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Don’t Worry, Turkey on Thanksgiving is Historically Accurate!

Each year, as Thanksgiving Day rolls around, the blogosphere is bombarded with articles telling us that everything we know about Thanksgiving is wrong. In particular, these articles focus on the three-day event in autumn 1621, during which English colonists at Plymouth, Massachusetts, hosted 90 members of the Wampanoag tribe for a feast. Skeptical articles revisiting […]

Thanksgiving Road Trip

The following is the fourth in a series relating to the Medal of Honor. Thanksgiving, with millions of Americans on the road, is one of the busiest travel seasons of the year.  If you’re doing the traveling this year, I implore you to try a new travel game: find the Medal of Honor landmarks/monuments across America, and the recipients […]

Working Together Apart: Virtual 20th/20th Vision

The following is a guest blog post by Yvonne Brown, a processing technician for the Library of Congress Veterans History Project (VHP). It is the sixth in a series from VHP staff. Click on the following names to read previous articles in this series: Tamika Brown– Processing Technician Andrew Huber– Liaison Specialist Tracey Dodson– Administrative […]

“Doing Something Useful:” A Tribute to AFC’s longtime volunteer, Howard Kramer

This is a guest post by processing coordinator Ann Hoog, who among many other things, coordinates interns and volunteers at the American Folklife Center. One of the American Folklife Center’s long-time volunteers, Marshall Howard Kramer, passed away April 30, 2020, of COVID-19. Howard was a beloved member of AFC’s family for nearly 20 years. He […]

Intern reflection: Claire Denny

This is a guest post by our Fall 2019 volunteer intern, Claire Denny. She is currently in her second term as a Master’s degree student in the Folklore Program at George Mason University. When I received a phone call this past summer from the Library of Congress’ American Folklife Center (AFC), I had to compose […]

Filling the Cornucopia

At this time of year we gather to give thanks, for many things that have been important to us during the year, but a common theme is thanks for our food. The holiday falls in the time of the harvest. Different cultural groups around the world also celebrate the harvest with a variety of customs […]

A Possum Crisp and Brown: The Opossum and American Foodways

This is the third in a series of posts about folklife related to the Virginia Opossum, the only marsupial native to the United States.  Find the series here! In 1910, Maggie Pogue Johnson, an African American woman from Virginia, published a dialect poem about classic African American cuisine, or what we would today call “soul food.” […]

From Behind the Lines to Between the Lines: War Poems and Beyond

The following is a blog post in honor of National Poetry Month. While walking the halls of the Library of Congress Thomas Jefferson Building, it is not difficult to be inspired by the Lyric Poetry Hall.  I have often wondered what artists and poets have ventured through these halls for the past 122 years. Were […]