Bill of Rights Day

December 15 is Bill of Rights Day which commemorates the ratification of the first ten amendments to the U.S. Constitution.  As we celebrate the 225th anniversary of the Bill of Rights on December 15—Bill of Rights Day—let’s take a look back at the origins and history of that day. On December 15, 1791, the first 10 amendments … Continue reading Bill of Rights Day

The 60th Anniversary of the Presidential Library Act of 1955

Today’s post comes from Meagan Frenzer, graduate research intern for the National Archives History Office in Washington, DC. Signed into law on August 12, 1955, the Presidential Libraries Act of 1955 (PLA) established a system to preserve and make accessible Presidential records through the creation of privately erected and Federally maintained libraries. The precedent for the … Continue reading The 60th Anniversary of the Presidential Library Act of 1955

The Father of Flag Day

Today’s post comes from Emma Rothberg, an intern in the National Archives History Office in Washington, DC. June 14 marks the annual celebration known as Flag Day.  On June 14, 1885, Bernard J. Cigrand placed a 10-inch, 38-star flag in a bottle on his desk at the Stony Hill School in Ozaukee County, Wisconsin. The 19-year-old … Continue reading The Father of Flag Day

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 in Washington, DC, to stop by and help consume the massive wheel. He threw the … Continue reading A big cheese for the Big Cheese in 1837

Executive Order 9981: Equality in the military

Cast your vote for Executive Order 9981 to be displayed first in the new "Records of Rights" gallery. Polls close on November 15! Today’s post comes from Tammy Williams, archivist at the Harry S. Truman Presidential Library President Harry S. Truman spent his entire young adulthood in Missouri, a border state during the Civil War. … Continue reading Executive Order 9981: Equality in the military

White House Reunions: Presidential Library Dedications

Today's blog post comes from Susan Donius, Director of the Office of Presidential Libraries at the National Archives. It’s not often that several Presidents are together at one time, but on April 25, the George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum will be dedicated to the American public. Although many dignitaries from around the world will … Continue reading White House Reunions: Presidential Library Dedications

Application Denied!

Today's blog post was written by Sam Rushay, a supervisory archivist at the Truman Presidential Library. In the late summer of 1945, Frances Sarah Curtis of Mt. Rainier, MD, applied for a White House pass. Curtis, a Treasury Department employee in the Bureau of Public Debt (BPD), had worked in the White House File Room … Continue reading Application Denied!

See 13 Inaugurations in Four Days at the National Archives

On Monday, January 21, President Obama will be sworn in for a second term. It will be the 57th Presidential Inauguration. Beginning at 11:30 a.m., the President’s swearing-in ceremony will be shown live in the William G. McGowan Theater at the National Archives. If you are in Washington, DC, don't miss this chance to see … Continue reading See 13 Inaugurations in Four Days at the National Archives

Sometimes an “S” is just an “S”

Today's blog post was written by Tammy Kelly, an archivist at the Harry S. Truman Library. When future President Harry S. Truman was born on May 8, 1884, his parents decided to name him Harry, after his mother’s brother Harrison Young. But what about a middle name? Harry’s parents could not come to a decision—should … Continue reading Sometimes an “S” is just an “S”

Facial Hair Friday: A Letter from Hairy Harry

Today's guest post comes from Tammy Kelly at the Truman Presidential Library. This week’s Facial Hair Friday photo is a most unexpected person: Harry S. Truman, before he became President! At the Truman Library, we know of only two photographs of Truman wearing any kind of facial hair, so this is a rare photo, indeed. … Continue reading Facial Hair Friday: A Letter from Hairy Harry