Exhibits in the Washington, DC, Metro AreaFind an Event
“Records of Rights” explores how Americans have worked to realize their nation’s ideals of freedom. The exhibit showcases original and facsimile National Archives documents and uses an innovative 17-foot touch screen interactive table to illustrate how Americans throughout our history have debated issues such as citizenship, free speech, voting rights, and equal opportunity.
Documents from the Pentagon Papers, officially titled “Report of the Office of the Secretary of Defense Vietnam Task Force,” are on view. In June 1971, small portions of the report were leaked to the press and widely distributed. David M. Rubenstein Gallery
1297 Magna Carta
The 1297 Magna Carta, on permanent loan from David M. Rubenstein, is featured in the “Records of Rights” exhibit. David M. Rubenstein Gallery
- Declaration of Independence
- Bill of Rights
“The Charters of Freedom: Our Nation’s Founding Documents” takes a fresh look at the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights. Using historical documents from the holdings of the National Archives, we answer two key questions about the Charters: "How did they happen?" and "Why are they important?" Rotunda
“The Public Vaults” invites visitors into virtual stack areas to discover historic documents, films, maps, and photographs from the National Archives. A rare print on parchment of the Declaration of Independence–made from the original copperplate engraved by William J. Stone in 1823—is on display for a limited time. Courtesy of David M. Rubenstein
"Remembering Vietnam" in the Lawrence F. O'Brien Gallery
Explore 12 critical episodes in the Vietnam War from its World War II origins to the Fall of Saigon. These key events and turning points trace the policies and decisions made by the architects of the conflict, and the forces that drove them. Iconic and newly discovered documents, films, images, and artifacts along with insights from veterans, civilians, and historians shed light on the complex history of U.S. involvement in Southeast Asia. Open through January 6, 2019.
Presented in part by the Lawrence F. O’Brien Family, Pritzker Military Museum & Library, AARP, FedEx Corporation, and the National Archives Foundation. Additional support provided by the Maris S. Cuneo Foundation, The Eliasberg Family Foundation, Inc., and HISTORY®.
Featured Document Display: Alexander Hamilton Documents
Can't get tickets to Hamilton? Come see the original documents from the Founding Father whose life and legacy inspired the musical. To mark the the run of Hamilton: An American Musical at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, a collection of rare Alexander Hamilton documents related to lyrics from the hip-hop musical sensation will be on display. These historic records relate to Hamilton’s service at the Battle of Yorktown, participation in the Constitutional Convention, appointment as first Secretary of the Treasury, fatal duel with Aaron Burr, and his wife Eliza Hamilton’s efforts to preserve his papers after his death. East Rotunda Gallery. Through September 19, 2018.
Special Exhibit in College Park, Maryland
Auditorium Lobby at the National Archives Research Center:
"Hidden Treasure" features historic panoramic photographs taken by topographers with the U.S. Geological Survey from 1910 to 1932 in the Alaska.
Dozens of exhibits can be experienced online. Visit Now!
Records of Rights
Explore records of the National Archives documenting the ongoing struggle of Americans to define, attain, and protect their rights.
Discovery and Recovery: Preserving Iraqi Jewish Heritage
Startling evidence of the once vibrant Jewish life in Iraq came to light in May 2003—over 2,700 books and tens of thousands of documents were discovered in the flooded basement of the Iraqi intelligence headquarters by a U.S. Army team.
To the Brink: JFK and the Cuban Missile Crisis
An exhibit marking the 50th anniversary of the Cuban Missile Crisis.
“What’s Cooking, Uncle Sam?”
Unearth the stories and personalities behind the increasingly complex programs and legislation that affect what we eat. Learn about the Government’s extraordinary efforts, successes, and failures to change our eating habits. Find out why the Government wanted us to “Eat the Carp,” “Share the Meat,” and “Know Our Onions.” There are over 100 original records in the exhibit—including folk songs, war posters, educational films, and even seed packets. From Revolutionary War rations to Cold War cultural exchanges, discover the multiple ways that food has occupied the hearts and minds of Americans and their Government. Online exhibit
All events listed in the calendar are free unless noted.