National Archives Videos

Did you know that the National Archives has a YouTube channel?  Well, it isn’t actually the National Archives’ channel but the result of a non-profit group that has purchased and posted DVD versions of several of the National Archives’ videos. 

Does it seem odd that they would purchase DVDs for public domain videos?  Several of the Archives’ videos are available only in low resolution and you are “encouraged” to purchase the videos from instead.  This seems wrong considering that the videos should be made available to all taxpayers and citizens without having to pay for them.

The National Archives’ fantastic collection of public domain videos includes all sorts of treasures such as footage from Adm. Byrd’s 1939-41 journey to Antarctica, a 1970 nature film depicting the four seasons at Yellowstone National Park, and a vintage film from the late 1940s about counterfeiting and its suppression.  Add to that Nixon’s Watergate speech and footage of the Hindenburg disaster.  There are all sorts of amazing things there.


The twenty movies that Public.Resource.Org has posted on YouTube are here.  I’ll share with you one very worthwhile treat, which I enjoyed this evening:  Bob Hope’s 1967 Christmas Special from Thailand and Vietnam.  One of Hope’s funny lines from the stage of one of the camps in Thailand: “They say that Thailand has never been conquered.  No wonder, nobody can get through that traffic.”  Ah, so it was that way back then, too?

Hope you enjoy this classic.


0 thoughts on “National Archives Videos

  1. wow. You are awesome to bring all this to our attention. It really was amazing and very disturbing to see the Hindenburg video. You know Chris, I remember that particular Bob Hope special from Thailand. Thanks for posting it. Shall email it to M, he loved to watch Bob Hope shows.

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