Facial Hair Friday: Joseph Rainey the first African American in the House

  Joseph Rainey was distinguished in many ways—he was the first African American to serve in the U.S. House of Representatives, the first African American to preside over the House of Representatives, and the longest–serving African American during Reconstruction. He also had pretty nice mutton chops. Rainey was born into slavery in 1832 in Georgetown, … Continue reading Facial Hair Friday: Joseph Rainey the first African American in the House

African American History at the National Archives

February is African American History Month! Visit the National Archives website to learn more about our many events and activities celebrating African American History. In the late 1960s the National Archives began hosting conferences for researchers and scholars. These were held on a variety of subjects, but all related to records held by the institution. The … Continue reading African American History at the National Archives

Asian/Pacific American History: Learning our Legacy

May is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month. Visit the National Archives website to learn more about related records and resources. APA Heritage Month is an opportunity to…contribute to the wider understanding of what it means to be an American. – Alex Villaseran, archives technician and APA Unity co-chair Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month was … Continue reading Asian/Pacific American History: Learning our Legacy

“Forgotten Soldier” at American Revolution Museum at Yorktown

The exhibition Forgotten Soldier at the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown, Virginia features the “Inspection Roll of Negroes” from the holdings of the National Archives. Today’s post comes from Jim Zeender, senior registrar in the National Archives Exhibits Office. Mary Perth, Boston King, Moses Wilkinson, David George, and Harry Washington were among the thousands of … Continue reading “Forgotten Soldier” at American Revolution Museum at Yorktown

Caribbean American Heritage Month: Marcus Garvey

June is Caribbean American Heritage Month. Visit the National Archives website for more information on related holdings. Today’s post comes from Vincent Bartholomew from the National Archives History Office. Marcus Garvey envisioned a Pan-African and Black Nationalist movement and used the Black Star Line, a shipping corporation, to unite Africans in the U.S. and the … Continue reading Caribbean American Heritage Month: Marcus Garvey

James Baldwin and Freedom Summer

We’re wrapping up Black History Month with a post from Adam Berenbak, an archivist in the Center for Legislative Archives. Novelist, essayist, poet, and activist James Baldwin (1924–87) “created works of literary beauty and depth that will remain essential parts of the American canon.”[1] He was an openly gay, Black man living in the Civil … Continue reading James Baldwin and Freedom Summer

Victory at Home and Abroad: Combating Segregation in the Armed Forces

February is Black History Month. Visit our website for information on related resources and virtual events. Today’s post comes from Thomas Richardson, an archives technician at the National Personnel Records Center in St. Louis, MO. The valiant effort of those who fought and sacrificed themselves in the line of duty during World War II is … Continue reading Victory at Home and Abroad: Combating Segregation in the Armed Forces

Facial Hair Friday: The Honorable Thurgood Marshall

Join us today @USNatArchives on Twitter and Instagram for the #ArchivesHashtagParty #ArchivesBlackEducation. We will be sharing stories from our Rediscovering Black History blog and our online Catalog. Thurgood Marshall was leader in the struggle against racial discrimination in the United States for a good part of the 20th century. Born in Baltimore, Maryland, he graduated … Continue reading Facial Hair Friday: The Honorable Thurgood Marshall

Treating Race at St. Elizabeths Hospital

Today’s post comes from Ben Miller, an intern with the Exhibits team at the National Archives Museum. On August 31, 1852, Congress appropriated $100,000 to create the government hospital for the insane in Washington, DC. Soon known as St. Elizabeths, the hospital was meant to be a “model institution,” providing the highest quality mental health … Continue reading Treating Race at St. Elizabeths Hospital

Facial Hair Friday: Frederick Douglass, Woman Suffrage Activist

100 years ago in August, the 19th Amendment, granting women the right to vote, became law after decades of work from both female and male suffragists. Visit our website to learn more about the history of the woman suffrage movement.  While Frederick Douglass is perhaps most well known as an abolitionist (and for his salt-and-pepper … Continue reading Facial Hair Friday: Frederick Douglass, Woman Suffrage Activist