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Virtual File

What is the Virtual File? A Digital Collection of Ephemera


It began as the Vertical File. Since 1969, librarians kept files of uncataloged materials by topic. The Vertical File includes memos, letters, timelines, biographies, series from newspapers, compilations by librarians, and more. The print Vertical File remains an important resource for historical materials on policy topics in Minnesota. For example, there are thick files on the death penalty, nuclear waste storage, and the unicameral legislature.

The Vertical File changed to the digital Virtual File in 2010; it can be searched by anyone as a subset of the Library's News Archive. It is used primarily by library staff as an electronic repository of ephemera. It contains the same types of information we stored in paper format.

The Virtual File is a small part of the resources on legislative topics available from the Library. It may include documents you need, but is not a broad, one-stop database. Do you have questions about the Virtual File or need advice on researching legislative topics? Contact a librarian ( or 651-296-8338) to learn about all the resources available to you.


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