Gordon Gilkey: A Man for All Seasons

Today’s post is written by Dr. Greg Bradsher, Senior Archivist at the National Archives at College Park, MD. At the beginning of my freshman year at Oregon State University, I went to see the Dean of the School of Humanities and Social Sciences (now Liberal Arts) to discuss with him the courses I should be … Continue reading Gordon Gilkey: A Man for All Seasons

image of virginia hall

The Secrets of the Office of Strategic Services Personnel Records: Spotlight on Virginia Hall

Today’s post is by Cara Moore Lebonick, Archives Reference Specialist at the National Archives at St. Louis In 1931 Virginia Hall, born this month, was appointed as a “Clerk” for the U.S. Department of State, to be stationed in Warsaw. She failed the “career service” exam twice, once in 1929 and again in 1930, before … Continue reading The Secrets of the Office of Strategic Services Personnel Records: Spotlight on Virginia Hall

The Percentage of Permanent Records in the National Archives: A 1985 Article Revisited

Today’s post is written by Dr. Greg Bradsher, Senior Archivist at the National Archives at College Park, MD. Thirty-five years ago the National Archives had a space problem. It still does, even with the opening of the National Archives at College Park, MD in 1994 (known to staff and researchers as Archives II or just … Continue reading The Percentage of Permanent Records in the National Archives: A 1985 Article Revisited

Three women working on exhibit cases.

The Freedom Train, 1947-1949

Today’s post is written by Dr. Greg Bradsher, Senior Archivist at the National Archives at College Park, MD. Early in my career at the National Archives, my branch chief assigned me the task of describing the records of the American Heritage Foundation, part of the National Archives Gift Collection. This sounded boring, and somewhat was … Continue reading The Freedom Train, 1947-1949

image of writing taken from page 21.

Record Book of Justice of the Peace Ebenezer Ferguson of Philadelphia, 1799-1800

Today’s post is by Claire Kluskens, Digital Projects Archivist at the National Archives in Washington, DC The National Archives recently digitized the Record Book of Ebenezer Ferguson, Justice of the Peace, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, December 1799-July 1800 (National Archives Identifier 155501037). Mr. Ferguson chronicled actions taken by him in his official capacity from December 1799 to July 1800. … Continue reading Record Book of Justice of the Peace Ebenezer Ferguson of Philadelphia, 1799-1800

photograph of man, Ralph S. Mosher, looking at a quadruped model.

Bringing Sci-Fi to Life: The Walking War Machines of ARPA and G.E.

Today’s post is by Jeff Simon who interned with the Textual Processing Department at the National Archives in College Park, MD in the summer of 2019 A walking engine of glittering metal, striding now across the heather; articulate ropes of steel dangling from it, and the clattering tumult of its passage mingling with the riot … Continue reading Bringing Sci-Fi to Life: The Walking War Machines of ARPA and G.E.

When the FBI Used a Stamp Collecting Club as a Counterintelligence Tool

Today’s post is written by Dr. Greg Bradsher, Senior Archivist at the National Archives at College Park, MD. In doing research in declassified Federal Bureau of Investigation records at FBI Headquarters in Washington, D.C., I ran across a file [105 -174254] describing a counterintelligence operation about a Chinese Communist stamp collecting club. Even though the … Continue reading When the FBI Used a Stamp Collecting Club as a Counterintelligence Tool

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Some Americans in Canada: The Record Book of Joseph Edwards, Niagara, Upper Canada, April 1812-January 1813

Today’s post comes from Claire Kluskens, Digital Projects Archivist at the National Archives in Washington, DC In the years after the American Revolution an unknown number of U.S. citizens or residents moved across the generally unregulated northern border to continue their lives - perhaps to seek opportunities or cheap land - in the country we now … Continue reading Some Americans in Canada: The Record Book of Joseph Edwards, Niagara, Upper Canada, April 1812-January 1813

We Hold the Rock!

Today’s post is written by Joseph Gillette, Archivist at the National Archives at College Park. On March 21, 1963, the Alcatraz Federal Penitentiary, often referred to simply as Alcatraz or “the Rock”, closed. High costs, deteriorating physical conditions, and a notorious reputation for brutality all contributed to the decision to close what was generally considered … Continue reading We Hold the Rock!

Appraising FBI Records in New York City and Los Angeles, 1981: A Personal Diary

Today’s post is written by Dr. Greg Bradsher, Senior Archivist at the National Archives at College Park, MD. In going through my papers I found that early in 1982 I had written a paper regarding the 1981 appraisal of Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) records by a team of National Archives and Records Service (NARS)[1] … Continue reading Appraising FBI Records in New York City and Los Angeles, 1981: A Personal Diary