Words As Powerful As Bullets: Diplomats during the U.S. Civil War

Today’s blog post comes from Paige Weaver from the History Office of the National Archives. When most people think about the U.S. Civil War, they typically consider it a purely American affair that pitted the geographic regions of the North versus the South. Yet, this so-called “War Between the States” was hardly limited to the … Continue reading Words As Powerful As Bullets: Diplomats during the U.S. Civil War

Josephine Cobb’s Discovery of a Lifetime

March is Women’s History Month! Visit National Archives News to see how we're celebrating. Today’s post comes from Michael Hancock in the National Archives History Office. According to the old saying, a picture is worth a thousand words. But in the case of Josephine Cobb and her 1952 discovery in a Civil War–era photograph, it’s worth … Continue reading Josephine Cobb’s Discovery of a Lifetime

The “EP” at the National Archives

On January 1, 1863, President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation (what some of us here at the Archives call the “EP”)—in the middle of the U.S. Civil War. In it, he declared all slaves within the states that were currently in rebellion to be free. Although it did not abolish slavery altogether, the document … Continue reading The “EP” at the National Archives

The 1986 Immigration Act and My Lifetime Relationship with the Lincoln Cottage

Today's post comes from Jim Zeender, Registrar on the National Archives Exhibits Staff.  On June 1, my colleagues Alexis Hill, Warren Halsey, and I culminated about nine months of work with a visit to the Lincoln Cottage on the grounds of the Old Soldiers Home. Terry Boone and Bill Nenichka had participated in previous trips. A … Continue reading The 1986 Immigration Act and My Lifetime Relationship with the Lincoln Cottage

The Not-So-Lame Amendment

Today's post comes from Hailey Philbin in the National Archives History Office.  The 20th Amendment is often referred to as the Lame Duck Amendment. It was passed by Congress on March 2, 1932, and ratified on January 3, 1933. The amendment changed the date of the Presidential inauguration from March 4 to January 20. It … Continue reading The Not-So-Lame Amendment

On Exhibit: Abolishing Slavery

On December 6, 1865, with Georgia’s ratification of the 13th Amendment, slavery throughout the United States became illegal. Just a few years earlier, in 1861, Ohio Representative Thomas Corwin proposed—and both Houses of Congress passed—a constitutional amendment that would have done the exact opposite. Corwin’s amendment read, "No amendment shall be made to the Constitution which … Continue reading On Exhibit: Abolishing Slavery

National Archives commemorates Memorial Day with video

To commemorate Memorial Day, the National Archives has released a short video about the importance of the holiday. Timed for the 150th anniversary of President Abraham Lincoln’s death and the upcoming sesquicentennial of the 1866 founding of the Grand Army of the Republic (the fraternal organization of Union Civil War veterans), the National Archives created … Continue reading National Archives commemorates Memorial Day with video

On Exhibit: Report concerning the death of Abraham Lincoln

Today's post comes from Zach Kopin, an intern in the National Archives History Office in Washington, DC. On March 4, 1865, President Abraham Lincoln delivered his second inaugural address at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, DC. Dr. Charles A. Leale, a doctor and army surgeon in town from New York, listened with rapt attention to … Continue reading On Exhibit: Report concerning the death of Abraham Lincoln

Annual Message on the State of the Union: The President Speaks

Today’s post comes from Christine Blackerby, an Outreach Specialist at the Center for Legislative Archives at the National Archives in Washington, DC. On January 8, 1790, President George Washington delivered a speech at Federal Hall in New York City. This speech, called his first annual message to Congress (which we now refer to as the State … Continue reading Annual Message on the State of the Union: The President Speaks

On Exhibit: John Wilkes Booth’s Calling Card

Today's post comes from Emma Rothberg, intern in the National Archives History Office.  Tucked in a corner in the Lawrence F. O’Brien Gallery at the National Archives in Washington, DC, is a rectangular piece of paper faded grey with time. It is unobtrusive and, due to its small size, could easily be missed among the larger … Continue reading On Exhibit: John Wilkes Booth’s Calling Card