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America's Story from America's LibraryMeet Amazing AmericansJump Back in TimeExplore the StatesJoin America at PlaySee, Hear and Sing

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The Great Hall of the Thomas Jefferson Building, Library of Congress

The dome of the Thomas Jefferson Building, Library of Congress


This Web site is brought to you from the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C., the largest library in the world and the nation's library.

We hope you will find this Web site entertaining and fun to use. And, of course, we hope you will learn something from it. The site was designed especially with young people in mind, but there are great stories for people of all ages, and we hope children and their families will want to explore this site together.

Here, you can discover what Abraham Lincoln had in his pockets on the night he was assassinated. (You will be surprised.) Or you can read about other "Amazing Americans" such as Buffalo Bill Cody and his "Wild West" show; the heroism of Harriet Tubman, who helped many slaves escape bondage; the music of jazz great Duke Ellington; or the inventions of Thomas Edison. (You will even be able to see his first motion picture!)

If you think break-dancing is a new invention, then visit "Join America at Play," where you'll see a film of an early break-dancer from 1898! Ever hear of a "cloth sandwich"? You'll know what I'm talking about when you read the stories in this section. And, of course, we have many tales to tell about baseball, America's pastime -- from the "Cyclone" (pitcher Cy Young) to Jackie Robinson, a hero both on and off the field.

"Jump Back in Time" and find the settlers who landed on Plymouth Rock. Or jump to a more recent age and read about be-bop, a type of music invented long before hip-hop. Do you know what happened on the day you were born? You can find out here.

Want to travel across the country? Then click on "Explore the States," where you'll find fascinating facts and stories about all the states and Washington, D.C.

And if you've ever wondered what the first cartoons looked like, then click on "See, Hear and Sing." You'll read about a man who in 1896 figured out how to make inanimate objects move. You know about the guitar, the piano and the trumpet, but how about the oud, the zurna and the marimba? These unusual instruments influenced today's modern musical instruments.

If you see something you really like, then "Send a Postcard" to your family and friends, and tell them about it. You'll even get a reward if you successfully complete the Treasure Hunt or Scavenger Hunt.

Be sure to let us know what you think about America's Story from America's Library, and please visit often.

James H. Billington
Librarian of Congress

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