Ladies Behind the Lens

(The following is an article, written by Brett Carnell and Helena Zinkham of the Prints and Photographs Division, for the November/December 2016 Library of Congress Magazine.) “If one is the possessor of health and strength, a good news instinct … a fair photographic outfit, and the ability to hustle, which is the most necessary qualification, […]

World War I: “Trench Blues” — An African American Song of the War

(The following is a guest post written by Stephanie Hall of the American Folklife Center.) In 1934, folklorist John Lomax and his 19-year-old son Alan went to southern Louisiana to collect folksongs and music in many styles from several ethnic groups in English and French. Among the songs in the resulting collection is “Trench Blues,” a […]

The Power of Photography

(The following is a feature story from the November/December 2016 Library of Congress Magazine, LCM, that was written by Helena Zinkham, director of the Library’s Collections and Services Directorate and chief of the Prints and Photographs Division. You can read the issue in its entirety here.)  What do Marilyn Monroe, Civil War soldiers and the Wright Brothers […]

Pic of the Week: Smokey Robinson

The two-day celebration of Smokey Robinson’s 50-year career—and his selection as the 2016 recipient of the Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song—began in the nation’s capital with a touching trip down the keyboard of George Gershwin’s piano and ended with a rollicking concert of his greatest hits. During his visit, Robinson sat down […]

What Time Is It?

With the recent “fall back” of daylight saving time, we had to reset our clocks and maybe our brains to get used to the change. And, if you’re someone that conducts business in different time zones, that adjustment can take additional getting used to. I know I always have trouble remembering how far ahead or behind […]

Gwen Ifill, a History-Tracker and a HistoryMaker

Those who appreciate high-quality broadcast news were saddened today to learn of the passing of longtime PBS NewsHour co-host and Washington Week moderator Gwen Ifill. The former New York Times, Washington Post and NBC News political, congressional and White House reporter, 61, had been under treatment for cancer. She and her NewsHour co-host Judy Woodruff […]

Writing the Great Novel

November is National Novel Writing Month. Perhaps you’ve heard of, or even signed up for, the NaNoWriMo movement. Encouraging individuals to write and complete a 50,000-word novel from November 1-30, the nonprofit movement provides support, inspiration and community for budding writers to pick up that pen or open that laptop. To date, more than 9 […]

Veterans History Project Gets New “Book”

Adding another “book” to its social media shelf, the Library of Congress welcomes the Veterans History Project to Facebook. There, VHP will be sharing the stories of our veterans along with other news and initiatives. Visitors are also encouraged to share their own stories and help VHP collect more. VHP’s Facebook joins several other Facebook accounts from the […]

World War I: Helen Johns Kirtland, Frontline Photojournalist        

(The following is a guest post by Beverly Brannan, curator of photography in the Prints and Photographs Division. Helen Johns Kirtland must have been a very persuasive person because only a few U.S. women obtained credentials to report in countries actively fighting in World War I. Both she and her husband Lucien Swift Kirtland secured […]

Election Day Collection Coverage

Today, American citizens gather en masse to exercise their right to vote for the nation’s next president. This particular election will certainly go down in the history books as an interesting one. However, American presidential election history is full of choice moments. This election year hasn’t been the first to see name-calling and insults. In […]