Spotlight: Aerial Photography of Woodstock Festival Site

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the iconic Woodstock Music Festival, which took place August 15-18, 1969 at a farm near Bethel, New York. The festival, billed as three days of peace and music, drew nearly half a million attendees and has become legendary in American history. Although the Special Media Division doesn't hold … Continue reading Spotlight: Aerial Photography of Woodstock Festival Site

Summer Road Trip: Across the Great Divide and into the Badlands

      Trans-Continental Motor Convoy crossing the Continental Divide NAID 86733688 and 86733684 This post was co-written with Ashley Behringer and Amy Edwards. We've been offline since saying goodbye to Seattle on Thursday, busy exploring the mountains and high desert of the Northwest, then dropping South to Yellowstone National Park. Fans of the Unwritten … Continue reading Summer Road Trip: Across the Great Divide and into the Badlands

Summer Road Trip: Olympic Peninsula

If you are just joining us we have been doing a summer road trip across the United States.  We began our journey in College Park, MD and have been on the road for almost two months now. As we left San Francisco on our way to Yosemite National Park, two images of the past come … Continue reading Summer Road Trip: Olympic Peninsula

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

Celebrating the 150th Anniversary of the Transcontinental Railroad

On May 10, 1869, the last spike of the Transcontinental Railroad was ceremoniously driven in at Promontory Summit, Utah, joining the Central Pacific Railroad and the Union Pacific Railroads to form one continuous railroad to connecting the east to the west. We are recognizing the 150th anniversary of this important event by featuring a few … Continue reading Celebrating the 150th Anniversary of the Transcontinental Railroad

Go Take a Hike! The Appalachian Trail Turns 96 Years Old

March 2019 marked the 96th anniversary of the opening of the first section of the Appalachian Trail which ran from Bear Mountain, New York, to Harriman State Park in Arden, New York. The brainchild of forester Benton MacKaye, the Appalachian Trail, or the “A.T.” as it is widely known, started out as an idea for … Continue reading Go Take a Hike! The Appalachian Trail Turns 96 Years Old

Charleston Harbor at the Brink of War: Sketches from the RG 94, Civil War Atlas Manuscript Maps Series

The Cartographic Branch holds a large collection of Civil War maps. Two series that often get overlooked are comprised of maps associated with the publication of the Atlas to Accompany the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies. The first series consists of copies of the published maps, which are widely available. However, the real gem … Continue reading Charleston Harbor at the Brink of War: Sketches from the RG 94, Civil War Atlas Manuscript Maps Series

Cartographic Records Relating to African American History

February is African American History Month. All of our Special Media branches hold a variety of records relating to African American history. Today, we are featuring some related records from the Cartographic Branch. The above plan shows the layout for the Freeman's Village that was established on the estate of Confederate General Robert E. Lee, … Continue reading Cartographic Records Relating to African American History

Spotlight: Last Minute Holiday Gifts!

Co-Authored by Beth Fortson and Corbin Apkin. You wake up in the middle of the night on Christmas Eve and realize that you have forgotten to get a gift for your sister's brand new "He's Totally The One" boyfriend. You get a text from your old college roommate two days before your New Years Party … Continue reading Spotlight: Last Minute Holiday Gifts!

Mapping the Battle of Fredericksburg

In honor of the anniversary of the Battle of Fredericksburg, which was fought December 13, 1862, the Cartographic Branch is highlighting some of its many maps related to Fredericksburg during the Civil War. In the fall of 1862, both armies began concentrating around Fredericksburg, a town halfway between Washington, DC and Richmond, VA.  Union General … Continue reading Mapping the Battle of Fredericksburg