Federal Offices & Museums of Interest to Genealogists Closed During the Government Shutdown

How does the government shutdown effect genealogical research? Besides the obvious downside if you happen to be a government employee with no income expected during the shutdown, there are many other direct effects on us. Following are a few:

  • The National Archives are closed, including the ever-popular National Archives Building in Washington, D.C., the main research facility in College Park, MD; regional National Archives branches throughout the USA, presidential libraries, and archives at the U.S. service academies. It’s said that the Federal Records Centers and the Federal Register are open.
  • Thousands of federal historians are considered non-critical and are on furlough.
  • The Library of Congress is closed – as well as its websites – with the exception of the legislative information sites THOMAS.gov and Congress.gov.
  • All Freedom of Information processing is temporarily suspended until some settlement is reached.
  • Historical offices of the various federal agencies are expected to be closed.
  • As we’re seeing on all the TV News Channels, he National Parks Service is closed. All the national parks and historic sites are closed. You can’t even walk through the various historic battlefields so popular with tourists.
  • All of the Smithsonian museums are closed, as well as other federal museums scattered acroos the USA.
  • The National Endowment for the Humanities is not processing any applications or transactions. The NEH website will not be updated.
  • The National Historical Publications and Records Commission is closed. The website Grants.gov will continue to accept applications, however.

I’m sure that there are other places that are also effected by the shutdown. Now let’s just hope that some compromise is reached asap and we can get back to work.

Thanks to the History News Network for most of the above places. Their website also lists a number of places that are open.

Author: Leland Meitzler

Leland K. Meitzler founded Heritage Quest in 1985, and has worked as Managing Editor of both Heritage Quest Magazine and The Genealogical Helper. He currently operates Family Roots Publishing Company (www.FamilyRootsPublishing.com), writes daily at GenealogyBlog.com, writes the weekly Genealogy Newsline, conducts the annual Salt Lake Christmas Tour to the Family History Library, and speaks nationally, having given over 2000 lectures since 1983.

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