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Category: Business & Reference, The U.S. National Archives and Records Administration

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National Archives and Records Administraton The Way We Worked Imagine working in a coal mine. Or in a steel mill. Or at a telephone switchboard. Work and workplaces have gone through enormous transformations between the mid 19th and late 20th centuries. You can view these changes through photographs held by the National Archives and Records Administration. These historical photographs document: The distinctiveness of America's workforce was shaped by many factors—immigration and ethnicity, slavery and racial segregation, wage labor and technology, gender roles, class, as well as ideals of freedom and equality. Most importantly, these images honor those who built this country—the working men and women of America.

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Guns, tanks, and bombs were the principal weapons of World War II, but there were other, more subtle forms of warfare as well. Words, posters, and films waged a constant battle for the hearts and minds of the American citizenry just as surely as military weapons engaged the enemy. Persuading the American public became a wartime industry, almost as important as the manufacturing of bullets and planes. The Government launched an aggressive propaganda campaign with clearly articulated goals and strategies to galvanize public support, and it recruited some of the nation's foremost intellectuals, artists, and filmmakers to wage the war on that front.

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Federal Designs: Symbolism Symbols are an important part of America`s design heritage. They establish and reinforce the national identity and patriotism. In some cases, American symbols are based on recognized associations. The ideals of Greek democracy, the power of Imperial Rome, or the refinements of European fashion frequently are reflected in Federal designs. At other times and for other purposes, designers created icons using images unique to this new country, to this new form of government, and to America`s aspirations to world power.

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