Archives

The entrance to the CIA Museum in Langley, Virginia

See Inside the Rarely Seen and Newly Reimagined CIA Museum

Off-limits to all but a few in-person visitors, the museum is starting to welcome the public, online at least

Louis Armstrong's Black & Blues explores the legendary singer and trumpet player's life and legacy.

This Rap Documentarian's Latest Subject? Louis Armstrong

Sacha Jenkins tells the jazz musician's story through rarely-seen archival footage and letters

The Misses Porter (as they were sometimes called) arguably created the modern historical novel, weaving fascinating, romantic tales out of facts and events culled from history books.

The Forgotten Sisters Who Pioneered the Historical Novel

Jane and Anna Maria Porter ruled Britain's literary scene—until male imitators wrote them out of the story

Jim Metzner recording on Great Gull Island

In Thousands of Recordings, Jim Metzner Collected Sounds From Around the World

The Library of Congress has acquired the prolific radio producer's full body of work

Ernest Hemingway and his middle son, Patrick, pose with a record 119.5-pound Atlantic sailfish caught off Key West, Florida, in May 1934.

Archive of Ernest Hemingway Writings, Photos Opens to the Public for the First Time

Privately owned for decades, the materials include a short story featuring F. Scott Fitzgerald, personal effects and rough drafts

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The Remarkable Effort to Locate America's Lost Patents

An 1836 blaze destroyed thousands of records that catalogued the young nation's ingenuity, but recent discoveries indicate that originals may still exist

Lou Reed, right, recorded stripped-down versions of Velvet Underground songs like “Heroin” with John Cale, left, in 1965.

Cool Finds

Listen to a Lost Tape by a 23-Year-Old Lou Reed

A new album presents the earliest-known recordings of "Heroin," "I'm Waiting for the Man" and "Pale Blue Eyes"

Gwendolyn Midlo Hall

Gwendolyn Midlo Hall, Whose Database Identified Thousands of Enslaved Laborers, Has Died at 93

Searching through forgotten records, she collected data on more than 100,000 individuals

Experts were unable to pinpoint a cause of death, but three medical witnesses who testified during an inquest into the Somerton Man case agreed that his passing “was not natural.” 

Have Scholars Finally Identified the Mysterious Somerton Man?

New DNA analysis suggests a body found on a beach in Australia in 1948 belongs to Carl Webb, an electrical engineer from Melbourne

A love note found among the collection’s many cards and letters

From Lists to Love Letters, What Do People Leave Behind in Library Books?

A California librarian assembles forgotten objects in a heartwarming digital archive

The Appalshop building during the floods

Kentucky Floods Damage Irreplaceable Appalachian Archives

Appalshop, a cultural center in Whitesburg, Kentucky, is still assessing damage from the historic floods

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How One Historian Located Liberia’s Elusive Founding Document

The piece of paper went missing for nearly 200 years, leaving some scholars to question whether it even existed

Fox Grass Below Adam's and 7,000 other works by Andrew Wyeth are now available to museums, researchers and members of the public.

Thousands of Andrew Wyeth Paintings Have Never Been Seen by the Public—Until Now

A new arrangement will make 7,000 of the American realist's works available to museums and researchers

The 700-year-old book is thought to be the oldest surviving document of its kind. 

Holocaust Survivors Ask Israel Museum to Return One-of-a-Kind Haggadah

Their lawsuit claims the Passover book was stolen, then purchased under dubious circumstances

Andy Warhol poses in his studio, The Factory, in Union Square, New York City, on April 12, 1983.

Art Meets Science

Hear an A.I.-Generated Andy Warhol 'Read' His Diary to You in New Documentary

An new Netflix television series employs artificial intelligence to recreate the voice of the Pop Star icon

A new online archive highlights the life and career of eccentric French artist Marcel Duchamp. The collection features nearly 50,000 images of his photos, artworks and documents. 

You Can Now Explore Marcel Duchamp's Personal Papers Online

A new free portal unites three archives in one virtual space, offering an unprecedented look into the artist's life and work

The U.S. Capitol building was fenced off on January 7.

History of Now

Archiving the January 6 Insurrection for History

On the one-year anniversary of the attack on the Capitol, the National Museum of American History continues to collect related artifacts

Singer-songwriter and visual artist Solange has launched a free library of rare works by Black authors, available to borrow on a first-come, first-served basis.

Singer and Artist Solange Debuts Free Library of Rare Books by Black Authors

Readers in the U.S. can borrow 50 titles, including collections of poems by Gwendolyn Brooks and Langston Hughes and a sci-fi novel by Octavia Butler

The cache of newly returned items includes 15 handwritten papers and a small collection of looted antiquities.

Colonial-Era Papers Stolen From Mexico's National Archive Return Home

The documents, many of which are directly linked to conquistador Hernán Cortés, were smuggled out of the country and auctioned in the U.S.

Flight 93 fuselage and call button, now housed in the collections of the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History

September 11

These Free Online Resources Tell the Story of 9/11 and Its Aftermath

Browse 12 archives, databases and portals that help users deepen their understanding of the attacks

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