Tim Gunn will be at the National Archives on December 11, hosting “Deck the Halls: Holidays at the White House.” Join us in person or watch live on our YouTube channel. Details at the bottom of this blog post!
It was 40 years before his famous catchphrase, but Tim Gunn knew he needed to “make it work” if he wanted to get the Christmas tree decorated in time at the White House.
The future Project Runway star had recently begun teaching three-dimensional design at the Corcoran School of Art in Washington, DC, when the call came in. The White House was asking for students to make original ornaments for the tree in the Blue Room.
But just like a challenge on Project Runway, there was a catch: they had one week.
In Gunn’s Golden Rules: Life’s Little Lessons for Making It Work, Gunn recalled that they were excited to have the opportunity—and intensely curious about how the White House had come to be in this situation. “We heard a rumor,” he wrote, “that the Jimmy Carter White House perceived the work of this original ornament maker to be “inappropriate,” and we had a wonderful time trying to imagine what in the world those ornaments had looked like.”
His second-year students … [ Read all ]
Posted by Hilary on December 4, 2014, under - Presidents, The 1970s.
Tags: Blue Room, Christmas, Christmas tree, holiday tradition, Jimmy Carter, Make It Work, Project Runway, Rosalynn Carter, Tim Gunn, White House
Today’s post comes from Timothy Rives, deputy director of the Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum. In honor of Veterans Day and those who have worn a uniform while serving their country, here’s the story behind the famous jacket now on display in our exhibit “Making Their Mark: Stories Through Signatures.”
General Dwight D. Eisenhower considered the Army’s World War II military uniform to be restricting and poorly suited for combat. Instead he had a standard issue wool field jacket tailored to be “very short, very comfortable, and very natty looking.” The resulting “Eisenhower jacket” or “Ike jacket,” as it came to be known, was standard issue to American troops after November 1944. This “Ike jacket” was worn by Eisenhower.
Ike urged theater-wide adoption of the shorter jacket in a May 5, 1943, letter to General George C. Marshall, the Army Chief of Staff:
… [ Read all ]
I have no doubt that you have been impressed by the virtual impossibility of appearing neat and snappy in our field uniform. Given a uniform which tends to look a bit tough, and the natural proclivities of the American soldier quickly create a general impression of a disorderly mob. From this standpoint alone, the matter is bad enough; but
Today’s post comes from James Zeender, Senior Registrar at the National Archives.
On October 25, “The Louisiana Purchase: Making St. Louis, Remaking America” opened in St. Louis. The Missouri History Museum and the National Archives partnered to organize the exhibition, which features the original Louisiana Purchase Treaty of 1803, on loan from the National Archives.
Other National Archives documents on display include Spain’s agreement with France to transfer the Territory to France, the act authorizing the President to take possession from France, the treaty between the United States and the Sauk and the Fox Indians signed at St. Louis in 1804, and six more related items.
The exhibition explores treaty negotiations, the debate in Congress, the territory’s mixed culture and multilingual society, settler conflict with Native Americans, and the extension of slavery into the West.
Did you know the original Louisiana Purchase Treaty consists of three different documents? Each required a separate set of signatures and the private red wax seals of American envoys Robert Livingston and James Monroe and the French finance minister François de Barbé-Marbois.
The Treaty of Cession transferred 828,000 acres of land west of the Mississippi from France to the … [ Read all ]
Posted by Hilary on November 10, 2014, under Uncategorized.
Tags: Bonaparte, france, Grover Cleveland, Louisiana Purchase, missouri, national personnel records center, nprc, St. Louis, STL250, Theodore Roosevelt
October is American Archives Month. To celebrate, we are highlighting our staff around the country and their favorite records from the holdings in the National Archives.
Today’s staff member is Elizabeth Burnes, an archivist at the National Archives at Kansas City. Her favorite record is the Alien File of Miosche Slodovnik. Here’s Elizabeth’s story:
Researchers sometimes have the ”more is more” mindset as they track down documentation on their ancestors, but there are occasions where a single document can provide amazing insights. The Alien File (A-File) of Moische Slodovnik (A6316522) is a prime example.Moische’s great-niece, French journalist Annie Anas, had been researching her family history for about 15 years before she learned of his A-File. Growing up, Annie had learned that her grandparents died in the Auschwitz concentration camp and believed that the whole extended family met a similar fate. In 1973, Annie’s family by chance learned that Moische and two of his four children had successfully escaped the ghetto in Radun, Poland, after hearing that the Nazis planned to liquidate the ghetto on May 10, 1942.
Annie was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to meet Moische’s children, and during the visit she learned that Moische had traveled into the United States following … [ Read all ]
We’re excited to participate in #AskAnArchivist on October 30! Archivists from our locations across the nation are ready to answer your questions on Twitter tomorrow.
We have archivists that concentrate on the history of the National Archives, work with audiovisual materials, declassify documents, textual reference, Presidential materials and more.
This is your chance to find out how archivists came to have these jobs, what they like or dislike, and what they do! No question is too serious or too silly–so find out about FOIA or learn about the invention of the Beach Cart.
The schedule is below, but feel free to tweet us questions ahead of time!
8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET
Got a question for our Presidential libraries? Tweet a question to
@FDRLibrary, 10-11 am ET
@LBJLibrary, noon to 5 pm ET
@carterlibrary 8:30 am-12:30 pm and 1-3 pm ET
@WJCLibrary 9 am-noon CST
@bush41library 10-11 am CST
Schedule for @usnatarchives
8:30-9 am ET, Steve Greene
Steve Greene is an Archivist and the Special Media Holdings Coordinator for the Office of Presidential Libraries since 2010. Before that, Steve was the AV Archivist for the Nixon Presidential Library. Steve has worked with the Preservation, Processing and Reference Service on Stills, Sound Recordings and … [ Read all ]