifelong Baltimorean, Mikulski got her start in politics as a community activist fighting the planned construction of Interstate 95 through the Fells Point and Canton neighborhoods. She served in public office on the Baltimore City Council between 1971-1976, in the U. S. House of Representatives for Maryland’s 3rd Congressional District between 1977-1987, and in the U. S. Senate for Maryland between 1987-2017. She was the first Democratic woman senator elected in her own right, the first woman and first Marylander to chair the Senate Committee on Appropriations, and at her retirement, she was the longest-serving woman in Congress and the longest-serving senator from Maryland. Following her retirement from Congress, she became a Homewood Professor of Public Policy at Johns Hopkins University, and later an affiliate of SNF Agora at Hopkins. She received many honors and awards over her lifetime, including the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2015, induction into the National Women’s Hall of Fame in 2015, and the Maryland Women’s Hall of Fame in 1988, as well as honorary degrees and doctorates from academic institutions including Goucher College, Morgan State University, Johns Hopkins University, and the Pratt Institute.
Sources: 1. Barbara A. Mikulski papers, MS-900, Special Collections, The Johns Hopkins University 2. United States Congress, "MIKULSKI, Barbara Ann," https://bioguide.congress.gov/search/bio/M000702.
Congressional Committee Assignments
This is a list of committees and subcommittees on which Barbara Mikulski served while in Congress. Information on subcommittee participation may be incomplete prior to the 98th Congress.
UNITED STATES HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
1. Committee on Energy and Commerce: 97th-99th Congress.
i. Subcommittee on Health and the Environment: 98th-99th Congress.
ii. Subcommittee on Commerce, Transportation, and Tourism: 98th-99th Congress.
2. Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce: 95th-96th Congress
i. Subcommittee on Transportation and Commerce.
ii. Subcommittee on Health and the Environment.
3. Committee on Merchant Marine and Fisheries: 95th-99th Congress.
i. Subcommittee on Merchant Marine: 98th-99th Congress.
ii. Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Navigation: 98th-99th Congress.
iii. Subcommittee on Oceanography: 98th-99th Congress.
iv. Subcommittee on the Panama Canal and Outer Continental Shelf: 98th Congress.
4. Select Committee on Children, Youth, and Families: 98th Congress
UNITED STATES SENATE
1. Committee on Appropriations: 100th-114th Congress; Chair, 113th Congress; Ranking Member, 114th Congress.
i. Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, State and Judiciary: 102nd-108th Congress.
ii. Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies: 109th-114th Congress; Chair, 110th-113th; Ranking Member, 114th.
iii. Subcommittee on Defense: 109th-114th Congress.
iv. Subcommittee on Foreign Operations: 100th-108th Congress.
v. Subcommittee on Homeland Security: 108th-111th Congress.
vi. Subcommittee on Interior and Related Agencies: 108th-109th Congress.
vii. Subcommittee on Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies: 110th-112th Congress.
viii. Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies: 112th-114th Congress.
ix. Subcommittee on the Legislative Branch: 100th-104th Congress.
x. Subcommittee on State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs 109th-114th Congress.
xi. Subcommittee on Transportation: 101st-107th Congress.
xii. Subcommittee on Transportation, Treasury, and General Government: 108th Congress.
xiii. Subcommittee on Transportation, Treasury, the Judiciary, HUD, and Related Agencies: 109th Congress.
xiv. Subcommittee on Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies: 110th-114th Congress.
xv. Subcommittee on Treasury, Postal Service, and General Government: 100th-104th Congress.
xvi. Subcommittee on Treasury and General Government: 105th-107th Congress.
xvii. Subcommittee on HUD-Independent Agencies: 100th-101st Congress; Chair 101st.
xviii. Subcommittee on Veterans' Affairs, Housing and Urban Development, and Independent Agencies: 102nd-108th Congress; Chair, 102nd-103rd, 107th; Ranking Member, 104th-106th, 108th.
2. Environmental and Public Works: 100th Congress.
i. Subcommittee on Hazardous Wastes and Toxic Substances: 100th Congress.
ii. Subcommittee on Superfund and Environmental Oversight: 100th Congress.
iii. Subcommittee on Water Resources, Transportation, and Infrastructure: 100th Congress.
3. Labor and Human Resources: 100th-105th Congress.
i. Subcommittee on Aging: 103rd-105th Congress; Chair, 103rd; Ranking Member, 104th-105th.
ii. Subcommittee on Children, Family, Drugs, and Alcoholism: 102nd-103rd Congress.
iii. Subcommittee on Education, Arts and Humanities: 100th-104th Congress.
iv. Subcommittee on Employment and Productivity: 100th-103rd Congress.
v. Subcommittee on Labor: 100th-102nd Congress
vi. Subcommittee on Public Health and Safety: 105th Congress.
4. Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions: 106th-114th Congress.
i. Subcommittee on Children and Families: 112th-114th Congress; Chair, 112th.
ii. Subcommittee on Aging: 106th-108th Congress; Chair, 107th; Ranking Member, 106th, 108th.
iii. Subcommittee on Retirement and Aging: 109th-111th Congress; Chair, 110th-111th; Ranking Member, 109th.
iv. Subcommittee on Primary Health and Aging: 112th- 113th Congress.
v. Subcommittee on Primary Health and Retirement Security: 114th Congress.
vi. Subcommittee on Employment and Workplace Safety: 109th-111th Congress.
vii. Subcommittee on Public Health: 106th-107th Congress.
viii. Subcommittee on Bioterrorism and Public Health Preparedness: 109th Congress. 5. Small Business: 100th-102nd Congress.
i. Subcommittee on Urban and Minority Owned Business Development: 100th-102nd Congress.
ii. Subcommittee on Government Contracting and Paperwork Reduction: 100th Congress.
iii. Subcommittee on Export Expansion: Chair, 101st-102nd Congress. 6. Select Committee on Ethics: 103rd-104th, 109th Congress
7. Select Committee on Intelligence: 107th-114th Congress
1. Congressional Directory, 95th Congress, 1st Session. Washington: U. S. Government Printing Office, 1977.
2. Congressional Directory, 96th Congress, 1st Session. Washington: U. S. Government Printing Office, 1979.
3. Congressional Directory, 97th Congress, 1st Session. Washington: U. S. Government Printing Office, 1981.
4. Congressional Directory, 98th Congress, 1st Session. Washington: U. S. Government Printing Office, 1983.
5. Congressional Directory, 99th Congress, 1st Session. Washington: U. S. Government Printing Office, 1985.
6. Congressional Directory, 100th Congress, 1st Session. Washington: U. S. Government Printing Office, 1987.
7. Congressional Directory, 101st Congress, 1st Session. Washington: U. S. Government Printing Office, 1989.
8. Congressional Directory, 102nd Congress, 1st Session. Washington: U. S. Government Printing Office, 1991.
9. Congressional Directory, 103rd Congress, 1st Session. Washington: U. S. Government Printing Office, 1993.
10. Congressional Directory, 104th Congress, 1st Session. Washington: U. S. Government Printing Office, 1995.
11. Congressional Directory, 105th Congress, 1st Session. Washington: U. S. Government Printing Office, 1997.
12. Congressional Directory, 106th Congress, 1st Session. Washington: U. S. Government Printing Office, 1999.
13. Congressional Directory, 107th Congress, 1st Session. Washington: U. S. Government Printing Office, 2001.
14. Congressional Directory, 108th Congress, 1st Session. Washington: U. S. Government Printing Office, 2003.
15. Congressional Directory, 109th Congress, 1st Session. Washington: U. S. Government Printing Office, 2005.
16. Congressional Directory, 110th Congress, 1st Session. Washington: U. S. Government Printing Office, 2007.
17. Congressional Directory, 111th Congress, 1st Session. Washington: U. S. Government Printing Office, 2009.
18. Congressional Directory, 112th Congress, 1st Session. Washington: U. S. Government Printing Office, 2011.
19. Congressional Directory, 113th Congress, 1st Session. Washington: U. S. Government Printing Office, 2013.
20. Congressional Directory, 114th Congress, 1st Session. Washington: U. S. Government Printing Office, 2015.
21. Barbara A. Mikulski papers, MS-900, Special Collections, The Johns Hopkins University.
1341.68 Cubic Feet (1093 boxes total: 1066 record center boxes, 3 flat boxes (21 x 3 x 17 inches), 1 flat box (21 x 1.5 x 17 inches), 3 flat boxes (15.5 x 1.5 x 12 inches), 9 flat boxes (18.5 x 3 x 14.5 inches), 3 flat boxes (31 x 1.5 x 25 inches), 1 cardfile (cassette) box (12 x 3 x 5.5 inches), 5 cardfile (VHS) boxes (12 x 5.5 x 8 inches), 2 custom boxes (16 x 2.75 x 12.25 inches), 3 custom boxes (10.5 x 4.75 x 5.75 inches), 1 custom box (30 x 6 x 24 inches))
Language of Materials
Professional and political papers of Democratic Senator Barbara A. Mikulski, who served on the Baltimore City Council (1971-1976), in the U. S. House of Representatives for Maryland’s 3rd Congressional District (1977-1987), in the U. S. Senate for Maryland (1987-2017), and as a Homewood Professor of Public Policy at Johns Hopkins University.
This collection has not been physically arranged according to series and subseries. Each box generally corresponds to the collection materials as they were organized in the original folders and boxes by Senator Mikulski's staff, with the following exceptions: 1) materials may have been separated due to format or size (e.g., electronic materials were removed from folders and stored with other electronic media, legal size papers in letter size folders were refoldered and placed in a box with other legal size folders), and 2) original boxes may not have been full, so in order to ensure that all materials are properly supported, empty space in one box was then filled with materials of the same size/type from the next box. Researchers interested in all materials of a given topic or type from a certain period are encouraged to check the finding aid for related materials in boxes numbered shortly before or after an identified relevant box. Folders retain their original titles, although additional description may have been added in some cases in the finding aid.
This collection has been arranged into series according to political office (i.e., Baltimore City Council, U. S. House of Representatives, U. S. Senate), while also separating materials that needed to be handled separately due to their format (i.e., media and memorabilia, digital records) and materials associated with activities outside of those political offices (i.e., personal and political papers, post-Senate work). Subseries correspond to major categories of office function or record type within each series (e.g., legislative files, press files, administrative files, project and grant files).
Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements
The items contained in Series 5, Subseries 1 are stored in a variety of multimedia formats including VHS, Betacam, U-matic, audiocassette, and microcassette. Therefore, access to these items may be limited depending on the physical condition of each item, as well as the department's ability to support the playback of recordings stored on outdated media. Please contact Special Collections for more information.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Donated by Barbara A. Mikulski, 2017.
Processed by Emily Hikes, Rachel Hancock, and Jenelle Clark, 2018-2022.
Genre / Form
- clippings (information artifacts)
- legislative records
- press releases
- Guide to the Barbara A. Mikulski papers
- Jenelle Clark
- Description rules
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
- Language of description
- Script of description
- Language of description note
Part of the Special Collections Repository
The Sheridan Libraries
3400 N Charles St
Baltimore MD 21218 USA