CARBONDALE — Retired U.S. Rep. Jerry Costello on Wednesday turned over reports, correspondences and other papers accumulated during his 25 years in Congress to SIU Carbondale’s Morris Library.

Costello’s papers will become part of the university’s special collections, joining the works of late U.S. Sen. Paul Simon and former congressmen Glenn Poshard and Ken Gray.

The Belleville Democrat, who retired from service earlier this year, was on campus to formally relinquish the papers and give the last of five lectures he’d agreed to at SIU.

“I’m very proud of the fact SIU will receive my records for the past 25 years I’ve been in Congress,” Costello said. “I hope depositing my records here will help students for many years to come.”

Walter Ray, curator over the library’s special collections, said students and researchers should be able to glean a multitude of fascinating insights to national policy from the late 1980s through 2012.

“Just that knowledge about the process of legislating and policy making should be very interesting to look at,” Ray said.

Costello said he hopes people will get, from the papers, a sense of what the important issues were during his time in Congress and the role he played in those debates.

During his final lecture at the library later in the evening, Costello shared some of his political insights, taken from the perspective of what he would do had he ever been elected president, an office he never sought during his career.


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