Transcripts and files of federal grand jury
investigations are archived. You'd have to contact the U.S. Attorney's
Office in the district where the grand jury sat to find out where they
archive their records.
The problem is, however, that all transcripts and
other records of a grand jury's investigation are encompassed by the
principles of grand jury secrecy set out in Rule 6(e) of the Federal
Rules of Criminal Procedure. Neither the rule itself nor the common law
background which it incorporates set any "half-life" for grand jury
secrecy, that is, any time period after which secrecy no longer must be
maintained. A couple of years ago, a scholar, aided by, if my
recollection is correct, the American Historical Association, was able
to gain access to portions (just portions) of the transcripts of the
grand jury that investigated, and charged, Alger Hiss for espionage. The
scholar argued that the transcripts were essential for his scholarly
endeavor, a position the AHA supported.
As the court noted, though, at least some of the
reasons for maintaining secrecy survive, even fifty or so years after
the grand jury ended its investigation. For one thing, as the court
pointed out, there is the issue of innocent parties who were
investigated but not charged (or perhaps not so innocent parties who
were investigated but not charged).
In that case, the court did grant the scholar access
to specific portions of the transcripts because he was able to show need
along with a valid purpose for gaining access, the lapse of time made
maintaining secrecy less compelling, and because he was able to point to
specific things he needed. The standard for gaining court-ordered access
to grand jury material under Rule 6(e) is "particularized need," e.g.,
that the party seeking access can show that he or she needs access to
specific parts of the transcript for specific reasons.
So, you might have a shot at it, though 1978 is
I wish you luck.