The Dissent Channel of the Department of State

Today’s post is written by David Langbart, an Archivist in the Textual Records Division at the National Archives at College Park. In recent weeks we have seen and heard many media reports mentioning the DISSENT CHANNEL of the Department of State. Most stories note that it finds its origins in the controversies over U.S. policy … Continue reading The Dissent Channel of the Department of State

50 Years of the Pull Slip

Today's post was written by Alan Walker, Archivist at the National Archives at College Park. Can you believe it? April of 1966 saw the introduction of NAR Form 1, the "Reference Service Slip." This paper (commonly referred to as a "pull slip") is used to request records and is just as important to researchers and … Continue reading 50 Years of the Pull Slip

Know Your Records: U.S. Navy Muster Rolls and Personnel Diaries

The Know Your Records series aims to inform our readers of the types of records in our holdings, the information found in those record types, and the process by which researchers can request/get access to these records. Know Your Records: U.S. Navy Muster Rolls/Personnel Diaries U.S. Navy muster rolls and personnel diaries are among the … Continue reading Know Your Records: U.S. Navy Muster Rolls and Personnel Diaries

Cuban Missile Crisis, Revisited

Today's post is written by Michael Rhodes, an archives technician in the Archives' National Declassification Center.    Fifty years after the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, we are still piecing together the actions of his administration. From the Records of the Office of the Secretary of Defense (Record Group 330), a report – probably … Continue reading Cuban Missile Crisis, Revisited

Remembering Leonard A. Rapport {1913-2008} (continued)

Today's post is written by Dr. Greg Bradsher and is a continuation of yesterday's post. On October 31, 1984, Leonard retired from the National Archives and the next day began turning over to Jim Hutson copies of all the documents he had collected.  For the next fifteen months, in his 1952 DeSoto, Leonard traveled the same ground he … Continue reading Remembering Leonard A. Rapport {1913-2008} (continued)

On the Waterfront, or, The Smell of Discovery

Today's post is by College Park processing archivist Alan Walker. True story: Thursday, March 28 was shaping up to be a typical day. I had before me a cart’s worth of boxes full of case files from the Department of Justice that needed to be listed for a spreadsheet of “temporary” files to be disposed. These … Continue reading On the Waterfront, or, The Smell of Discovery

An American Archivist at Ascona, Switzerland, October 1997

Today’s post is written by Dr. Greg Bradsher. One clear, chilly evening this week fifteen years I was alone in the foothills above the town of Ascona, Switzerland, wondering “how in the world did I end up here?” The answer begins in December 1996, in the wake of revelations about Switzerland having dormant bank accounts of … Continue reading An American Archivist at Ascona, Switzerland, October 1997

Make Your Research Visit to NARA More Successful

The "National Archives Researcher News" recently carried an FAQ that provides guidance on ways to improve your research experience at the National Archives. It is reissued here to bring it to the attention of readers of The Text Message. HOW CAN I MAKE MY VISIT MORE SUCCESSFUL? The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) reference … Continue reading Make Your Research Visit to NARA More Successful

So…what’s accessioning?

Today's post is written by Sarah Farinholt and Meghan Ryan who work on the Accessioning team.    Ever wonder how documents get to the National Archives?  Before federal records become part of the National Archives holdings, they must be accessioned.  Accessioning is the process by which the National Archives takes legal and physical custody of records – it … Continue reading So…what’s accessioning?