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Tag: digital vaults

What a beard! What a name!

Bezaleel W. Armstrong. Graduated U.S. Military Academy and Brevet 2nd Lieutenant, 1st Dragoons, 1845; copy of daguerreotype, circa 1846. (ARC 530873; 111-SC-83420)

If this Friday’s facial hair star lived in present times, he would be so very easy to Google.

Yes, “Bezaleel Armstrong” would be pretty easy to find on Facebook and the Internet. In fact, even now a quick name-check in the Google search box pulls up plenty of hits on his unique name.

He would also be pretty easy to spot in a crowd, with his chin-strap beard and long curled hair.

Belazeel was one of eight children, whose names were just as noteworthy: James, John Milton, Margaret King, Albert, George Washington, Eliza Jane, and William Wallace.

The Armstrong family papers are in the Minnesota Historical Library.

Today’s post is not Bezaleel’s only brush with fame. This daguerreotype (a precursor to today’s photography) is also in the Digital Vaults of the National Archives Experience.

Bezaleel was also a veteran of the Mexican War, serving at Vera Cruz and Mexico City in 1847–48. He died in 1849, aged 26.

(Thank you to Laura B. and Kathleen L. of the Foundation for the National Archives for suggesting Bezaleel as a candidate for today’s post!)… [ Read all ]

Top 10 National Archives Web Sites

The National Archives is a behemoth of information.

There are 10 billion or so pages of documents and hundreds of thousands of reels of motion picture footage, all spread out among regional archives, Presidential libraries, and Federal Records Centers to name a few.  But the National Archives family is bigger than just that: we’ve also got the Federal Register and administer the Electoral College, along with the National Declassification Center and plenty of other organizations.

Because of this, navigating through the National Archives—digitally or otherwise—can get a little intimidating. That’s why we here at Pieces of History have put together a top 10 list of some of our favorite haunts in the digital world of the National Archives. By no means is this an official list, or a complete one, or an authoritative compendium/finding aid/compass to navigate the Archives. But it isn’t a bad place to start. Have a NARA website you love, but we missed? Let us know!

fr2010) The Federal Register. Admittedly, this might not look like much now, but FR 2.0, a private/public web site overhaul of the Federal Register, goes live on July 26 and will blow your mind. The sneak peeks show a sleek and user-friendly website that has finally harnessed the power of the contents of the Federal Register.  So what is the Federal Register? It’s the newspaper of … [ Read all ]