Free NARA Documents on

Are you looking for documents by the Continental Congress, court records related to the Amistad, details on the assassination of President Lincoln, or FBI investigative case files from World War I?  You now have ready access to documents like these, which capture important American ideals and events that have shaped our country.  More than 20 groupings of NARA records are available for free from any computer on  Just look for the red “FREE” label next to the links on the Footnote listing of Original Historical Documents (

As you may already know, the National Archives has teamed up with, a web site that features searchable digital copies of original documents.  This partnership is now providing researchers with access to over 100 series from the National Archives.  To access all of the NARA records on free of charge, just visit from the research room at any NARA location across the country.  Happy researching!

From the Mathew B Brady Collection of Civil War Photographs

From the Mathew B Brady Collection of Civil War Photographs

This entry was posted in Digitization, Education, Genealogy / Family History, Online Research, Photographs, Research and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Free NARA Documents on

  1. Gavin Baker says:

    So — NARA has uploaded some documents to which are not freely accessible to anybody (from any computer) — is that right?


  2. Jill says:


    That’s a good question. There are images of NARA records on that are available online for a fee if you aren’t at a NARA facility, but NARA didn’t do the uploading or the scanning/digitizing. Any materials that we (NARA) digitize ourselves go into ARC and are available to anybody anywhere for free.

    As a NARA partner, has scanned and uploaded the images of NARA records (mostly from NARA microfilm publications) as well as indexed them. After five years NARA may post these images and the indexed info via our online catalog for free. Read more about this partnership online at


  3. Historyman says:

    Gavin: Here are NARA records that are Free from any computer, anywhere found among the offerings at Footnote,com. Sign up for a free membership to improve your experiencce there:

    Amistad – Federal court records FREE 100% COMPLETE
    NARA M1753. The district and circuit court records pertaining to the claims of salvage for the Spanish schooner Amistad, seized in 1839 by the…

    Amistad – Supreme Court records FREE 100% COMPLETE
    NARA M2012. This Supreme Court case deals with issues of salvage of the Amistad, a ship carrying slaves seized by the US Navy in 1839, and…

    Brady Civil War Photos FREE 100% COMPLETE
    NARA T252.and NARA 111-B Mathew B Brady coordinated a team of photographers to help him document the Civil War, resulting in over 5,600 portraits,…

    Constitutional Convention Records FREE 100% COMPLETE 100% COMPLETE
    NARA M866. Journals of proceedings, early drafts, and other papers relating to the formation of the US Constitution.

    Continental Congress – Papers FREE 100% COMPLETE
    NARA M247. The correspondence, journals, committee reports, and records of the Continental Congress (1774-1789).

    Continental Congress – Misc FREE 100% COMPLETE
    NARA M332. These documents were misplaced, overlooked, or found in private hands when the records of the Papers of the Continental Congress…

    Domestic Letters of the Department of State FREE 100% COMPLETE
    NARA M40. Copies of miscellaneous letters sent from the US State Department between 1784 and 1906.
    Search – Browse

    Flossenburg Entry Registers FREE 50% COMPLETE NEW UPDATED
    NARA M1935. Inmate entry registers for Flossenburg Concentration Camp, 1938-1945

    Foreign Letters of the Continental Congress FREE 100% COMPLETE
    NARA M61. Copies of letters sent from the US Department of State and The Continental Congress to ministers and consuls abroad.

    George Washington Correspondence FREE 100% COMPLETE
    NARA M570. Copies of letters sent by President Washington, primarily to Secretaries of State John Jay, Thomas Jefferson, Edmund Randolph, and…

    Gorrell’s History – AEF Air Service FREE 98% COMPLETE
    NARA M990. Historical narratives, reports, photographs, and other records that document administrative, technical, and tactical activities of…

    Hesse Crown Jewels Court-Martial FREE 100% COMPLETE
    NARA M1899. Trial records of three American officers charged with stealing $2.5 million in jewels and property from Kronberg Castle in 1945.

    Lincoln Assassination Papers FREE 100% COMPLETE
    NARA M599. Reports, correspondence, and testimony of persons connected with the Lincoln assassination trial. Also exhibits, court martial

    Mauthausen Death Books FREE 50% COMPLETE NEW UPDATED
    NARA T990. Death Books from the Mauthausen concentration camp in upper Austria

    Photos – Coolidge FREE 100% COMPLETE
    NARA M867. About 400 captioned photographs taken before, during, and after the presidency of Calvin Coolidge, 30th president of the United States.

    Photos – Eisenhower FREE 100% COMPLETE
    NARA M868. About 500 captioned photographs taken before and during the presidency of Dwight D Eisenhower, 34th president of the United States.

    Photos – Fine Arts Commission, Series G FREE 100% COMPLETE
    NARA M1148. and NARA 66-G. General Photographs of the Fine Arts Commission (Series G), ca. 1650-1950.

    Photos – Franklin D Roosevelt FREE 100% COMPLETE
    NARA M865. About 650 captioned photographs taken before and during the presidency of Franklin D Roosevelt, 32nd president of the United States.

    Photos – Truman FREE 100% COMPLETE
    NARA M835. About 1,000 captioned photographs taken before, during, and after the presidency of Harry S Truman, 33rd president of the United States.

    Photos – Vietnam War Marine Corps FREE 100% COMPLETE
    NARA 127-GVC US Defense Department photos of activities in Vietnam, including aerial views, Vietnamese civilians, weapons, combat scenes, and other actions…

    Photos – Vietnam Marine Corps (B/W) FREE 100% COMPLETE
    NARA 127-GVB US Defense Department black & white photographs of activities in Vietnam, 1962-75. Subjects include equipment, facilities, officials,…

    Photos – WW II Japanese FREE 100% COMPLETE
    NARA M1733. Photographs of Japanese Soldiers and of Allied Prisoners of War, 1942-1945

    Project Blue Book – UFO Investigations FREE 100% COMPLETE
    NARA T1206. Records and case files relating to investigations, collected by the Office of Special Investigations, of sightings of unidentified…

    Ratified Amendments to the US Constitution FREE 100% COMPLETE
    NARA M1518. These records from sixteen rolls of NARA microfilm relate to each constitutional amendment as ratified by state legislatures.

    WWII Captured German Records FREE 2% COMPLETE NEW UPDATED
    NARA A3355. Lists and Registers of German Concentration Camp Inmates, compiled 1946-1958, documenting the period 1942-1945.

    WWII German Documents Among War Crimes Records FREE 65% COMPLETE NEW UPDATED
    NARA T1021. German documents predating May 8, 1945, found among the War Crimes Records of the U.S. Judge Advocate Division, Europe.

    WWII Nuernberg Interrogation Records FREE 90% COMPLETE NEW UPDATED
    NARA M1270. Transcribed interrogation records relate to the prosecution of war criminals in proceedings at Nuernberg, 1945-47.

    WWII US Air Force Photos FREE 88% COMPLETE
    NARA-342-FH This series of photographic images documents an important era in US military aviation history, especially activities of the US Air Force…
    Footnote offers “Free” material from other sources, as well.


  4. Betsy says:

    If you have access to research materials through the Ebsco / EBSCOhost suite of databases, check to see if “Footnote – History and Genealogy Archives” is listed. Ebsco is now the institutional distributor for Footnote, and access was recently added through my institution’s Ebsco login.
    Access to the Ebsco databases may also be through a state-level portal, such as GALILEO here in Georgia, available through colleges and public libraries.


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