Dear Diary

LeRoy Gresham (1847-1865) was a teenaged invalid who kept a diary for nearly every day of the Civil War, recording the news, his Confederate sympathies and perceptive details about life on the homefront as he experienced the conflict through newspapers, letters and personal visitors. The son of an attorney, judge, and plantation owner in Macon, […]

Black and White and (Still) Read All Over

Old newspapers have acquired an iffy reputation over the years.  We bemoan the trees that had to die to bring them into existence for their one day of glory; we dub them “mullet-wrappers” or note, as they do in the British Isles, that “Yesterday’s news is tomorrow’s fish-and-chip paper.” But old newspapers can be addictive!  […]

First Drafts: “The Star-Spangled Banner”

(The following is an article from the September-October 2012 issue of the Library’s new magazine, LCM, highlighting “first drafts” of important documents in American history.) O! say, can you see by the dawn’s early light …”   These words are as American as, well, the American flag that inspired them. Francis Scott Key, a young […]

Inquiring Minds: A Visionary Center

(The Library of Congress is not solely our collections. It’s also our people. Often our blog showcases the treasures. Now we’ll also showcase the minds. The following is a guest post by Jason Steinhauer, a program specialist in the Library’s John W. Kluge Center, to debut a new blog series, “Inquiring Minds.” We start with […]

Centennial of Cinema Under Copyright Law

(The following is an article from the September-October 2012 issue of the Library’s new magazine, LCM, highlighting 100 years of Copyright law.) By Wendi A. Maloney A hundred years ago, a new category of work became subject to copyright protection: motion pictures. The Townsend Amendment to the U.S. copyright law took effect Aug. 24, 1912, […]

InRetrospect: September Blogging Edition

Here’s a roundup of some September selections in the Library blogosphere. In the Muse: Performing Arts Blog New Dance Collections in the Performing Arts Encyclopedia (PAE) Presentations on Bronislava Nijinska and the Ballet Russes de Serge Diaghilev are now featured in the PAE.  The Signal: Digital Preservation Yes, the Library of Congress Has Video Games: […]

Congress.gov Three-Week Check-Up

(The following is a guest post from the Library’s Director of Communications, Gayle Osterberg.) In its first three weeks of life (still a newborn!) Congress.gov has attracted almost 45,000 visitors and is approaching a quarter million page views, as people find time to explore the new site and some of its features. It has been […]

A Letter Home

For some Union soldiers, their exposure to southern slavery profoundly altered their views on the institution, even before President Lincoln issued his preliminary Emancipation Proclamation in September 1862. One such soldier, John P. Jones, wrote to his wife of his increasing sympathy for abolitionism after seeing the inhumanity with which slaves could be treated. He […]