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Library Services

Our Mission

The Ralph J. Bunche Library of the U.S. Department of State is the first Federal Government library. It was founded in 1789, when Thomas Jefferson was the first Secretary of State. In 1997, it was named after Dr. Ralph J. Bunche, a prominent African American statesman, the first person of color to win the Nobel Peace Prize, and the principal author of two chapters of the United Nations Charter. The Library has a significant collection of unclassified and published information sources on foreign relations. It serves Department personnel around the world, providing them with information resources and research services. Email:

U.S. Department of State

The Lessons of 1989: Freedom and Our Future