20 July Plot and Operation Valkyrie

This Saturday will be the 75th Anniversary of the failed plot to assassinate Adolf Hitler and implement Operation Valkyrie by German military leaders.  The assassination attempt was carried out by Lieutenant Colonel Claus von Stauffenberg at Hitler’s Wolf’s Lair field headquarters near Rastenburg, East Prussia. On July 20, 1944, Stauffenberg placed a bomb housed in … Continue reading 20 July Plot and Operation Valkyrie

Summer Road Trip 2019: Ambling Through the California Desert

This post was co-written by Amy Edwards and Beth Fortson. In this installment of the Summer Road Trip series, we make our way to the desert where we find ourselves at the lowest point in North America, and later, staring at the tallest mountains in southern California. Join us as we explore Death Valley National … Continue reading Summer Road Trip 2019: Ambling Through the California Desert

50 Years After the Moonwalk: Looking Back at Apollo 11’s Broadcast from the Moon

Fifty years ago, the Apollo 11 spacecraft left the launchpad and began its mission to the Moon with astronauts Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, and Michael Collins. Previous posts on the Unwritten Record covered the intense training undertaken by the prime crew, including 1/6th gravity simulations and lunar lander flight tests spanning several months leading up … Continue reading 50 Years After the Moonwalk: Looking Back at Apollo 11’s Broadcast from the Moon

Summer Road Trip: Albuquerque to Las Vegas

Entering: Albuquerque, New Mexico As we leave Texas and the Boll Weevils in our rear-view, we continue our journey through the Southwest with a stop in Albuquerque, New Mexico. We enter Albuquerque through Record Groups 18-AA: "Airscapes" of American and Foreign Areas, 1917 – 1964; 30-N: Historical Photograph Files, 1896 – 1963; and 75-AO: Photographs … Continue reading Summer Road Trip: Albuquerque to Las Vegas

Spotlight: Propaganda

Due to recent physical changes in the Still Pictures Research Room, space became available for staff to showcase reproductions of some of our holdings. This inaugural display was created by Aaron Arthur and Michael Bloomfield to present examples of Propaganda held by the Branch. “Modern propaganda is a consistent, enduring effort to create or shape … Continue reading Spotlight: Propaganda

Summer Road Trip 2019: Texas

After leaving New Orleans, the Special Media Division headed west towards Texas. Photographs of the Lone Star State can be found in records related to the Air Force, Army, Navy, Coast Guard and Marines, as well as the Bureau of Public Roads, NASA, and many others.  On this road trip, however, we decided to take … Continue reading Summer Road Trip 2019: Texas

Gearing Up for Launch: More Scenes from the Apollo 11 Training Program

Previously this blog covered a few aspects of training performed by the Apollo 11 prime crew in preparation for the mission to the Moon. This time we’ll dive deeper (literally, as you’ll see below) into Apollo 11 astronaut training. We last featured the use of the KC-135 reduced-gravity aircraft for simulating the 1/6th gravity of … Continue reading Gearing Up for Launch: More Scenes from the Apollo 11 Training Program

Summer Road Trip 2019: Memphis and New Orleans

On to.... Memphis! After much fun visiting “Pinckney Castle” in Charleston, South Carolina, it's time we hit the road again! Along with everyone else, apparently. But really, what road trip is complete without some sort of traffic fiasco? It's all part of the cross country touring experience, as you can see in the image 30-N-5523! … Continue reading Summer Road Trip 2019: Memphis and New Orleans

Summer Road Trip 2019: The Other Fortification in Charleston Harbor, South Carolina

Leaving Raleigh, North Carolina, we head southwest down to Charleston, South Carolina, for the next stop on the Summer Road Trip.  While the first thing that might spring to mind about Charleston is Fort Sumter, that is not the only fortification sitting in Charleston Harbor, though it is the only one that you can still … Continue reading Summer Road Trip 2019: The Other Fortification in Charleston Harbor, South Carolina

Beyond Astronaut Ice Cream: How Consumer America Engineered Food for Space Exploration

What do corporations like Pillsbury and Whirlpool have to do with Apollo 11? Quite a lot, as it turns out. In fact, many consumer corporations contributed to the success of the moon landing. For example, engineers at Playtex designed the Apollo spacesuits and Westinghouse provided the cameras that transmitted video signals back to Earth. Pillsbury … Continue reading Beyond Astronaut Ice Cream: How Consumer America Engineered Food for Space Exploration