Carl Laemmle: Founder of Universal Studios and Humanitarian

Today’s post comes from Jim Zeender, Senior Registrar in the National Archives Exhibits Office. One of the founders of today’s Universal Studios, Carl Laemmle, was born to Jewish parents in Lupenheim, near Stuttgart, Germany, on January 17, 1867. Young Carl immigrated to Chicago in 1884 and became a naturalized citizen five years later. His Declaration … Continue reading Carl Laemmle: Founder of Universal Studios and Humanitarian

Featured Document: A Right to a Fair Trial

Gideon v. Wainwright (1963), is the landmark the Supreme Court decision that requires states to provide defense attorneys for criminal defendants who can’t afford them. The case centers on Clarence Earl Gideon, a poor drifter with an eighth-grade education. Gideon was arrested in 1961 for allegedly breaking into pool hall and stealing money and alcohol. … Continue reading Featured Document: A Right to a Fair Trial

Remembering “a date which will live in infamy”

Today’s post comes from Sonia Kahn in the National Archives History Office. From its food to its anime to its cars to its video games, Japanese culture is part of everyday American life today. In 1941, however, the idea of so much Japanese influence in our daily lives would have been inconceivable, especially after the events … Continue reading Remembering “a date which will live in infamy”

America’s First Ladies: In Service to Our Nation

Today's post comes from Elle Benak and Sanjana Barr from the National Archives History Office. On Friday September 16, 2016, the National Archives hosted the "Legacies of America's First Ladies" conference in the William G. McGowan theater in Washington, DC. This was part of an ongoing series first launched in 2011 by American University, who … Continue reading America’s First Ladies: In Service to Our Nation

The “Pocket Constitution” makes a comeback

As we celebrate the 229th birthday of the Constitution, the mini, pocket edition has made a comeback. After Khizr Khan, the father of a Muslim soldier killed in Iraq, waved his pocket Constitution during his speech at the Democratic National Convention, sales have soared and pocket Constitutions are flying off the shelves. I use my pocket … Continue reading The “Pocket Constitution” makes a comeback

On Exhibit: An Act to establish the NMAAHC

The Smithsonian's National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) officially opens on September 24, 2016, on the National Mall. It is the 19th and newest Smithsonian Institution museum and is devoted to documenting African American life, history, and culture. The museum was established by a December 16, 2003, act of Congress, but efforts to create … Continue reading On Exhibit: An Act to establish the NMAAHC

Welcome to “The Rock”

Today’s post comes from Sonia Kahn in the National Archives History Office. On August 11, 1934, the first civilian prisoners arrived at the new federal penitentiary, which would infamously become known as “The Rock.” The high-security prison on Alcatraz Island, a short ferry ride from San Francisco, was meant to show the American public that … Continue reading Welcome to “The Rock”

New Web Exhibit on FDR and the Presidential Library System

Today’s post comes from Andrew Grafton in the National Archives History Office. A man deeply devoted to preserving United States history, President Franklin D. Roosevelt made contributions to the National Archives that have proven invaluable. Not only did he sign the law creating the National Archives, appoint the first Archivist of the United States, and … Continue reading New Web Exhibit on FDR and the Presidential Library System

National Archives Celebrates Pride Month

Today’s post comes from Andrew Grafton in the National Archives History Office. This June the National Archives will join Americans across the United States and abroad in celebrating National Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month, which honors the important contributions that LGBTQ+ Americans have made to United States history and culture. Pride Month traces … Continue reading National Archives Celebrates Pride Month

Featured Document: Harvey Milk

Today’s post comes from Sarah Basilion in the National Archives History Office. A letter from San Francisco Supervisor Harvey Milk to President Jimmy Carter is on display in the National Archives’ East Rotunda Gallery until June 29, 2016. In the June 1978 letter, Milk asks President Carter for his support in defeating ballot Proposition 6, … Continue reading Featured Document: Harvey Milk