National Archives for Developers

The National Archives promotes the innovative application of agency data in public and private sectors. This page connects citizen developers with the tool they need to unlock government data.

Have suggestions, ideas, or questions? Please contact us at

On This Page




We welcome your feedback and suggestions on any of our GitHub repositories. If you’d like to contribute you can participate in one of three ways:

  1. In GitHub: Discuss content via a repository’s issues page. You can browse and participate in existing discussions or open a new issue to start a new conversation. Before submitting a new issue, please check to make sure a similar issue isn't already open. If one is, please contribute to that issue thread with your feedback. If you don’t have a GitHub account, you can get started here. Read more about GitHub’s issues feature. If you’d like to make a direct content edit, you can submit a pull request.
  2. Via email: If you prefer not to set up a GitHub account, we also welcome your input at The US National Archives GitHub team monitors this address and will add suggestions to this repo’s issues page.

Contribution Policy

You are encouraged to share your comments, ideas, and concerns on any of our GitHub repositories. Please be aware of the following policies for the National Archives' GitHub account:

  • NARA will remove contributions that are clearly off-topic, that promote services or products, or that promote or oppose any political party, person campaigning for elected office, or any ballot proposition
  • NARA will remove comments that contain abusive, vulgar, offensive, threatening or harassing language, personal attacks of any kind, or offensive terms that target specific individuals or groups.
  • NARA will remove contributions with personally identifiable information not related to the repository such as social security numbers, addresses, and telephone numbers.
  • Contributions provided in no way constitute a legal or official notice or comment to NARA or any official or employee of NARA for any purpose.
  • Contributions may be treated as a federal record.
  • The content of all contributions are visible to the public, thus submissions should not contain anything you do not wish to broadcast to the general public.
  • Your comments are welcome at any time. We will moderate comments between 8:30 am and 5:30 pm Monday through Friday, excluding federal holidays. We intend to moderate comments submitted at other times as soon as possible on the next business day.
  • Gratuitous links to sites are viewed as spam and may result in the comment being removed.
  • The content of contributions may be released into the public domain, so do not submit anything you do not wish to be broadcast to the general public.
  • NARA does not discriminate against any views, but reserves the right to remove posted comments that do not adhere to these standards.
  • Members of the media are asked to pose your questions to the NARA Public Affairs Office through their normal channels and to refrain from submitting questions here as comments. Media questions or comments will not be posted. NARA Public Affairs can be reached at 202-357-5300

Privacy Notice

GitHub is not hosted by the National Archives and Records Administration and thus the privacy policies of NARA do NOT apply. For more information, read the GitHub Privacy Statement. NARA retains records of the content on its portion of GitHub, as provided for in our records retention schedules and mandated by the Federal Records Act. These records include user comments and any personally identifiable information a commenter shares with NARA. Because these records are collected from a public web site, they may be disclosed to others and used by NARA in the conduct of agency business. Please do not share information such as social security numbers, birth dates, or other private information that you do not want to make available to others. NARA disclaims any liability for any loss or damage resulting from any comments posted on this page

Application Programming Interfaces (APIs)

  • National Archives Catalog API
    The National Archives Catalog API is a read-write web API for the National Archives Catalog. This API can be used to perform fielded search of archival metadata, bulk export of metadata and digital media, and post contributions to records. The dataset includes archival descriptions, authorities, digital media, web pages, and public contributions (such as tags, transcriptions, and comments).
  • The Federal Register API is a fully open source project. The source code for the main site is available on GitHub, as well as the chef cookbooks for maintaining the servers, and the WordPress themes and configuration.
  • Executive Orders from 1994 to 2012
    The President of the United States manages the operations of the Executive branch of Government through Executive orders. After the President signs an executive order, the White House sends it to the Office of Federal Register (OFR). The OFR numbers each order consecutively as part of a series, and publishes it in the daily Federal Register shortly after receipt. This data is available as as an interactive dataset and API through
  • Digital Public Library of American (DPLA) API
    The Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) is a universal digital public library, providing a single online access point for digital collections containing America's cultural, historical and scientific heritage. The National Archives participates as a leading content provider and has contributed 1.9 million digital images to the DPLA, including our nation’s founding documents, photos from the Documerica Photography Project of the 1970’s, World War II posters, Mathew Brady Civil War photographs, and a wide variety of documents that define our human and civil rights. The DPLA API allows you to build applications and tools for enhanced learning and content discovery. More information available at:
  • Flickr API
    The National Archives has made more than 10,000 images of records available on Flickr. As a participating institution in the Commons on Flickr, the National Archives makes available images of documents, photographs, and other records with no known copy restrictions. These records can be accessed through the Flickr API.


  • National Archives Catalog
    This dataset contains the archival descriptions and authority records from the National Archives Catalog, including the URLs for digital copies of records and data from citizen archivist contributions.
  • 1950 Census
    This dataset includes the metadata index, the population schedule and other forms, the enumeration district maps, and the enumeration district descriptions for the 1950 Census records.  
  • 1940 Census
    This dataset contains the the metadata index, the population schedules, the enumeration district maps, and the enumeration district descriptions for the 1940 Census records.
  • Code of Federal Regulations
    This dataset contains the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) in XML format. The CFR is the codification of the general and permanent regulations of the Federal Government published in the Federal Register.
  • Federal Register
    This dataset contains the daily Federal Register in XML format. The Federal Register is the official legal newspaper of the United States Government.
  • United States Government Manual
    The U.S. Government Manual is the official handbook of the U.S. Government and available in XML format.
  • Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States
    This is the official public Presidential writings, addresses, and remarks in XML format.
  • Executive Orders of the Presidents of the United States
    The dataset contains the official documents through which the President of the United States manages the operations of the Federal Government in CSV format, and also as a combined interactive dataset, and API.
  • More Datasets.

Crowdsourcing Tools

  • Transcribr
    This Drupal distribution includes all modules and themes required to emulate the National Archives Transcription Pilot Project, which allows the public to transcribe historical documents to make them more accessible to the public.