Press/Journalists

Press Release
February 24, 2006

National Archives and Google Launch Pilot Project to Digitize and Offer Historic Films Online

These videos are now available on the National Archives' YouTube Channel.

Washington, D.C. and Mountain View, Calif. – Feb. 24, 2006 – Archivist of the United States Allen Weinstein and Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) Co-Founder and President of Technology Sergey Brin today announced the launch of a pilot program to make holdings of the National Archives available for free online. This non-exclusive agreement will enable researchers and the general public to access a diverse collection of historic movies, documentaries and other films from the National Archives via Google Video (video.google.com/nara.html) as well as the National Archives web site (www.archives.gov).

"This is an important step for the National Archives to achieve its goal of becoming an archives without walls," said Professor Weinstein. "Our new strategic plan emphasizes the importance of providing access to records anytime, anywhere. This is one of many initiatives that we are launching to make our goal a reality. For the first time, the public will be able to view this collection of rare and unusual films on the Internet."

"Today, we've begun to make the extraordinary historic films of the National Archives available to the world for the first time online," said Sergey Brin, co-founder and president of technology at Google. "Students and researchers whether in San Francisco or Bangladesh can watch remarkable video such as World War II newsreels and the story of Apollo 11 - the historic first landing on the Moon."

The pilot program undertaken by the National Archives and Google features 101 films from the audiovisual collections preserved at the Archives. Highlights of the pilot project include:

  • The earliest film preserved in the National Archives holdings by Thomas Armat, "Carmencita - Spanish Dance," featuring the famous Spanish Gypsy dancer,1894 (http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=6020302018400450975&q=Carmencita+-+Spanish+Dance);
  • A representative selection of U.S. government newsreels, documenting World War II, 1941-45 (http://video.google.com/videosearch?q=owner%3Anara+type%3Aworld_war_II&so=0)
  • A sampling of documentaries produced by NASA on the history of the spaceflight program (http://video.google.com/videosearch?q=owner%3Anara+type%3Anasa&so=0);
  • Motion picture films, primarily from the 1930s, that document the history and establishment of a nationwide system of national and state parks.  Included is early footage of modern Native American activities, Boulder Dam, documentation of water and wind erosion, Civilian Conservation Corps workers, and the establishment of the Tennessee Valley Authority.  A 1970 film documents the expansion of recreational programs for inner city youth across the nation (http://video.google.com/videosearch?q=owner%3Anara+type%3Aparks&so=0).

The National Archives and Google are exploring the possibilities of expanding the on-line film collection and making the Archives extensive textual holdings available via the Internet.

About the National Archives
The National Archives and Records Administration, an independent federal agency, is the nation's record keeper. Founded in 1934, its mission is unique —to serve American democracy by safeguarding and preserving the records of our Government, ensuring that the people can discover, use, and learn from this documentary heritage. We ensure continuing access to the essential documentation of the rights of American citizens and the actions of their government.  We support democracy, promote civic education, and facilitate historical understanding of our national experience.  The National Archives meets a wide range of information needs, among them helping people to trace their families' history, making it possible for veterans to prove their entitlement to medical and other benefits, and preserving original White House records. The National Archives carries out its mission through a nationwide network of archives, records centers, and Presidential Libraries, and on the Internet at www.archives.gov.

About Google Inc.
Google's innovative search technologies connect millions of people around the world with information every day. Founded in 1998 by Stanford Ph.D. students Larry Page and Sergey Brin, Google today is a top web property in all major global markets. Google's targeted advertising program provides businesses of all sizes with measurable results, while enhancing the overall web experience for users. Google is headquartered in Silicon Valley with offices throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia. For more information, visit www.google.com.

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For PRESS information, contact the National Archives Public Affairs staff at (202) 357-5300, or Nathan Tyler, Google Inc. at (650) 253-4311, e-mail: nate@google.com.

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