Whereas: Stories from the People’s House

#AskAnArchivist about Records Search

Navigation of Mississippi River/tiles/non-collection/p/pm_008imgtile1.xml Image courtesy of the National Archives and Records Administration
About this record 
This petition from Illinois dates to 1836 and includes a detailed representation of the Mississippi River.
On October 5, House Archivist Robin Reeder unveiled a major new website feature and answered dozens of questions during #AskAnArchivist Day on Twitter. Records Search, a new feature on History, Art & Archives, showcases a selection of official records of the U.S. House of Representatives.

The will of the people, the history of the country, the work of the U.S. House of Representatives—each can be traced in the documents that compose the institution’s official records. House records reflect how citizens and their elected representatives address, advocate, and legislate for important issues. Users can explore a selection of the records—from the everyday to the extraordinary—of the committees and officers of the U.S. House of Representatives using Records Search.

Each record in Records Search has basic information about the record and a brief description that places it in institutional and historical context. Not only that, but these additional features are available:

  • Each state and U.S. territory has at least one document related to its history
  • Never-before-seen documents are available from the holdings of the House of Representatives
  • PDFs of records can be downloaded and are searchable (when possible), facilitating classroom use
  • Hi-res images of the documents with zoom capability allow close examination and analysis of each document
  • Related subjects make it easy to find records about the same topic
  • Related links provide additional context for the records and connections with content on the rest of the site
  • Regular additions of new content keep the site fresh and encourage future exploration and discovery

During #AskAnArchivist, Robin responded to tweets with some of the documents featured on Records Search.

Check out Records Search for even more engaging and remarkable records of the House of Representatives.