The Sky No Longer Has Limits: Female Fighter Pilots and the Combat Exclusion Policy

U.S. Air Force General McPeak, U.S. Air Force Chief of Staff, holds a Press Conference  In 1993, the United States Armed Forces lifted the Combat Exclusion Policy, a 45-year-old practice prohibiting women from serving in combat roles. The change only pertained to aviation positions and it wasn't until 2013 that the policy was lifted from … Continue reading The Sky No Longer Has Limits: Female Fighter Pilots and the Combat Exclusion Policy

Spotlight: Elephants in the Archive, Eek!

While National Elephant Appreciation Day may not be officially recognized as a Federal Holiday, its upcoming celebration (September 22nd) provided an excuse for an expedition through our holdings in the Still Picture Branch. The search for elephants, as it is for all animals here in Still Picture, starts with an established finding aid specifically catered … Continue reading Spotlight: Elephants in the Archive, Eek!

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

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

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

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: Christmas During WWII

In honor of the holiday season, the Unwritten Record presents Navy, Army, Marine, and Air Force (AAF) photographs that highlight the various ways in which service members spent Christmas between the years 1941 and 1944. Record Group 80: General Records of the Department of the Navy Record Group 111: Records of the Office of the … Continue reading Spotlight: Christmas During WWII

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

Captured on Film: Armistice Day 1918

This Veterans Day, November 11th, is the 100th anniversary of the armistice of World War I. The armistice was not an official surrender by Germany, which would come several months later with the signing of the Treaty of Versailles, but was essentially the beginning of the end of the war. The Great War, as it is … Continue reading Captured on Film: Armistice Day 1918