A U.S. Postal Service employee sits behind the wheel of a mailster delivery van.

How to Drive the Mailster: A Time-Traveling Lesson in Postal Technology

Still image from "How to Drive the Mailster Safely" (28.96). With the holiday season upon us, we rely on the U.S. Postal Service to send Christmas cards and deliver last-minute gifts. We’re familiar with the sight of a small mail truck traveling the streets of suburbia, but how did we get there? Let’s travel back … Continue reading How to Drive the Mailster: A Time-Traveling Lesson in Postal Technology

The Art of War

Still from US ARMY ARTISTS, 111-LC-55581 ABOUT THE FILM Working in the Special Media Division at the National Archives, we are used to seeing images of war captured by moving images and still photos. However, the US military also uses more traditional forms of artwork to document their operations and daily lives. All military branches … Continue reading The Art of War

Throw a Nickel on the Grass and Have a Doughnut

Unfortunately, the subject of the film in the title has nothing to do with actual donuts and a whole lot to do with the kind pictured below, the circular aiming sight of a jet fighter, referred to as a "doughnut" in pilot vernacular. Specifically, the film documents the United States Air Force and Navy findings … Continue reading Throw a Nickel on the Grass and Have a Doughnut

The Wright Military Flyer Soars on Celluloid: Uncovering the Story of Our Oldest Government Film

The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) is well known for preserving the first written records of our nation. People come from around the world to see the Declaration of Independence, Constitution, and Bill of Rights. But what about the first government films? The oldest known government-produced film in our holdings is First Army Aeroplane … Continue reading The Wright Military Flyer Soars on Celluloid: Uncovering the Story of Our Oldest Government Film

Universal Newsreel Release Descriptions Now Live in the National Archives Catalog

Universal Newsreel Opening Credits /Logo Nearly 4,000 Universal Newsreel Release descriptions have been added to the National Archives Catalog, the result of a unique, multi-year collaborative effort by NARA staff of the Moving Image and Sound Branch and Citizen Archivist Phil Stewart. The project’s goal was to systematically transcribe the content of the twice-weekly synopsis, … Continue reading Universal Newsreel Release Descriptions Now Live in the National Archives Catalog

Celebrate the 50th Anniversary of Title IX with Archival Footage of Sporting Legends

June 23, 2022 is the 50th anniversary of the passage of Title IX, the landmark federal bill designed to guarantee equal opportunities for women in education and sports by prohibiting sex-based discrimination in federally funded schools. Title IX was passed as part of the Education Amendments Act of 1972, U.S. federal legislation under public law … Continue reading Celebrate the 50th Anniversary of Title IX with Archival Footage of Sporting Legends

International Worker’s Day and the Female Workforce

International Worker’s Day, also known as May Day, is the traditional day that most countries celebrate laborers and contributions of the working class. May Day can trace its origins to the mid-1880s when workers worldwide were demanding an eight-hour workday. In America, the date was chosen by the American Federation of Labor to continue their … Continue reading International Worker’s Day and the Female Workforce

Give a Hoot! Don’t Pollute: Earth Day with Woodsy Owl

Since 1970, every April 22nd is recognized as Earth Day. The day is set aside to promote environmental protection and teach the public how to better care for the planet. This year to celebrate Earth Day, we wanted to share a fun jingle from U.S. Forest Service environmental icon, Woodsy Owl. The song is taken … Continue reading Give a Hoot! Don’t Pollute: Earth Day with Woodsy Owl

Spotlight: 1950 Census Public Service Announcements

Still taken from 29-General-81, 1950 Census On April 1, 2022, the National Archives will release the 1950 Census population schedules online. By law, these records have been confidential for 72 years, but on April 1, the public will be able to access and search the census through a dedicated website. To mark this special occasion, … Continue reading Spotlight: 1950 Census Public Service Announcements

The U.S. Forest Service Presents: Winter Olympics

Please Note: Primary source documents used in this post may contain harmful language. See NARA’s Statement on Potentially Harmful Language. Are you in need of some winter sports action during the break between the Olympics and Paralympics? The U.S. Forest Service has the perfect film for you, aptly titled Winter Olympics. Winter Olympics documents the 1960 … Continue reading The U.S. Forest Service Presents: Winter Olympics