Some fifty years ago, Virginia embarked on a strategy of "massive resistance" to desegregation that locked out over 14,000 primary and secondary public school students for up to five years. Collections that document this period often contain individual student records and politically sensitive information. Contradictory laws (FERPA, HIPAA, and FOIA) affect access to these collections. This case study examines decisions regarding access and privacy made by three repositories with such collections. The author raises questions about the legality and ethics of restricting access to collections that contain confidential records and calls for the establishment of best practices to guide the archivists through conflicting access laws.
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