Spotlight: The Harlem Hellfighters Return Home

Please Note: Primary source documents used in this post may contain harmful language. See NARA's Statement on Potentially Harmful Language. Last week, the 369th Infantry Regiment, more famously known as the Harlem Hellfighters, was awarded the Congressional Gold Medal. The honor comes more than a century after their service in Europe during WWI. The regiment … Continue reading Spotlight: The Harlem Hellfighters Return Home

Sinking the Fleets of World War I

Some of the National Archives’ finest footage of the bombardment and sinking of World War I-era ships dates from after the war. In 1921, 1923, and 1931, the United States Navy, in cooperation with the Army Air Forces, bombarded American and German vessels with bombs ranging in size from 25 to 2000 pounds. These spectacles … Continue reading Sinking the Fleets of World War I

Double Take II: Finding Posters within Photos

This post is by Daniel Dancis, a Textual Records Archivist and blogger at The Text Message. When is a photograph more than just a photograph?   Of the millions of digitized images in the National Archives Catalog it is always a thrill to find something new in an old picture. Even more, discovering a connection between two or … Continue reading Double Take II: Finding Posters within Photos

Chewing Gum in WWI (Photos)

Chewing gum has a surprisingly storied history.  Archaeologists have found evidence that the ancient Greeks, the Mayans, and the Aztecs all chewed sticky substances.  It was not until the mid 19th century, however, that American entrepreneurs began mass producing gum.  By the 20th century, gum had become a staple of American life, so much so … Continue reading Chewing Gum in WWI (Photos)

Summer Road Trip 2019: San Francisco and Yosemite National Park

This post was co-written by Audrey Amidon and Ashley Behringer. On the Streets of San Francisco Next on our summer tour of the National Archives’ non-textual holdings, we move on from Los Angeles to San Francisco. The city has featured prominently in 20th Century American culture and history, from the devastating 1906 earthquake, to the Haight-Ashbury district’s … Continue reading Summer Road Trip 2019: San Francisco and Yosemite National Park

Spotlight: Propaganda

Due to recent physical changes in the Still Pictures Research Room, space became available for staff to showcase reproductions of some of our holdings. This inaugural display was created by Aaron Arthur and Michael Bloomfield to present examples of Propaganda held by the Branch. “Modern propaganda is a consistent, enduring effort to create or shape … Continue reading Spotlight: Propaganda

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)

John Purroy Mitchel: The Boy Mayor of New York

This post was written by Harry Kidd.  Harry is a volunteer at the National Archives working on textual and photographic digitization projects.  Harry is a former Navy photographer himself and came across this story while researching military photographers.  John Purroy Mitchel (1879 – 1918) was a native New Yorker. Trained as a lawyer, he gained … Continue reading John Purroy Mitchel: The Boy Mayor of New York

Rescue from Fire Island

This post was written by Harry Kidd.  Harry is a volunteer at the National Archives working on textual and photographic digitization projects.  Harry is a former Navy photographer himself and came across this story while researching military photographers.  In the early morning of January 1st 1919 Surfman Roger Smith reported sighting the U.S.S. Northern Pacific … Continue reading Rescue from Fire Island

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