National Archives at Kansas City

We the People Exhibit

We the People is a free permanent exhibition on display at the National Archives at Kansas City. The exhibition is open for self-guided tours Tuesday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

We the People focuses on how records impact the lives of every American. Alongside the stories of the great and powerful, the millions of records in the holdings of the National Archives give insight into the lives of ordinary people. Nearly all Americans can find themselves, their neighbors, their ancestors, or their community in the records of the National Archives.

The exhibition primarily features records from the holdings of the National Archives at Kansas City. It is divided into five sections:

  • We the People introduces visitors to the process of becoming an American and reveals details about immigrants seeking citizenship in the United States. In addition, the exhibition features information about the first Americans and family history research.
  • Form a More Perfect Union provides a glimpse into records that show the evolution of our democracy. Both milestone documents and everyday records tell the story of our triumphs and struggles to become “one nation, with liberty and justice for all.”
  • Provide for the Common Defense showcases records of our nation’s activities during wartime, both on the homefront and abroad. America’s diplomatic and military records paint a vivid picture of heroism, inspiration, and sacrifice.
  • Promote the General Welfare focuses on records that open a window on the human spirit and ingenuity needed to realize the promise of America as envisioned by the Founders.
  • To Ourselves and Our Posterity aims to illustrate that as the nation’s record grows and changes, so does the National Archives. We preserve the records that tell America’s story and make them available to you.