There is a height limit on buildings built inside in the District of Columbia. This law prevents skyscrapers from being built, so the skyline is very different from New York or Chicago.
At one point, the National Capital Planning Commission (NCPC) challenged heights of buildings that were planned for Arlington, which lies across the river from DC. The court documents from this case are in the holdings of the National Archives.
The defendants, the Board of Supervisors of Arlington County, challenged the notion of the NCPC, the NPS, and the Commission of Fine Arts (CFA) having any jurisdiction in the area of Virginia development.
The CFA presented evidence of how changes to the skyline would impact the visuals regarding the Iwo Jima monument which fell under their jurisdiction.
Read the full story on the Text Message.
Join us for a our Civil War Photography Book Fair, a day featuring author talks on Civil War photography on Saturday, December 7, from 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
Hari Jones, assistant director and curator of the African American Civil War Memorial Freedom Foundation and Museum, will host the event and give opening remarks.
Authors include Ronald Coddington, author of African American Faces of the Civil War; Robert Wilson, author of Mathew Brady: Portraits of a Nation; Barbara Krauthamer, co-author of Envisioning Emancipation; and John Guntelman, author of The Civil War in Color.
Civil War–related book and gifts can be purchased in the theater lobby and book signings will follow each talk.
Presented in partnership with the National Archives Afro-American History Society and the African American Civil War Memorial Freedom Foundation and Museum.
Image: “Tent Life, Washington, DC” photographer unknown. From The Civil War in Color, courtesy of John Guntelman.
The National Archives presents a musical tribute on December 3 in honor of President and Mrs. Kennedy’s commitment to the arts, celebrating their legacy of musical performances in the White House.
On November 13, 1961, Pablo Casals performed the Mendelssohn Trio in D minor at the White House. Kenneth Slowik (cello), James Stern (violin), and Lura Johnson (piano) will present that program on December 3 at 7 p.m.
The event is free and open to the public. (We had to rent a piano for this program!)
"We wanted to honor the memory of President and Mrs. Kennedy with a special tribute to their outstanding commitment to the performing arts and our William G. McGowan theater is a wonderful venue to recreate the historic Pablo Casals performance." said Susan Clifton, producer of public programs at the National Archives in Washington, DC.
Following the performance will be a discussion with Kenneth Slowik, artistic director of the Smithsonian Chamber Music Society, and others.
Presented in partnership with the Smithsonian Museum of American History and the White House Historical Association
Happy Thanksgiving from the National Archives at Denver!
“Wow!” exclaims four-year-old John Lane, Jr., as he sits agape in anticipation of delicious hot roasted turkey on Thanksgiving Day.
So begins the caption for this 1967 Bureau of Reclamation public relations photograph, an image that highlights one of the many productive enterprises benefiting from California’s Central Valley Project. With increased access to water, turkey farms north of Sacramento were able to provide thanksgiving turkeys for families across the United States.
Today at 1:30 p.m., we invite you to join a special live webcast of a musical tribute in honor of the memory of President Kennedy at www.jfklibrary.org.
Award-winning singer-songwriter James Taylor, saxophonist Paul Winter and the Paul Winter Sextext, and the United States Naval Academy Women’s Glee Club will perform musical selections including two from the President’s State Funeral.
They will be joined by Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick; Elaine Jones, director-counsel emeritus of the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund, NASA Astronaut Chris Cassidy, Richard Blanco, poet for the 2013 U.S. presidential inauguration; and Sarah Groustra, an 8th grade student from the Edward Devotion School that JFK attended as a child, who will all read excerpts from a selection of President Kennedy’s most historic speeches.
The ceremony will include a moment of silence at 2 p.m., the time that the President’s death was announced to the nation.
In an effort to allow anyone in the world to join this remembrance, this event will be exclusively for an online audience. There will be no physical audience during these performances – simply the backdrop of the sea that the President loved so dearly as the ceremony is webcasted live at www.jfklibrary.org.
In the days and weeks following the death of President Kennedy, the White House received a flood of condolence mail—over 800,000 letters in the first six weeks, a figure that would eventually rise to over 1.5 million letters.
Condolences arrived from around the world. Men, women, and children from diverse backgrounds—social, economic, political, ethnic, racial, and religious—wrote to Jacqueline Kennedy and her children.
On January 14, 1964, Mrs. Kennedy gave a televised speech, during which she thanked the public for the outpouring of kindness and support:
I want to take this opportunity to express my appreciation for the hundreds of thousands of messages…The knowledge of the affection in which my husband was held by all of you has sustained me, and the warmth of these tributes is something I shall never forget. Whenever I can bear to, I read them. All his bright light gone from the world.
Today, the condolence letters are housed at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library. Because of the immense volume received in the weeks and years after the death of President Kennedy, the Library kept a representative sample of approximately 250,000 letters.
These letters are a reflection of what President Kennedy meant to the American people and citizens of the world. They remain as a transcript of the American experience at a time of great national grief.
See more condolence letters on the Pieces of History blog.
Image: Letter from Patricia Hall of Australia to Jacqueline Kennedy, November 23, 1963 (Kennedy Presidential Library)