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Introducing the Next Generation National Archives Catalog

Douglas Caddy

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Introducing the Next Generation National Archives Catalog

The National Archives Catalog is getting an upgrade! We are excited to announce a sneak preview of our fully redesigned and modernized online public access Catalog. This new and improved Catalog maximizes our ability to make the records of the National Archives even more accessible. 

Screen capture of the newly redesigned National Archives Catalog. The search term entered is

Preview the new Catalog now.


Our new Catalog is still a work in progress! Over the next several months, we will be introducing new features, including additional advanced and faceted search options, enhanced image viewing, bulk records export, Citizen Archivist contribution enhancements, and much more. More information about the new Catalog and a list of available and upcoming features is available on archives.gov. Stay tuned for more information and updates! 

Color photograph of a group of people working on an airplane. Several people are on the top and sides of the aircraft; a woman is starting to climb the stairs next to the aircraft.

PV-1 is Given Final Checkup at Vega Aircraft Corporation Plant in Burbank, California.

National Archives Identifier 176217239


We look forward to hearing your thoughts about the new and improved search experience. Once you preview the new Catalog, use our survey to let us know what you think


Thank you for giving our new Catalog a try!


A note to our Citizen Archivists: 

Contributing tags, transcriptions, and comments is not yet available in the new Catalog. Continue to make your contributions as usual in the current Catalog (catalog.archives.gov) throughout the beta period. All of your contributions will be migrated to the new Catalog throughout the development process. Stay tuned for more information and details about Citizen Archivist contribution enhancements in the new Catalog. 

Black and white photograph of assembly line workers pulling an airplane out of the plant.

A Douglas A-20 attack bomber leaves the assembly line at the Long Beach, Calif., plant for transfer to the flight line and a test flight before delivery to the Army., ca. 10/1942. National Archives Identifier 196398 


In our last newsletter, we introduced a series of photographs from the West Point Military Academy, and encouraged you to tag details found in each photograph. Many thanks to all of our citizen archivists who answered the call to help tag these photographs.


We can still use your help! You can help tag features and details found in these West Point photographs. Add tags that point out location, rank, activities, equipment, vehicles, clothing, uniforms, animals, and more. Need help? See our “What Makes a Good Tag” tutorial.


In addition to adding tags, Citizen Archivist Dahlengret added helpful information about the photographs in the comments section: 

Image from the Catalog showing a black and white photograph of a track and field coach with a team member. A user contributed comment is featured that identifies the coaches accomplishments.

Photograph of Army Track and Field Coach Leo Novak with Team Member National Archives Identifier 239940361

Image from the Catalog of a black and white photograph of a football player crouched on the ground holding a football. A user contributed comment identifies the player as Roy T. Evans, class of 1958.

Photograph of Roy T. Evans, in Football Uniform, West Point "A" Letterman National Archives Identifier 239941411

Every comment and keyword tag added helps to make these records more searchable and accessible online. Get started tagging!


New to the Citizen Archivist program? Learn how to register and get started

View our latest missions on the Citizen Archivist dashboard


Start your research on History Hub

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Have a question? Find your answer on History Hub!


Do you have questions related to Hispanic Heritage Month(September 15 - October 15)?  Bring those questions to History Hub!

Where can I find statistics on Hispanic and Latino contributions to the U.S.?

Did you know September 17 was Constitution Day?  Learn more about the history behind the Constitution at History Hub:

Where can I find the voting record of the 1787 Constitutional Convention?

Interested in researching railroad records?

Where can I find my grandfather's railroad retirement records?

Check out our recent newsletter for more details, information, and instructions about using History Hub for your research.


Citizen Archivists, there's a group just for you!  You can share tips and strategies, find new challenges, and get support for your work.  Get started with our poll: What kinds of records do you like to transcribe?


Make History Hub your first stop! You can ask—or answer—questions on History Hub, or see if your question has already been answered.

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Questions or comments? Email us at catalog@nara.gov

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This is good news about the NextGen of NARA. I only hope that the JFK Assassination audio material will be part of the "NextGen" of digitized content. Denis Morissette contacted NARA more than three years ago and received what seemed to be an encouraging reply about the coming release of "Record Group No. 272" (JFKA-related items).

Here's what NARA told Denis Morissette in early 2019:

”We do have on our Branch's work plan for this fiscal year an intention to digitize the audio recordings of the Warren Commission collection (NARA RG # 272), but outside of that we do not have current plans to systematically digitize other JFK audio collections."

Here are some of the items I found when I did a search of the new "NextGen" NARA (beta) Catalog:

https://preview.catalog.archives.gov/search=Sound Recordings

https://preview.catalog.archives.gov/search=JFK-Assassination/Record-Group-Number-272/Textual Records

Here's Denis' EF thread from 2019:


Edited by David Von Pein
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