This Day in History: James Baldwin

This post draws on an essay about Baldwin’s life and achievements by Alan Gevinson of the Library’s National Audio-Visual Conservation Center. James Baldwin was born 93 years ago today, on August 2, 1924, in New York City. His many novels include his first, “Go Tell It on the Mountain” (1953), considered an American classic. He […]

This Day in History: Statue of Liberty

The Statue of Liberty arrived at its permanent home on Bedloe’s Island in New York Harbor at 1 p.m. on June 19, 1885, “snugly packed in the hold of the French transport Isère,” according to a New York Times report the following day. Multiple delegations of dignitaries, 20,000 citizens, and “every species of craft known […]

President for a Day

All eyes turn to Washington this week, as the nation’s 45th president is inaugurated on January 20. However, until the passage of the 20th Amendment in 1933, inauguration day was always March 4 in order to allow enough time after Election Day for officials to gather election returns and for newly elected candidates to travel to […]

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 […]

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 […]

New Online: Today in History, Hispanic Heritage & Folklife Collections

(The following is a guest post by William Kellum, manager in the Library’s Web Services Division.)  Website Updates Today in History is an online presentation of historic events illustrated by items from the Library’s digital collections. First established in 1997, the site was migrated this month from the American Memory site to a new home […]

New Day for “Today in History”

(The following post was written by Peter Armenti, literature specialist in the Library’s Digital Reference Section and a regular contributor to the poetry and literature blog, “From the Catbird Seat.”) For nearly 20 years, the Today in History feature has been one of the most popular areas of the Library of Congress website. Drawing heavily […]

How Did America Get Its Name?

Today, America celebrates its independence. Our founding fathers drafted and adopted the Declaration of Independence, declaring America’s freedom from Great Britain and setting in motion universal human rights. While the colonies may have established it, “America” was given a name long before. America is named after Amerigo Vespucci, the Italian explorer who set forth the […]

Pic of the Week: Happy 216th Library of Congress!

The Library of Congress celebrates its 216th birthday on Sunday. Founded on April 24, 1800, thanks to an appropriation approved by Pres. John Adams of $5,000 for the purchase of “such books as may be necessary for the use of Congress.” What started with a whopping 740 books and three maps has evolved to more […]