75th Anniversary of D-Day

This post was compiled by Harry Kidd.  Harry is a volunteer at the National Archives working on textual and photographic digitization projects.  Harry is a former Navy photographer and came across this story while researching military photographers. On June 6, 1944 tens of thousands of American servicemen landed on the Normandy Beaches. The National Archives' … Continue reading 75th Anniversary of D-Day

Summer Road Trip 2019: Maryland and the Traveler’s Toll

Time to hit the road! Our virtual road trip begins where the photographs, films, sound recordings, maps, and more within the Special Media Division live – at the Archives II building in College Park, Maryland. If you haven't yet visited Archives II, or are unable to travel here and see it for yourself, Still Pictures … Continue reading Summer Road Trip 2019: Maryland and the Traveler’s Toll

The Great Archival Cooking Challenge

As you may remember from NARA's exhibit "What's Cooking Uncle Sam", there are records related to food throughout the holdings of the National Archives! As a spring treat, Special Media staff decided to try out some of these historical recipes. We thought about sticking to the recipes in series from the Still Picture Branch - … Continue reading The Great Archival Cooking Challenge

Animatics and Anti-Communism: Payut Ngaokrachang Animates Hanuman for the USIA

We work on a lot of cartoons in the Motion Picture Preservation Lab. Some were made for military service members. Some were made to illustrate the dangers of drug use. But the most consistently surprising cartoons are the ones we find in the films of the United States Information Agency (USIA). During the Cold War … Continue reading Animatics and Anti-Communism: Payut Ngaokrachang Animates Hanuman for the USIA

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

A Mother, a Baby, a Name: Identifying One of the Youngest Survivors of the Holocaust

In five brief seconds at the end of a reel of U.S. Army Signal Corps footage, a mother shows off her baby. Out of context, she might look like any new mother photographed with a newborn. With one hand holding a blanket away from the baby’s face, she smiles and appears to laugh with joy. … Continue reading A Mother, a Baby, a Name: Identifying One of the Youngest Survivors of the Holocaust

Celebration of Passover (Photos)

This post was written in collaboration with Meghan Ryan Guthorn. The Jewish celebration of Passover began this year on April 19th, 2019. In honor of the holiday, the Still Pictures Branch pulled together some images of servicemen celebrating Passover around the world through the years. The images below depict celebrations from 1918 to 1985, in … Continue reading Celebration of Passover (Photos)

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

“A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words”

"A picture is worth a thousand words...." Or so the saying goes. In reality, a photograph only documents a second in time, and as time goes on, it is easy to forget why a particular moment was so important to capture. However, well-captioned photographs can tell us stories; they can give us information about the … Continue reading “A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words”