We still use these carts in the National Archives, but they are perfect for #ThrowbackThursday!
In 1946, archivist Helen Beach got fed with trying to manage double-shelved records on the carts that she used. So she came up with her own design. In 1948, the carpentry shop made some suggestions, a prototype was created, and staff tried out the “Beach Wagon.”
It was a success! Assistant Archivist Robert H. Bahmer even approved a $25 cash award for her idea.


Mrs. Beach’s “wagons” are still useful—and still being used in the stacks today!

Read more about her innovative cart.

We still use these carts in the National Archives, but they are perfect for #ThrowbackThursday!

In 1946, archivist Helen Beach got fed with trying to manage double-shelved records on the carts that she used. So she came up with her own design. In 1948, the carpentry shop made some suggestions, a prototype was created, and staff tried out the “Beach Wagon.”

It was a success! Assistant Archivist Robert H. Bahmer even approved a $25 cash award for her idea.
Mrs. Beach’s “wagons” are still useful—and still being used in the stacks today!
Lee’s surrender to Grant at Appomattox Court House evokes a popular image of a moment of patriotism untainted by ideology. But Elizabeth Varon reveals that this rosy image conceals a seething debate over what the surrender meant and what kind of nation would emerge from war. Lee and Grant held opposite views of the direction of the country–and of the meaning of the war that had changed the country forever.
Join us on Friday, April 4, at noon in the William McGowan Theater. Watch live online (http://www.ustream.tv/usnationalarchives) or join us in person (enter the National Archives Building through the Special Events entrance at Seventh Street and Constitution Avenue).
A book signing will follow the program.

Lee’s surrender to Grant at Appomattox Court House evokes a popular image of a moment of patriotism untainted by ideology. But Elizabeth Varon reveals that this rosy image conceals a seething debate over what the surrender meant and what kind of nation would emerge from war. Lee and Grant held opposite views of the direction of the country–and of the meaning of the war that had changed the country forever.

Join us on Friday, April 4, at noon in the William McGowan Theater. Watch live online (http://www.ustream.tv/usnationalarchives) or join us in person (enter the National Archives Building through the Special Events entrance at Seventh Street and Constitution Avenue).

A book signing will follow the program.

See the journal page that records the election of George Washington of Virginia, now on display from April 1 to 16, 2014, in the National Archives Building.

This year marks the 225th anniversary of the First Congress. On March 4, 1789, the Congress of the United States met for the first time. It was arguably the most important Congress in U.S. history.

To this new legislature fell the responsibility of passing laws needed to implement a brand new system of government, defining the rules and procedures of the House and Senate, and establishing the precedents that set constitutional government in motion.

One of the first duties of the new legislative body was to meet jointly and count the electoral ballots for President and Vice President of the United States. This page of the first Senate Journal shows the results of that election: George Washington of Virginia was unanimously elected President, and John Adams of Massachusetts, who finished second in the balloting, was elected Vice President.

Image: Senate Journal of the First Congress, First Session, showing entry for April 6, 1789. National Archives, Records of the U.S. Senate

Carol Kostakos Petranek, a FamilySearch associate, explores National Archives records and other resources free and online at FamilySearch.org. 
Tuesday, April 1, at 11 a.m. in Room G-25, Research Center (Penn. Ave. Entrance). 
Image: Members of the families of John, Charles and Emma Dorrance. 1915, National Archives Identifier 283543.
Repeated on Thursday, April 3, at 11 a.m. at the National Archives at College Park, MD, Lecture Room C. 

Carol Kostakos Petranek, a FamilySearch associate, explores National Archives records and other resources free and online at FamilySearch.org

Tuesday, April 1, at 11 a.m. in Room G-25, Research Center (Penn. Ave. Entrance). 

Image: Members of the families of John, Charles and Emma Dorrance. 1915, National Archives Identifier 283543.

Repeated on Thursday, April 3, at 11 a.m. at the National Archives at College Park, MD, Lecture Room C. 

End your Spring Break on a historic note!



Bring your family to the National Archives on March 29 and explore the many ways children and adults have made their mark on history, from developing a signature style to signing groundbreaking policy into law.  
The Family Day hands-on activities will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Boeing Learning Center.
Writing with a quill pen
Making signature hats: pillbox hat, Lincoln hat, tri-corner hat
Family tours of the "Making Their Mark" exhibit
"You be the curator"
Presidential Catch Phrase
Story time
And much more!
Or join us early for "Coffee with the Curator."
Family and educational programming related to “Making Their Mark” is sponsored in part by Fahrney’s Pens, Cross, and Parker Pen Company - Newell Rubbermaid

End your Spring Break on a historic note!

Bring your family to the National Archives on March 29 and explore the many ways children and adults have made their mark on history, from developing a signature style to signing groundbreaking policy into law.  

The Family Day hands-on activities will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Boeing Learning Center.

  • Writing with a quill pen
  • Making signature hats: pillbox hat, Lincoln hat, tri-corner hat
  • Family tours of the "Making Their Mark" exhibit
  • "You be the curator"
  • Presidential Catch Phrase
  • Story time
  • And much more!

Or join us early for "Coffee with the Curator."

Family and educational programming related to “Making Their Mark” is sponsored in part by Fahrney’s Pens, Cross, and Parker Pen Company - Newell Rubbermaid

Sean Theriault, associate professor of government at the University of Texas, at Austin will discuss his recent book on change in the Senate and his current research project. 
Join us on Friday, March 28, at noon in Room G-25, Research Center (Penn. Ave. Entrance).

Sean Theriault, associate professor of government at the University of Texas, at Austin will discuss his recent book on change in the Senate and his current research project. 

Join us on Friday, March 28, at noon in Room G-25, Research Center (Penn. Ave. Entrance).

Do you blog about your family’s adventures?
You’re invited to have coffee with the curator of the National Archives Museum‘s latest exhibition, “Making Their Mark: Stories Through Signatures,” on March 29 prior to a family day in the Boeing Learning Center.
Coffee with the Curator: Family Bloggers
Date: Saturday, March 29, 2014
Time: 9 am
Location: National Archives Museum, Washington, DC
Calling all family bloggers!
Space is limited, so RSVP to Christina Hartman to reserve your spot!
“Making Their Mark” illustrates the many ways people have made their mark on history through a signature. Some you might expect—like presidents signing groundbreaking legislation—and others you might find surprising—like Michael Jackson’s patent for a “method and means for creating anti-gravity illusion.”
This exhibit offers something for all ages and interests. For the littlest visitors, there is a photo of Mickey Mouse and Walt Disney from the very first days of their collaboration, and a drawing of the original teddy bear by Clifford Berryman. For the fashion-conscious, the exhibit features the signature style of First Ladies and Presidents, including Jackie Kennedy’s pillbox hat, President Bush’s cowboy boots, and First Lady Michelle Obama’s dress from Election Day 2008.
Sports fans will get a huge kick out of the signed football from the New York Giants incredible 2012 Super Bowl win, a signed bat from the Word Series 2010 champs, the San Francisco Giants, and a signed 2007 Iraqi national soccer team jersey.
Bloggers attending this exclusive event will have the opportunity to demo the National Archives’ new free exhibit eGuide, as well as ask questions about the exhibit to the curator. Attendees are also invited to join our online conversation by using the hashtag #signatures on their Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram posts.
After the tour of the exhibit, bloggers and their families are invited to participate in the family day activities in the Boeing Learning Center.
Image: Author Brad Meltzer talks to some young visitors at the first-ever sleepover at the National Archives.

Do you blog about your family’s adventures?

You’re invited to have coffee with the curator of the National Archives Museum‘s latest exhibition, “Making Their Mark: Stories Through Signatures,” on March 29 prior to a family day in the Boeing Learning Center.

Coffee with the Curator: Family Bloggers
  • Date: Saturday, March 29, 2014
  • Time: 9 am
  • Location: National Archives Museum, Washington, DC

Calling all family bloggers!

Space is limited, so RSVP to Christina Hartman to reserve your spot!

Making Their Mark” illustrates the many ways people have made their mark on history through a signature. Some you might expect—like presidents signing groundbreaking legislation—and others you might find surprising—like Michael Jackson’s patent for a “method and means for creating anti-gravity illusion.”

This exhibit offers something for all ages and interests. For the littlest visitors, there is a photo of Mickey Mouse and Walt Disney from the very first days of their collaboration, and a drawing of the original teddy bear by Clifford Berryman. For the fashion-conscious, the exhibit features the signature style of First Ladies and Presidents, including Jackie Kennedy’s pillbox hat, President Bush’s cowboy boots, and First Lady Michelle Obama’s dress from Election Day 2008.

Sports fans will get a huge kick out of the signed football from the New York Giants incredible 2012 Super Bowl win, a signed bat from the Word Series 2010 champs, the San Francisco Giants, and a signed 2007 Iraqi national soccer team jersey.

Bloggers attending this exclusive event will have the opportunity to demo the National Archives’ new free exhibit eGuide, as well as ask questions about the exhibit to the curator. Attendees are also invited to join our online conversation by using the hashtag #signatures on their Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram posts.

After the tour of the exhibit, bloggers and their families are invited to participate in the family day activities in the Boeing Learning Center.

Image: Author Brad Meltzer talks to some young visitors at the first-ever sleepover at the National Archives.

Join us on Thursday, April 3,  from 9:30 to 4 pm at the National Archives Building in Washington, DC for an all-day Archives Fair! Enter through the Special Events Entrance on 7th St. and Constitution Ave. The DC Caucus of MARAC and the National Archives Assembly are co-hosting this all-day Archives Fair. Archives-related groups and will be using the area outside the McGowan Theater as an exhibit hall.
You can watch our panel discussion online.
8:30-9:30 a.m. Coffee Hour and Exhibit Hall
9:30-10 a.m. Welcome and  Introduction by the Archivist of the United States
10:00-11:30  a.m. Panel Discussion: Crowdsourcing for Enhanced Archival Access
Elissa Frankle, moderator (US Holocaust Memorial Museum)
Helena Zinkham (Library of Congress)
Ching-Hsien Wang (Smithsonian)
Meredith Stewart (National Archives)
11:30-1 p.m. Lunch & Exhibit Hall
1-2:30 p.m. Panel Discussion: Monuments Men Archives
Barbara Aikens (Smithsonian)
Dr. Greg Bradsher (National Archives)
Maygene Daniels (National Gallery of Art Archives)
2:30-2:45  p.m.  Break and Exhibit Hall
2:45-3:15 p.m. National Archival Authorities Cooperative (NAAC)
John Martinez (National Archives)
Jerry Simmons (National Archives)
3:15-3:45 p.m. Donations Partnership Database
Dawn Sherman (National Archives)
Meg Ryan (National Archives)
3:45-4 p.m.   Closing Remarks and Exhibit Hall

Join us on Thursday, April 3,  from 9:30 to 4 pm at the National Archives Building in Washington, DC for an all-day Archives Fair! Enter through the Special Events Entrance on 7th St. and Constitution Ave. The DC Caucus of MARAC and the National Archives Assembly are co-hosting this all-day Archives Fair. Archives-related groups and will be using the area outside the McGowan Theater as an exhibit hall.

You can watch our panel discussion online.

8:30-9:30 a.m. Coffee Hour and Exhibit Hall

9:30-10 a.m. Welcome and  Introduction by the Archivist of the United States

10:00-11:30  a.m. Panel Discussion: Crowdsourcing for Enhanced Archival Access

  • Elissa Frankle, moderator (US Holocaust Memorial Museum)
  • Helena Zinkham (Library of Congress)
  • Ching-Hsien Wang (Smithsonian)
  • Meredith Stewart (National Archives)

11:30-1 p.m. Lunch & Exhibit Hall

1-2:30 p.m. Panel Discussion: Monuments Men Archives

  • Barbara Aikens (Smithsonian)
  • Dr. Greg Bradsher (National Archives)
  • Maygene Daniels (National Gallery of Art Archives)

2:30-2:45  p.m.  Break and Exhibit Hall

2:45-3:15 p.m. National Archival Authorities Cooperative (NAAC)

  • John Martinez (National Archives)
  • Jerry Simmons (National Archives)

3:15-3:45 p.m. Donations Partnership Database

  • Dawn Sherman (National Archives)
  • Meg Ryan (National Archives)

3:45-4 p.m.   Closing Remarks and Exhibit Hall

Narrated by E. G. Marshall, this film, HR 6161: An Act of Congress, produced and directed by Charles Guggenheim documents how a law is enacted by the United States Congress-in this instance, H.R. 6161, a bill to amend the Clean Air Act. The film follows the journey from conception through committee amendment and final passage. 
U.S. Senator Ed Markey (D-MA), who was a co-sponsor of H.R. 6161, will introduce the film. Following the screening, Bob Kaiser, senior correspondent of The Washington Post and author of Act of Congress: How America’s Essential Institution Works, and How It Doesn’t, will discuss the film and answer audience questions. 
Join us on Thursday, March 27, at 7 p.m. in the William McGowan Theatre (enter the National Archives Building through the Special Events entrance at Seventh Street and Constitution Avenue).
This screening is presented in partnership with the 2014 Environmental Film Festival in the Nation’s Capital.

Narrated by E. G. Marshall, this film, HR 6161: An Act of Congress, produced and directed by Charles Guggenheim documents how a law is enacted by the United States Congress-in this instance, H.R. 6161, a bill to amend the Clean Air Act. The film follows the journey from conception through committee amendment and final passage.

U.S. Senator Ed Markey (D-MA), who was a co-sponsor of H.R. 6161, will introduce the film. Following the screening, Bob Kaiser, senior correspondent of The Washington Post and author of Act of Congress: How America’s Essential Institution Works, and How It Doesn’t, will discuss the film and answer audience questions.

Join us on Thursday, March 27, at 7 p.m. in the William McGowan Theatre (enter the National Archives Building through the Special Events entrance at Seventh Street and Constitution Avenue).

This screening is presented in partnership with the 2014 Environmental Film Festival in the Nation’s Capital.

Produced for the 1939 New York World’s Fair, The City (33 minutes) is a call to rebuild America’s cities in the form of planned communities. Featuring a music score by Aaron Copland, and based on an original story outline by American documentary pioneer Pare Lorentz, The City describes the changes from the American village of the early 1800s to the industrialized cities of 100 years later. Man and Dust (1940; 16 minutes) is an experimental film that dramatizes the living conditions in Missouri, Oklahoma, and Kansas which contributed to a high rate of respiratory illness among lead and zinc miners of the area. The film was recently selected by the Library of Congress to the 2013 National Film Registry. 
Join us on Thursday, March 27, at noon in the William McGowan Theatre (enter the National Archives Building through the Special Events entrance at Seventh Street and Constitution Avenue).
This screening is presented in partnership with the 2014 Environmental Film Festival in the Nation’s Capital.

Produced for the 1939 New York World’s Fair, The City (33 minutes) is a call to rebuild America’s cities in the form of planned communities. Featuring a music score by Aaron Copland, and based on an original story outline by American documentary pioneer Pare Lorentz, The City describes the changes from the American village of the early 1800s to the industrialized cities of 100 years later. Man and Dust (1940; 16 minutes) is an experimental film that dramatizes the living conditions in Missouri, Oklahoma, and Kansas which contributed to a high rate of respiratory illness among lead and zinc miners of the area. The film was recently selected by the Library of Congress to the 2013 National Film Registry.

Join us on Thursday, March 27, at noon in the William McGowan Theatre (enter the National Archives Building through the Special Events entrance at Seventh Street and Constitution Avenue).

This screening is presented in partnership with the 2014 Environmental Film Festival in the Nation’s Capital.