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Archive for 'History'

The White Wizard Approaches (To Defraud You)

Today’s post was written by Jessica Lee.  She’s a summer intern in the Archives 1 Reference Section, working with the Civil records team. One of the projects I have been assigned this summer is to help create a finding aid for the approximately 10,000 fraud cases housed at the National Archives Building in Washington, DC […]

The End of the Beginning: The United States Breaks Relations with Cuba, 1961

The recent announcement that the United States and Cuba will establish embassies in each other’s capitals signifies the beginning of a second era of formal relations between the two countries.  The first era lasted from 1902, when the U.S. sent its first diplomatic representative to independent Cuba, until January 1961, when the U.S. terminated diplomatic […]

The Best Prophet of the Future is the Past, Part II: Cockpit Doors

This post was written by Chris Naylor, Director of the Textual Records Division. The devastating Germanwings plane crash on March 24, 2015 has reinvigorated the dialogue surrounding airplane cockpit doors, an issue of paramount concern both in 1970 as well as in the wake of the 9/11 attacks. I recently wrote a blog post about […]


June 18, 2015.  The bicentennial of the battle of Waterloo, one of the most important events in early nineteenth century European history.  At that battle, an Anglo-Allied army commanded by the Duke of Wellington combined with a Prussian army under the command of Gebhard Blucher and defeated the French army commanded by Napoleon.  The battle […]

Airplanes Over France, June 6, 1944

Airplanes filled the sky over Normandy, France, on June 6, 1944.  D-Day.  Some planes dropped bombs; some planes towed gliders; some planes dropped paratroopers; some planes dropped . . . paper.  Paper in the form of propaganda leaflets.  The propaganda was aimed both at the French and at the Germans. Two days after D-Day, William […]