Category Archives: Unusual documents

The Gems of Record Group 242 – Foreign Records Seized

Today’s post comes from Sonia Kahn in the National Archives History Office. It is part one of a series on the history behind some of the seized foreign records housed at the National Archives. When you think of the holdings … Continue reading

Posted in - Constitution, - Declaration of Independence, - World War I, - World War II, National Archives History, Unusual documents | 9 Comments

Flight of a Sadako Crane

Today’s post comes from Ben Jordi, Public Affairs Specialist in Strategy and Communications, at the National Archives in College Park, MD. Growing up, Clifton Truman Daniel never talked to his grandfather, Harry S. Truman, about his role in the war … Continue reading

Posted in - World War II, News and Events, Unusual documents | Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

Ida Wilson Lewis, lighthouse keeper and fearless Federal worker

Today’s post comes from Ashley Mattingly, who is an archivist at the National Archives at St. Louis, where she manages the collection of archival civilian personnel records. The most well-known lighthouse keeper in the world was an American woman who … Continue reading

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An airing of grievances: A pension clerk’s appeal

In honor of Festivus, this seems like the perfect document for the airing of grievances. This feature was originally published in Prologue: Quarterly of the National Archives (Summer 2013). At the National Archives, and almost any other archival institution, one of the … Continue reading

Posted in - Civil War, Prologue Magazine, Uncategorized, Unusual documents | Tagged , , , , , , ,

Mystery lady identified!

Alan Walker, an archivist in the Textual Processing unit in the National Archives at College Park, MD, just solved a mystery that staff have wondered about for many years. Mark down this auspicious date, for I shall reveal to you … Continue reading

Posted in National Archives History, Rare Photos, Unusual documents | Tagged , , , , | 4 Comments

“I was a gunner and a gun captain on a 90MM-AAA gun during World War II…”

Today’s post comes from Alan Walker, archivist at the National Archives in College Park, Maryland. Now, maybe it’s happened to you: that “needle in a haystack,” “home run,” unbelievable find that blew you away, and brought joy to a researcher. … Continue reading

Posted in - World War II, Rare Photos, Uncategorized, Unusual documents | Tagged , , , , , | 7 Comments

A big cheese for the Big Cheese in 1837

In 1836, President Jackson accepted 1,400-pound wheel of cheese from Col. Thomas Meacham, a dairy farmer near Sandy Creek, NY. The cheese was mammoth, and it sat, ripening, in the White House for over a year. Eventually, Jackson invited everyone … Continue reading

Posted in Myth or History, Pennsylvania Avenue, Presidents, Unusual documents | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Celebrating the life of an ancestor who was a “12 Years A Slave”

This past summer, Vera Williams attended her annual family reunion and Solomon Northup Day. The day honors her great-great-great grandfather, Solomon Northup, a free black man who was kidnapped and forced into slavery in 1841. When Northup escaped, he wrote … Continue reading

Posted in - Civil Rights, - Civil War, Genealogy, Unusual documents | Tagged , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Tasty tidbits for your Thanksgiving table

The best thing about Thanksgiving is gathering around the table, stuffing your faces with turkey, and enjoying the pleasant and agreeable conversation with your extended family. Right? Well, to keep the happy conversation flowing, here’s some fun facts about Thanksgiving … Continue reading

Posted in - Civil War, Abraham Lincoln, Myth or History, Presidents, Unusual documents | Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

On display: Siamese-American Treaty of Amity and Commerce

The Siamese-American Treaty of Amity and Commerce is on display from September 20 to October 31, 2013, (new extended display time!) in the National Archives Building in Washington, DC. Today’s post comes from education and exhibit specialist Michael Hussey. The … Continue reading

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