A Message to the Archival Community

The National Archives and Records Administration exists to provide access to the records that document the history of the United States. However, sometimes history happens around us and forces us to change the way we approach our work, at least for the time being. All of us are living through a historic crisis as we adapt to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. We at the National Archives are keenly aware of the uncertainty faced by our staff and our colleagues in the archival community and cultural and educational organizations. Institutions and individuals are facing unprecedented challenges in an effort to continue their regular operations.

This isn’t easy for any of us. We stand with all of you in our efforts to protect the health and welfare of our families, staff and organization members, archivists, researchers, educators, and other stakeholders. We are also doing our best to continue services you rely on in a highly fluid and challenging environment. Like other institutions and businesses, the National Archives has closed all public spaces and cancelled all events and programs until further notice. As of March 23, all National Archives buildings are closed to staff as well except for those performing emergency functions. National Archives staff are teleworking to the greatest extent possible, which means that we are still operating and available to assist, although some of our capabilities are limited by current circumstances. 

A Bell System switchboard where overseas calls are handled. December 22,1943 National Archives Identifier 1633445

Importantly, many of our services are available online:

Where possible, we will also conduct public events and outreach activities online and through virtual meetings. We will regularly update the event calendar with current information. Follow the National Archives on Facebook (USNationalArchives) and Twitter (@USNatArchives) for our current status. Or share your thoughts here on my blog. 

We will continue to share updates about what we’re doing and the services we can provide as the spring progresses and circumstances change. We send our best wishes for your continued good health and wellbeing and that of your communities during this unprecedented time.

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