This morning, the National Archives hosted a special naturalization ceremony in the Rotunda. Fifty new citizens were sworn in, coming from over a dozen countries including Afghanistan, Algeria, Bolivia, and Zimbabwe.
During the ceremony Ms. Lori Scialabba, the Acting Director of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services; the Honorable Jeh Charles Johnson, Secretary of Homeland Security; and First Lady Michelle Obama all gave remarks.
Photo Credit: Jeff Reed.
A user asked: “Penultimate signature??”
Sure, who doesn’t enjoy a little “punmanship?”
We assume this was in reference to our John Hancock/Signature Crowdsourcing Post:
But all puns aside, if you have a flair for signatures, handwriting or penmanship, please Help Our Curators Find Signatures in the Records »
As January 23 is the birthday of founding father and owner of the penultimate signature, John Hancock, and National Handwriting Day, it seems the perfect time to share the National Archives’ latest signature crowdsourcing project:
One of our curators is working on an exhibit and would love your suggestions for signatures from National Archives records.
At the National Archives, we have a range of signatures from the infamous (Lizzie Borden), to signatures of individuals before they were famous (Julia Child’s OSS paperwork), as well signatures that had the power to change someone’s life or to change history, such as a Presidential pardon.
We would like your help to tag records with “signature” in our online catalog. Don’t be restricted to any categories of records. Tag records that you think are interesting or surprising.
To get started tagging, you’ll need to:
October 12 is Digital Archives Day
We thought we’d take this opportunity to invite all you digital citizen archivists to try your hand at a tagging mission on our Online Catalog!
We Can Tag It!
We need your help tagging photos and documents in the online catalog for the National Archives.
With every tag you add, you’re doing your part to help the next person discover that record. Go ahead and give it at try.
The National Archives is an official Wikimaniac!
We’re happy to announce that the National Archives is partnering with Wikimedia D.C. on Wikimania 2012, which is being held in Washington D.C this year, July 12-14. We are thrilled to be able to work together with Wikimedia D.C. on its conference in order to promote our common values: citizen engagement, collaboration, innovation, and the sharing of free knowledge. We join the Department of State’s Office of eDiplomacy, the Library of Congress, and the Broadcasting Board of Governors as fellow Wikimania partners. In addition, David Ferriero will be giving the conference’s closing plenary speech.
We have been collaborating with Wikimedia D.C. and the Wikimedia community for over a year. Last year, the National Archives hosted Wikipedia’s 10th anniversary celebration for the D.C. area and brought on a Wikipedian in Residence. Since then, we have cooperated on a number of projects and hosted several on-site events around the country—including the multi-day GLAMcamp D.C. conference this February and a meetup just this month hosted by the National Archives at Kansas City. We value the contributions Wikipedians have made as citizen archivists. We look forward to collaborating with Wikimedia into the future, and are making plans for the upcoming Wikipedia Loves Libraries campaign.
We know that Wikimania will be an amazing opportunity to engage with a large and diverse international group of volunteers, activists, fellow lovers of knowledge, (most importantly!) citizen archivists. At the National Archives, we have been Wikipedians, and even Wikisourcerors, for more than a year, and are proud now to be able to call ourselves Wikmaniacs as well. Are you as excited as we are? You can learn more about Wikimania at their web site, and even find out how to volunteer.
Until fairly recently, social media has been seen as experimental and outside the realm of the essential work of our agency. Today that is simply no longer the case. Smart use of social media is now mission-critical to our agency.
Today, it is no longer about a single voice disseminating information from the Archives. Our customers want deeper access to our staff and to hear the entire chorus of our voices. Our citizen archivists and engaged customers eagerly await more ways to participate and add their voices to the chorus. Together we can provide greater access to the records, and a deeper understanding of those records. Together we’ll amplify each other’s messages.
Let’s do it!
Read the full post on the AOTUS blog.
Titanic Tag It Tuesday!
100 years later, people are still fascinated by stories about the Titanic and her crew and passengers, 1,514 of whom died on her ill-fated maiden voyage. Those stories are detailed in the records about the tragedy, some of which are in the holdings of the National Archives. This Tag It Tuesday, we invite you to embark on the Titanic tagging mission that is featured on the Citizen Archivist Dashboard »
Shown above is one of the images that is included in the mission:
Photograph of a Lifeboat Carrying Titanic Survivors, 05/14/1912 (NAI 278337)
Some possible tags that you can add are “Titanic,” “lifeboat,” “survivors,” “sinking,” “iceberg,” or “S.O.S.”
Or you might want to examine the manifest of alien passengers on board the R.M.S. Carpathia and tag the record with the names of passengers to help improve searchability.
Our business may be the past, but here at the Archives, we use today’s social media tools to bring history to you. Join us for Social Media Week DC with some exciting events. All events will take place in the William G. McGowan Theater in Archives I in Washington, DC.
Thursday, February 16
Want to explore exciting new documents and help make them more accessible to the public? Come learn about the Citizen Archivist Dashboard. Meredith Stewart from the Open Government Division will conduct a demonstration of the Citizen Archivist Dashboard from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. The demo will be followed by an exciting hands-on workshop by Stewart and Social Media Manager Jill James called “Let’s Get Tagging!” from 3:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
These events are BYOD—Bring Your Own Device. Please bring your own laptop or tablet! If you can’t make it but still want to see what’s happening, follow the conversation on Twitter (use the hashtag #SMWarchives).
Friday, February 17
Participate in the “Social Media, Government, and 21st Century eDemocracy” panel at 1 p.m. Our very own Archivist of the United States David Ferriero will welcome the panel to the Archives. It will be moderated by Alex Howard of O’Reilly Radar and focuses on meaningful use of social media by Congress and the Government.
If you’re interested in registering for any these free events, check out the schedule online, or drop in to join us at the National Archives. For those around the country, the Citizen Archivist Dashboard Demo and the Social Media panel will be recorded and posted on NARA’s YouTube channel in the coming weeks.
Tag It Tuesday! Tuskegee Airmen
"Pilots of a U.S. Army Air Forces fighter squadron, credited with shooting down 8 of the 28 German planes destroyed in dogfights over the new Allied beachheads south of Rome, on Jan. 27, talk over the day’s exploits at a U.S. base in the Mediterranean theater. Negro members of this squadron, veterans of the North African and Sicilian campaigns, were formerly classmates at a university in the southern U.S.", 02/1944
You’ve probably heard that “Red Tails,” a movie spotlighting the first African American military aviators, is now showing at a theater near you. Widely known as the Tuskegee Airmen, the pilots were part of the U.S. Army Air Corps’ 332nd Fighter and 477th Bombardment Groups. But you don’t have to go to the movies to learn more about their story! Just come to the National Archives!
Interested in the Tuskegee Airmen, the planes they flew, or the missions they were involved in? Then get tagging! »
Announcing the National Archives Transcription Pilot Project!
You can help the National Archives make historical documents more accessible by contributing to transcriptions!
Transcriptions help in searching for the document as well as in reading and understanding the document. The work you do transcribing a handwritten or typed document will help the next person discover and use that record.
Available documents include letters to a civil war spy, presidential records, suffrage petitions, and fugitive slave case files, and today’s featured document - the Credentials of Hiram Rhodes Revels.
Elvis Aaron Presley - January 8, 1935 - August 16, 1977
Elvis may have left the building but he’s still in the Archives — from his famous meeting with Nixon, his military records, fan mail, and court case files, the National Archives is full of records concerning the King. Elvis fans and budding citizen archivists can try their hand at tagging Elvis records too!
What’s your favorite Elvis song?
From the Archivist of the United States, David Ferriero
Together We Can Do It!
We just launched the Citizen Archivist Dashboard (http://www.archives.gov/citizen-archivist/). We encourage you to get involved in elevating the visibility of the records of the United States. Did you know that many grade school children aren’t taught cursive handwriting anymore and can’t read cursive? Help us transcribe records and guarantee that school children can make use of our documents. I have transcribed one myself!
Elvis is in the Archives!
Tag It Tuesday’s all shook up! Today’s Document and our pals over at the Our Presidents tumbler are celebrating “Elvis in the Archives” week and we thought we’d join the fun. Sure, the King is in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame but you can also find him in the National Archives. Included in the Archives’ holdings are the famous image of the Oval Office meeting between President Richard Nixon and Elvis; Elvis’ Official Military Personnel File (OMPF); and a case file regarding copyright infringement and Elvis’ song “Too Much”. We also have a large number of images of Graceland on the occasion of its designation as a National Historic Landmark in 2006.
Tag It Tuesday! Lights, Camera, Archives?
Today’s Tag It Tuesday is going Hollywood! Did you know that every once in a while there’s a star sighting in the records of the National Archives? You just might find a poor little rich girl, a future Godfather, or a Top Gun making a guest appearance in our holdings.
Tammy Kelly, a colleague from the Truman Library, tipped us off about the photograph above; so today, we’re challenging you to identify the actors and actresses posing with President Harry Truman. Do you recognize any of the famous faces? If you do, tag them in the photo. We’ll see how many are identified and we’ll post the results next week! Here’s a hint to help you get started - there’s a joker and a lovely Mame in this image.
More celebrity tagging challenges at NARAtions » Tag It Tuesday! Lights, Camera, Archives?