Corsican Kids Christmas Party With the 57th Bomb Wing 1944

This post was written by guest blogger Carrie Goeringer. On December 23, 1944, weather on the island of Corsica was bleak and dreary, as it had been for most of the winter. Many of the children who lived on the island had never known a real Christmas because of the ongoing Second World War.  So, the … Continue reading Corsican Kids Christmas Party With the 57th Bomb Wing 1944

I Saw Kitty Hawk: Film, Memory, and Archives

A couple of weeks ago, we wrote about the 110th anniversary of The Great Train Robbery, a film that pioneered editing techniques that are so commonplace as to be invisible to viewers today and is acknowledged as the first example of modern film fiction narrative. But this wasn’t the only important innovation taking place in December … Continue reading I Saw Kitty Hawk: Film, Memory, and Archives

Celebrating Aviation with Magee’s “High Flight”

“Oh! I have slipped the surly bonds of Earth . . . . Put out my hand and touched the Face of God.” You may be familiar with these lines—the first and last of John Gillespie Magee, Jr.’s 1941 sonnet “High Flight”. Many of us likely recognize them from President Ronald Reagan’s speech on the … Continue reading Celebrating Aviation with Magee’s “High Flight”

The Great Train Robbery

It’s not very often that we celebrate the 110th anniversary of a film.  When The Great Train Robbery debuted in December of 1903, Henry Ford had recently sold his first car, the Boston Americans had just won the first modern World Series, and Theodore Roosevelt was president of the United States.  Filmmaking was in its … Continue reading The Great Train Robbery

Mission: Turkey! Thanksgiving Dinner and the U.S. Military

Are you ready for Thanksgiving? If it’s your turn to cook, no doubt the next few days will be stressful. But imagine trying to cook Thanksgiving dinner for an entire ship or regiment, or being a mess sergeant tasked with cooking and bringing the meal to troops in the field. Do you know how you’re … Continue reading Mission: Turkey! Thanksgiving Dinner and the U.S. Military

The Preservation and Restoration of John Huston’s “Let There Be Light”

Today's post is by Criss Kovac. Criss is the supervisor of the National Archives' Motion Picture Preservation Lab. In honor of Veterans Day, we are proud to share the National Archives' digital restoration of John Huston’s Let There Be Light (Local Identifier: 111-M-1241), the groundbreaking film about the treatment for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) of … Continue reading The Preservation and Restoration of John Huston’s “Let There Be Light”

Getting the Message Out: Smokey Bear PSAs

In honor of Fire Prevention month, we’ll have several posts about records relating to fire prevention. In our previous post I introduced the real Smokey Bear. In addition to that film the National Archives Motion Picture Branch also holds many public service announcements (PSAs) related to forest fire prevention. They were created by the Ad … Continue reading Getting the Message Out: Smokey Bear PSAs

Images of the Week: USIA Paper Shows

This week I’m posting several examples of posters from the series Paper Show Exhibition Poster Sets, ca. 1974 – ca. 1994 (306-PSP). These posters were created by the United States Information Agency for exhibits they referred to as "Paper Shows", which were pieced together using multiple posters to create a multi-panel display. The entire series … Continue reading Images of the Week: USIA Paper Shows

The Sailor and the Seagull: FMPU Veterans Animate Re-Enlistment Efforts

For the last two weeks, we have been sharing films of the First Motion Picture Unit. This week, we’ll take a look at an animated film produced for the Navy by former members of the FMPU. This post was written with Criss Kovac, supervisor of the Motion Picture Preservation Lab at the National Archives. Like … Continue reading The Sailor and the Seagull: FMPU Veterans Animate Re-Enlistment Efforts

A WWII Training Film in Action: Recognition of the Japanese Zero Fighter

As a follow-up to last week’s post on the Army Air Force’s First Motion Picture Unit (FMPU), this week I am focusing on a title that is arguably the most significant training film produced by the unit. Considered as a federal record, Recognition of the Japanese Zero Fighter (1943) is an important historical document of the training … Continue reading A WWII Training Film in Action: Recognition of the Japanese Zero Fighter