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Library of Congress Research Databases


The Library of Congress (LOC) has a wealth of information that can be very beneficial to those doing family and historical research. Every week their collection grows with information, databases and pictures and many other great features. Here are some of the Collection Highlights showcased on the LOC website:
  • American Memory
  • Prints & Photographs
  • Historic Newspapers
  • Performing Arts
  • Veterans History
  • Sound Recordings
  • Film
  • Maps
  • Manuscripts
One section of the LOC website that I particular like is the Today in History database. You can look at what happened in history today or visit their archives and just put in a date. Just for fun, I went to see what was posted for my birthday which is this month, May 22. Here is part of what is posted, “On May 22, 1802, the first of first ladies, Martha Dandridge Custis Washington died of a severe fever. When she married George Washington in January 1759, she was twenty-seven years old and a widowed mother of two. She was also one of the wealthiest women in Virginia, having inherited some 15,000 acres of farmland from her deceased husband, Daniel Parke Custis.”

Additional databases they have in their Digital Collection include:
  • Children and Families: America's Library
  • Country Studies/Area Handbooks
  • Digital Interlibrary Loan
  • Exhibitions from the Library
  • Folklife Digital Collections
  • Global Legal Information Network
  • Hispanic Digital Collections
  • Local Legacies: Community Roots
  • Manuscript Collections
  • Map Collections
  • Poetry 180: For the School Year
  • Rare Books and Special Collections
  • Today in History
  • Webcasts from the Library
Some of the special projects that the LOC is working on, listed under the American Folklife Center is the Civil Rights History Project, StoryCorps Collection and the Veterans History Project.

As I searched the LOC to see what they had to offer, I was delighted to learn they had a collection of Podcasts, Webcasts and ITunesU. The Slave Narratives is a featured database on the podcasts. It’s description states, “Oral histories and interviews with African Americans who endured the hardships of slavery. These recordings document the first-person accounts of several individuals whose life experiences spanned the period during and after slavery. The podcasts are drawn from several collections in the American Folklife Center Archives, one of the preeminent audio-visual repositories of national and international folklife, history and cultural expressions." Music of all eras are also featured on these databases.

I would encourage you to visit all the databases the LOC has to offer, especially the digital newspapers. There are times when the website is undergoing a maintenance, so if the LOC website is down, please keep returning as it will be up once the maintenance is finished.


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Content copyright © 2014 by Tina Sansone. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Tina Sansone. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Tina Sansone for details.

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