Free Pre-Screenings of 85th Academy Award® Nominees at the National Archives
The National Archives will host free screenings of the 85th Academy Award® nominees in four categories - Documentary Feature, Documentary Short Subject, Live Action Short Film, and Animated Short Film - in its William G. McGowan Theater from Wednesday, February 20, through Sunday, February 24, 2013. This year marks the ninth consecutive year these screenings have been hosted by the National Archives.
Seating for all screenings will be on a first-come, first-serve basis.and subject to availability. See the full schedule of screenings
What are your Oscar picks?
Happy Facial Hair Friday! This self portrait, with carefully groomed mustache in the center, is a glamorous photo of a hardworking, groundbreaking photographer.
James Stephen “Steve” Wright was from a working-class family in Washington, DC. By the 1940s he was head of photographic operations for the Federal Works Agency.
In an interview with Nicholas Natason, Wright recalled that “In those days, it was tough for a black man even to become a file clerk in the government … You had to mind your P’s and Q’s, because there were lower-level whites who resented the fact that you were doing photography at all and were waiting for you to stumble.”
But Wright was extremely good at his job; he was efficient, diplomatic and organized. In 1957, Wright was appointed as Photographic Branch Chief at the Department of State. He created State’s first central file on diplomatic personalities, events, and facilities.
Read the full story of Wright’s Federal career over on the Pieces of History blog.
Image: Steve Wright during his Federal Works Agency days. National Archives (208-NP-IY-1).
Frederick Douglass, February 1818 - February 20, 1895
Born into slavery in Maryland in 1818, Frederick Douglass went on to become a prominent abolitionist, author, orator and statesman.
Frederick Douglass, ca. 1879
From the Frank W. Legg Photographic Collection of Portraits of Nineteenth-Century Notables:
The Beginning of National Black History Month - 1976
What first began as Negro History Week in February 1926 expanded into a month-long celebration in 1976. President Gerald R. Ford issued this message recognizing National Black History Month on February 10, 1976.
-from the Ford Library
Check out our newest blog! “Rediscovering Black History: Updates from the National Archives” is now live.
This blog is a partner project to the work of National Archives staff who are updating Dr. Debra Newman Ham’s guide “Black History: A Guide to Civilian Records in the National Archives,” originally published in 1984.
The updated version of this award-winning black history guide will be more user friendly. It will also introduce non-traditional researchers to the valuable resources that the National Archives has to offer regarding the black experience.
Visit the blog at http://blogs.archives.gov/blackhistoryblog/
Image: Letter from Ida B. Wells to “Mrs. Dawes” ARC Identifier 578368. Ida B. Wells was among many individuals who wrote to the Department of Justice demanding Federal help to fight racial violence. Read the full story of this letter on the blog!
In 1926, historian Carter G. Woodson helped create “Negro History Week” during the second week of February, chosen because it coincided with Frederick Douglass’s birthday (February 7), as well as Abraham Lincoln’s (February 12).
In 1976, the Federal government expanded the week to “Black History Month.”
Check out our newest board on Pinterest: “Celebrating Black History Month.”
They have the art, we have the documents!
Join us for a fascinating discussion on Thursday, February 7, at 7 p.m.
Eleanor Jones Harvey, chief curator at the Smithsonian American Art Museum (SAAM), and Michael Hussey, historian at the National Archives, will use images from the exhibit “The Civil War and American Art” at SAAM to explore the connections between these works of art and records from the National Archives.
Rex M. Ellis, associate director for curatorial affairs at the National Museum of African American History and Culture, moderates a panel that includes Ira Berlin, professor of history at the University of Maryland.
The program is free! Enter through the “Special Events” extrance on Constitution Avenue. Take the Green/Yellow Metro lines to the “Archives” stop.
Image: Courtesy of SAAM’s exhibition “The Civil War and American Art.” Eastman Johnson, “A Ride for Liberty—The Fugitive Slaves,” March 2, 1862, oil on board, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Richmond. The Paul Mellon Collection, Photo: Katherine Wetzel, © Virginia Museum of Fine Arts
Rosa Parks, the “Mother of the Civil Rights Movement,” would have turned 100 today (February 4, 1913 - October 24, 2005):
Fingerprint Card of Rosa Parks
Aurelia S. Browder et al. v. W. A. Gayle et al., No. 1147, from the Civil Cases series of the Records of District Courts of the United States
On December 1, 1955, during a typical evening rush hour in Montgomery, Alabama, a 42 year-old woman took a seat near the front of the bus on her way home from the Montgomery Fair department store where she worked as a seamstress. Before she reached her destination, she quietly set off a social revolution when the bus driver instructed her to move, and she refused. The bus driver called the police and they arrested Rosa Parks, an African American woman of unchallenged character.
The African-American community of Montgomery organized a boycott of the buses in protest of the discriminating treatment they had endured for years. The boycott, under the leadership of 26-year-old minister Martin Luther King, Jr., was a peaceful, coordinated protest that lasted 381 days and captured world attention.
Rosa Parks’ legacy is being honored with a special document display and programs at the National Archives during the month of February.
Rosa Parks, the “Mother of the Civil Rights Movement” will be honored with a special document display and programs at the National Archives during the month of February:
On December 1, 1955, Rosa Parks refused to yield her seat to a white passenger on a city bus in Montgomery, Alabama. This act inspired the Montgomery Bus Boycott, led by a young Martin Luther King, Jr., and began a movement that ended legal segregation in America.
Join us Monday, February 4, at noon for a special program celebrating her centennial year.
William S. Pretzer introduces the 2002 documentary Mighty Times: The Legacy of Rosa Parks (40 mins.) Presented in partnership with the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture.
The program is free! Enter through the “Special Events” extrance on Constitution Avenue. Doors open at 6:30. Take the Green/Yellow Metro lines to the “Archives” stop.
Image: Rosa Parks at the ceremony awarding her the Congressional Gold Medal, June 15, 1999. William J. Clinton Presidential Library and Museum, National Archives