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The digital collections of the Library of Congress contain a wide variety of primary source materials related to New York, including books, government documents, manuscripts, maps, motion pictures, photographs, sheet music, and sound recordings. Provided below is a link to the home page for each relevant digital collection along with selected highlights.
Written materials in the Library's digital collections include books, government documents, manuscripts, and sheet music. Examples of written materials related to New York are provided for most of the collections listed below.
This multi-format collection includes approximately 400,000 items documenting the multifaceted life of the extraordinary Aaron Copland--composer, performer, teacher, writer, conductor, commentator, and administrator.
The complete Abraham Lincoln Papers at the Library of Congress consist of approximately 20,000 documents which include incoming and outgoing correspondence and enclosures, drafts of speeches, and notes and printed material.
This collection presents a panoramic and eclectic review of African-American history and culture, spanning almost 100 years from the early 19th through the early 20th centuries, with the bulk of the material published between 1875 and 1900.
This collection consist of correspondence, scientific notebooks, journals, blueprints, articles, and photographs documenting Bell's invention of the telephone and his involvement in the first telephone company, his family life, his interest in the education of the deaf, and his aeronautical and other scientific research.
This collection documents the life of Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865) both through writings by and about Lincoln as well as a large body of publications concerning the issues of the times including slavery, the Civil War, Reconstruction, and related topics. Browse the collection by location on New York to locate 300 items pertaining to New York.
This collection spans the period from the turn of the nineteenth century to the 1880s, although a majority of the song sheets were published during the height of the craze, from the 1850s to the 1870s.
A collection of over 200 hundred social dance manuals at the Library of Congress published from about 1490 to 1929. Many of the manuals also provide historical information on theatrical dance.
This presentation features selected documents from the American Colony in Jerusalem Collection. The full collection in the Manuscript Division of the Library of Congress represents well over 10,000 items stemming from the history of the American Colony, a non-denominational utopian Christian community founded by a small group of American expatriates in Ottoman Palestine in 1881. Browse the collection by location to locate two items for New York.
These life histories were written by staff of the Folklore Project of the Federal Writers' Project for the U.S. Works Progress (later Work Projects) Administration (WPA) from 1936-1940. Included in the collection are 419 titles of mostly first-person accounts of life in New York during the Great Depression.
This collection comprises 253 published narratives by Americans and foreign visitors recounting their travels in the colonies and the United States and their observations and opinions about American peoples, places, and society from about 1750 to 1920.
This collection illustrates the vibrant and diverse forms of popular entertainment, especially vaudeville, that thrived from 1870-1920. Included are 334 English- and Yiddish-language playscripts, 146 theater playbills and programs, 61 motion pictures, 10 sound recordings, 143 photographs, and 29 memorabilia items documenting the life and career of Harry Houdini.
This collection comprises 139 books on Washington, D.C. and the Chesapeake Bay region including first-person narratives, early histories, historical biographies, promotional brochures, and books of photographs that capture in words and pictures a distinctive region as it developed between the onset of European settlement and the first quarter of the twentieth century.
This collection consists of a linked set of published congressional records of the United States of America from the Continental Congress through the 43rd Congress, 1774-1875.
This collection include extracts of the journals of Congress, resolutions, proclamations, committee reports, treaties, and early printed versions of the United States Constitution and the Declaration of Independence. The collection contains more than eighty items related to New York.
This collection documents the historical formation and cultural foundations of the movement to conserve and protect America's natural heritage, through books, pamphlets, government documents, manuscripts, prints, photographs, and motion picture footage drawn from the collections of the Library of Congress.
The Frederick Douglass Papers at the Library of Congress presents the papers of the nineteenth-century African-American abolitionist who escaped from slavery and then risked his own freedom by becoming an outspoken antislavery lecturer, writer, and publisher.
This collection consists of approximately 65,000 items (176,000 pages). Correspondence, letterbooks, commonplace books, diaries and journals, reports, notes, financial account books, and military papers accumulated by George Washington from 1741 through 1799 are organized into nine series.
The Arendt papers contain correspondence, articles, lectures, speeches, book manuscripts, transcripts of Adolf Eichmann's trial proceedings, notes, and printed matter pertaining to Arendt's writings and academic career.
The James Madison Papers from the Manuscript Division at the Library of Congress document the life of the man who came to be known as the "Father of the Constitution" through correspondence, personal notes, drafts of letters and legislation, an autobiography, legal and financial documents, and miscellaneous manuscripts.
This collection contains more than 400,000 items, including music and literary manuscripts, correspondence, photographs, audio and video recordings, fan mail, and other types of materials that extensively document Bernstein's extraordinary life and career.
The collection consists of a variety of materials including newspapers, books, pamphlets, memorials, scrapbooks, and proceedings from the meetings of various women's organizations that document the suffrage fight.
This collection displays the variety and diversity of Sunday pictorial sections published in two prominent U.S. newspapers: the New York Times and New York Tribune. It also includes a book, The War of the Nations: Portfolio in Rotogravure Etchings, with illustrations selected from the New York Times "Mid-Week Pictorials."
The collection consists of The Journal (1896-01-01 to 1896-07-18) and subsequent titles, New York Journal (1896-07-16 to 1897-04-01) and New York Journal and Advertiser (1897-04-02 to 1899-12-31). The New York Journal is an example of "Yellow Journalism," where the newspapers competed for readers through bold headlines, illustrations, and activist journalism.
This collection portrays the states of Michigan, Minnesota, and Wisconsin from the seventeenth to the early twentieth centuries through first-person accounts, biographies, promotional literature, local histories, ethnographic, antiquarian, and colonial archival documents, and other texts drawn from the Library of Congress' General Collections and the Rare Books & Special Collections Division.
This collection comprises 28,000 primary source items dating from the 17th century to the present and encompassing key events and eras in American history. Browse the collection by location to locate more than 1,600 items printed in New York.
This collection assembles a wide array of Library of Congress source materials from the 1920s that document the widespread prosperity of the Coolidge years, the nation's transition to a mass consumer economy, and the role of government in this transition.
This collection contains just over 100 pamphlets and books published between 1772 and 1889 concerning the difficult and troubling experiences of African and African-American slaves in the American colonies and the United States.
The complete Thomas Jefferson Papers at the Library of Congress consists of approximately 27,000 documents ranging in date from 1606 to 1827. Correspondence, memoranda, notes, and drafts of documents make up two-thirds of the Papers.
This collection documents the lives of Wilbur and Orville Wright and highlights their pioneering work which led to the world's first powered, controlled and sustained flight. Included in the collection are correspondence, diaries and notebooks, scrapbooks, drawings, printed matter, and other documents, as well as the Wrights' collection of glass-plate photographic negatives.
This collection highlights letters between Woody Guthrie and staff of the Archive of American Folk Song (now the Archive of Folk Culture, American Folklife Center) at the Library of Congress. The letters were written primarily in the early 1940s, shortly after Guthrie had moved to New York City and met the Archive's assistant in charge, Alan Lomax. Browse the subject index to locate four letters sent from New York.
Included are the papers of presidents, cabinet ministers, members of Congress, Supreme Court justices, military officers, diplomats, reformers and political activists, artists and writers, scientists and inventors, and other prominent Americans whose lives reflect our country's evolution.
The visual material collections at the Library of Congress contains thousands of images documenting the history of New York. Selected images of New York are provided for each collection listed below. Search on terms such as New York City, Brooklyn, Bronx, Central Park, and etc. to locate additional images.
This collection presents 2,100 early baseball cards dating from 1887 to 1914.
This online presentation introduces a multi-faceted man and a variety of complex issues, topics, and events that risk oversimplification in any short retelling. Also included is a sampler of thirty four images related to early baseball (1860s-1920s) from various files and collections in the Prints & Photographs Division, Library of Congress.
The Library's daguerreotype collection consists of approximately 600 photographs dating from 1839 to 1864. Portrait daguerreotypes produced by the Mathew Brady studio make up the major portion of the collection.
This collection of photographs from the Detroit Publishing Company Collection includes over 25,000 glass negatives and transparencies as well as about 300 color photolithograph prints, mostly of the eastern United States. The collection contains more than 4,000 images of New York.
The images in the Farm Security Administration-Office of War Information Collection are among the most famous documentary photographs ever produced. Created by a group of U.S. government photographers, the images show Americans in every part of the nation. Browse the collection by location to locate more than 5,000 black-and-white photographs of New York.
Photographers working for the U.S. government's Farm Security Administration (FSA) and later the Office of War Information (OWI) between 1939 and 1944 made approximately 1,600 color photographs that depict life in the United States, including Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. Browse the collection by location to locate more than twenty color photographs of New York.
This collection is comprised of over 29,000 photographs primarily of architectural subjects, including interiors and exteriors of homes, stores, offices, factories, historic buildings, and other structures concentrated chiefly in the northeastern United States. Browse the collection by location to locate more than 15,000 images of New York.
Photographs of landmark buildings and architectural renovation projects in Washington, D.C., and throughout the United States. The first 23 groups of photographs contain more than 2,500 images and date from 1980 to 2005, with many views in color as well as black-and-white. Browse the collection by location to locate more than 1,800 photographs for New York.
The Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS) and the Historic American Engineering Record (HAER) collections document achievements in architecture, engineering, and design in the United States through a comprehensive range of building types and engineering technologies. Browse the collection by location to locate items for New York.
This collection documents the architecture and social life of the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area in the 1920s, 1930s, and 1940s, including exteriors and interiors of commercial, residential, and government buildings, as well as street scenes and views of neighborhoods. Browse the collection by location to locate more than twenty images of New York.
This collection contains approximately 4,000 images featuring American cityscapes, landscapes, and group portraits. Browse the collection by location to locate more than 300 images of New York.
This collection consists of 908 boldly colored and graphically diverse original posters produced from 1936 to 1943 as part of the New Deal.
This collection represents a wide range of quiltmaking techniques, from highly traditional to innovative. The quilts pictured exhibit excellent design and technical skill in a variety of styles and materials.
This collection consists of 1,395 photographs taken by American photographer Carl Van Vechten (1880-1964) between 1932 and 1964. The bulk of the collection consists of portrait photographs of celebrities, including many figures from the Harlem Renaissance. Browse the collection by location to locate more than twenty images of New York.
This collection contains more than 1,600 photographs of celebrated jazz artists and documents the jazz scene from 1938 to 1948 in New York City and Washington, D.C. Browse the collection by location to locate more than 150 images of New York.
The photographs in this collection document the National Woman's Party's push for ratification of the 19th Amendment as well as its later campaign for passage of the Equal Rights Amendment. Browse the collection by location to locate more than sixty images for New York.
The collection presents 470 interview excerpts and 3,882 photographs from the Working in Paterson Folklife Project of the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress. The collection contains more than forty items pertaining to New York.
The Library of Congress has custody of the largest and most comprehensive cartographic collection in the world with collections numbering over 5.5 million maps, 80,000 atlases, 6,000 reference works, over 500 globes and globe gores, 3,000 raised relief models, and a large number of cartographic materials in other formats, including over 19,000 CDs/DVDs.
This category includes maps that depict individual buildings to panoramic views of large urban areas. These maps record the evolution of cities illustrating the development and nature of economic activities, educational and religious facilities, parks, street patterns and widths, and transportation systems. Browse the collection by location to locate more than 300 maps for New York.
The Civil War Maps collection consists of reconnaissance, sketch, coastal, and theater-of-war maps that depict troop activities and fortifications during the Civil War.
This category contains maps showing campaigns of major military conflicts including troop movements, defensive structures and groundworks, roads to and from sites of military engagements, campsites, and local buildings, topography and vegetation. Some of the maps are manuscripts drawn on the field of battle, while others are engraved including some that have manuscript annotations reflecting the history of the battle or campaign. Browse this category by location to locate more than 200 maps for New York.
The panoramic map was a popular cartographic form used to depict U.S. and Canadian cities and towns during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Known also as bird's-eye views, perspective maps, and aero views, panoramic maps are nonphotographic representations of cities portrayed as if viewed from above at an oblique angle. Browse the collection by location to locate more than 200 maps for New York.
This collection contains cartographic items used by Jean Baptiste Donatien de Vimeur, comte de Rochambeau (1725-1807), when he was commander in chief of the French expeditionary army (1780-82) during the American Revolution. The maps were from Rochambeau's personal collection, cover much of eastern North America, and date from 1717 to 1795.
The Sanborn Fire Insurance Maps Online Checklist provides a searchable database of the fire insurance maps published by the Sanborn Map Company housed in the collections of the Geography and Map Division. The online checklist is based upon the Library's 1981 publication Fire Insurance Maps in the Library of Congress and will be continually updated to reflect new acquisitions. Browse the collection by location to locate more than 1000 maps for New York.
These maps document the development and status of transportation and communication systems on the national, state, and local level. Transportation maps can depict canal and river systems, cycling routes , railway lines and systems, roads and road networks, and traffic patterns. Communication maps illustrate the location and distribution of telegraph routes, telephone systems and radio coverage.
The Library oversees one of the largest collections of motion pictures in the world. Acquired primarily through copyright deposit, exchange, gift and purchase, the collection spans the entire history of the cinema. The following moving image collections contain materials related to New York.
Work, school, and leisure activities in the United States from 1894 to 1915 are featured in this presentation of motion pictures.
On May 12, 2009, the U. S. Congress authorized a national initiative by passing The Civil Rights History Project Act of 2009 (Public Law 111-19). The law directs the Library of Congress (LOC) and the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) to conduct a survey of existing oral history collections with relevance to the Civil Rights movement to obtain justice, freedom and equality for African Americans and to record new interviews with people who participated in the struggle, over a five year period beginning in 2010.
This site features 341 motion pictures, 81 disc sound recordings, and other related materials, such as photographs and original magazine articles.
The twenty-eight films of this collection include footage of President William McKinley at his second inauguration, of the Pan-American Exposition in Buffalo, New York, of President McKinley at the Pan-American Exposition, and of President McKinley's funeral.
This collection contains forty-five films of New York City dating from 1898 to 1906 from the Paper Print Collection of the Library of Congress.
This collection contains motion pictures of the Spanish-American War and the subsequent Philippine Revolution produced between 1898 and 1901.
The Library of Congress holds the nation's largest public collection of sound recordings (music and spoken word) and radio broadcasts, some 3 million recordings in all.
This collection contains 12 hours of opinions recorded following the bombing of Pearl Harbor from over 200 individuals across the United States. Browse the collection by location to locate interviews from Buffalo and New York City.
This collection contains 118 hours of recordings documenting North American English dialects. The recordings include speech samples, linguistic interviews, oral histories, conversations, and excerpts from public speeches. Browse the collection by location to locate twenty-three recordings from New York.
The September 11, 2001, Documentary Project captures the heartfelt reactions, eyewitness accounts, and diverse opinions of Americans and others in the months that followed the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and United Airlines Flight 93. Browse the collection by location to locate more than forty items related to New York.