Tag Archives: archives

Papers of President Woodrow Wilson Now Online

15 May

The Library of Congress now has Woodrow Wilson’s Papers online. You may read the official post, with link, here.


World War I Centenary: Experiences of the Lone Star Division

24 Apr


The series, Records of Divisions (NAID 301641) of the American Expeditionary Forces (AEF) in Record Group 120, document the service of each combat division during its participation in World War I (WWI). Of the 59 Divisions that were formed, with 28,000 personnel in each Division, only the 36th Division contains Personal War Experiences.

Written by the servicemen after their return from the frontline, 2,300 narratives document their experience of the Meuse-Argonne Offensive. The records can be difficult to read because of the aging and faded records. Most are handwritten on YMCA or Salvation Army note paper or scrap paper. Many are detailed and moving stories; some are peppered with humor, while others are evidence of men struggling to write.

So begins Judy Luis-Watson’s report on the Personal War Experiences records of the 36th Division of the American Expeditionary Forces. You may read her entire post at the National Archives blog here.

Wanted: Volunteers who like history … and can read cursive

9 Apr

One of the hazards of transcribing historical documents is that you never know when you might suddenly find yourself in the middle of a battle.

“I was typing these notes about what seemed like a routine day [on an aircraft carrier],” says Colleen Crook, a retired teacher. “But then the Japanese attacked … and there was a strafing incident and people died and it was very dramatic.”

Ms. Crook, who lives in Columbus, Ohio, is a volunteer with the US National Archives. Programs like the one she’s part of can be found at libraries, archives, and other institutions across the United States, as groups push to digitize documents so they can be available to the public online. The keyboard work of these “citizen archivists” helps organizations complete projects that otherwise would not have been possible – and in return brings people closer to history.

So begins Molly Driscoll’s report on volunteers in transcribing historical documents. You may read the rest of her report here.

The Beloved Classic Novel “The Little Prince” Turns 75 Years Old

4 Apr

Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Though reviewers were initially confused about who, exactly, French author Antoine de Saint-Exupéry’s had written The Little Prince for, readers of all ages embraced the young boy from Asteroid B-612 when it hit stores 75 years ago this week. The highly imaginative novella about a young, intergalactic traveler, spent two weeks on The New York Times’ best-seller list and went through at least three printings by December of that year. Though it only arrived in France after World War II, The Little Prince made it to Poland, Germany and Italy before the decade was up.

So begins Sam Spengler’s concise account of the background for The Little Prince. You may read the rest of her piece at Smithsonian.com here.

Women at Work in the 1950s

27 Mar


In celebration of Women’s History Month and with the rousing collective movement for women’s rights and empowerment which has been reignited over the last year, it seems fitting to look back on past recognition of women for their achievements as both a mark of progress and means of appreciation for those that worked to pave a path toward equality and justice.

So begins Laney Stevenson’s post of National Archives photographs of women at work in the 1950s. For the entire post, see here.

Rare Photo of Harriet Tubman Preserved for Future Generations

6 Mar

A remarkable photo album brought two major institutions together to restore and preserve an important piece of American history. Today, the album is available for the first time online.

The small, leather-bound album shows the signs of its age: broken in places, barely holding together in others, scuffed but somehow still elegant after a century and a half of use.

If time has taken a toll on the album, the photographs inside—placed there by a school teacher so long ago—are timeless and extraordinary.

Tucked into the album’s last page is a previously unknown photo of one of American history’s great figures: abolitionist Harriet Tubman, in what’s believed to be the earliest photo of her in existence.

Turning back a dozen pages reveals another treasure: the only known photo of John Willis Menard, the first African-American elected to Congress.

The album, and the one-of-a-kind photos it holds, were jointly acquired last year by the Library of Congress and the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture in a most-unusual collaboration between two public institutions. Together, they worked to conserve the album for future generations and make it accessible to the public.

So begins Mark Hartsell’s post at the Library of Congress. You may read the rest of the post, with its illustrations, here.

Sometimes the Records Tell Different Stories

23 Jan

The past is the past. History is what someone says about what happened in the past. Historians, and others, consult textual records, oral histories, non-textual records, and artifacts to find evidence of the past. Needless to say, persons writing about people, places, and things observe and/or record those things from their own perception and sources at hand, which might be their own eyes and ears. Thus, it is understandable that two people witnessing the same thing might have a different view of what they saw or heard. To some degree, this should be just common sense to everybody, but it is useful to be periodically reminded of this.

So begins Dr. Greg Bradsher’s essay at the National Archives site about sorting out records of the past that differ. You may read the entire essay here.

Exploring the Past

Reading, Thinking, and Blogging about History

Enough Light

"In faith there is enough light for those who want to believe and enough shadows to blind those who don't." - Blaise Pascal

Lenten Lamentations

Preparing to Participate in God's Mosaic Kingdom

The Text Message

Discoveries from processing and reference archivists on the job

john pavlovitz

Stuff That Needs To Be Said

Wirelesshogan: Reflections from the Hogan

"History is the record of our loves in all their magnificent and ignoble forms." Eugene McCarraher

The Way of Improvement Leads Home

"History is the record of our loves in all their magnificent and ignoble forms." Eugene McCarraher

the way of improvement leads home

reflections at the intersection of American history, religion, politics, and academic life

The Pietist Schoolman

The website and blog of historian Chris Gehrz

Native News Online

American Indian News


Your guide to practically true history.


Reformed. Done Daily.


by Alex Scarfe


Thoughtful Conversation about the American West

Northwest History

"History is the record of our loves in all their magnificent and ignoble forms." Eugene McCarraher

%d bloggers like this: