Library of Congress

9 Jan 2017

World War II Diaries of Friendship, Suffering, Death

From the Washington Post today, a story of World War II diaries of friendship, suffering, death now preserved at the Library of Congress.

In September 1944, after two years of suffering in POW camps in the Philippines, U.S. Army Lt. George Washington Pearcy was being transferred to one of Japan’s “hell ships,” bound for captivity in the enemy’s home islands.
Before he left, he entrusted his diary to a fellow prisoner who was staying behind. Pearcy had written the diary on the backs of tin-can labels and other scraps of paper, and he wanted to make sure it survived him.

He gave it to Lt. Robert F. Augur, a friend who had lost a leg in the fighting at Corregidor in 1942 and who kept a small journal of his own.

Pearcy, 29, was killed a few weeks later when the prison ship Arisan Maru was torpedoed by an American submarine. Augur, 34, […]

11 Aug 2016

Rambles Through Our Country in 1890

The Library of Congress Prints and Photos blog today features an 1890 game called Rambles Through Our Country – An Instructive Geographical Game for the Young. While it’s nice just to marvel at the chromolithograph printing of this colorful game, this item has research value for genealogists working on records from the United States in 1890.

There are probably no earth-shattering revelations here, but the images and the way in which Americans viewed individual states in 1890 makes interesting reading, as well as providing context for your research.

Lara Szpszak writes, “The goal of the game is to help players become familiar with American geography and the treasures the United States has to offer. A player spins the “teetotum” and places their counter on the matching number on the map. Each number then corresponds to a location and description in the accompanying booklet. Fortunately, the booklet is available online from the Internet Archives!” […]

7 Feb 2016

Saving Historic Newspapers

Today’s post is about the sleuthing librarians and archivists do when finding, sharing, and saving historic newspapers.

I’ve written before about the joint NEH-Library of Congress project, Chronicling America, which offers free digitized historic newspapers from many U.S. states. But it’s easy to overlook the work being done to compile the U.S. Newspaper Directory 1690-Present, a database locating existing copies of newspapers in repositories throughout the United States. The U.S. Newspaper Directory 1690-Present is part of the Chronicling America site, but it’s not too obvious either that it exists or what it can do for your research.

Because this directory contains a list of virtually all of the newspapers published in America since 1690 compiled by LC librarians, it helps you identify what titles exist for a specific place and time, and how to access these newspapers. (Not all of them are digitized yet, of course, but the directory will tell you which repositories hold the newspaper in question.) At this […]

4 Dec 2015

Searching LOC.gov Webinar

Join Library of Congress staff for their Searching LOC.gov webinar on Thursday, 10 December 2015 at 4pm EST.
The nation’s oldest federal cultural institution and the largest library in the world, the Library of Congress holds millions of books, recordings, photographs, maps and manuscripts in its collections.

Do you want to find Library of Congress primary sources? What search strategies does a power user need to know? Because the holdings of the Library of Congress are massive and so it its Web site, the Searching LOC.gov webinar can help.

During the Searching LOC.gov webinar, Library of Congress staff will break it down for you to make it easier to navigate. As a result, you will gain greater understanding of the breadth and depth of the Library’s collections.

Although the Searching LOC.gov webinar  is marketed to educators, genealogists will also find the “tips and shortcuts to finding primary sources, suggestions on how to plan effective searches, and how to ask […]