It was an entirely happy coincidence this week that we announced both the Flickr pilot project and an amazing photographic discovery on exactly the same day.
A trio of images, previously thought to have been picturing different events, have been confirmed to be photographs from Abraham Linclon’s second inauguration as president on March 4, 1865. Here’s the parallel I like to draw:
A user of our Prints and Photographs Online Catalog raised questions about the images, which sent Library of Congress curator Carol Marie Johnson sleuthing. Careful comparisons to the only other two known images from that event and meticulous combing through records led her to this discovery.
My point is that if we can uncover those kinds of treasures, thanks in part to our discerning Web users, imagine what might happen after setting loose hoards of eager photo fans at Flickr.
Even David Letterman made a reference to it on last night’s “Late Show.” That definitely ranks closely in pop-culture significance to the moment when our staff burst into applause when the Library of Congress was first mentioned on-screen in “National Treasure: Book of Secrets”!