Historic Photos

Collection by U.S. Government Publishing Office

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GPO opened on March 4, 1861 and has continued to carry out its mission of Keeping America Informed on the three branches of the Federal Government.

U.S. Government Publishing Office
On September 22, 1862, GPO undertook one of its most significant printing jobs ever—production of the preliminary version of the Emancipation Proclamation. After President Lincoln issued the general orders, GPO employees worked late into the evening to print 15,000 copies. This copy contains a printer’s proofing marks; those corrections were made to the final version of the Emancipation Proclamation issued in 1863. September 22, Historical Photos, Museums, Mississippi, Lincoln, Printer, History Photos, Printers, Museum

On September 22, 1862, GPO undertook one of its most significant printing jobs ever—production of the preliminary version of the Emancipation Proclamation. After President Lincoln issued the general orders, GPO employees worked late into the evening to print 15,000 copies. This copy contains a printer’s proofing marks; those corrections were made to the final version of the Emancipation Proclamation issued in 1863.

Cool moment from July 1969. Entertainer Bob Hope stopped by the GPO Traveling Bookstore at the Summerfest in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. About 30,000 people visited GPO's exhibit of newly released Marine Corps Vietnam Combat lithograph prints. GPO's Public Information Specialist George McFarlane presented one of those prints to Bob Hope. Public Information, Bob Hope, Milwaukee Wisconsin, Marine Corps, Historical Photos, Exhibit, Vietnam, Traveling, In This Moment

Cool moment from July 1969. Entertainer Bob Hope stopped by the GPO Traveling Bookstore at the Summerfest in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. About 30,000 people visited GPO's exhibit of newly released Marine Corps Vietnam Combat lithograph prints. GPO's Public Information Specialist George McFarlane presented one of those prints to Bob Hope.

“The first shipment of U. Government documents from GPO to libraries in the Federal Depository Library Program ( was on July 1895 and contained 11 Congressional publications. Us Government, Library Programs, Historical Photos, Libraries, July 17, Public Spaces, Museums, Twitter, Books

The first shipment of US Government documents from GPO to Federal depository libraries was July 17, 1895 and contained 11 congressional pubs.

GPO’s laboratory in the Employees tested type metal for any impurities before it could be melted into printing type. Types Of Printing, Historical Photos, 1920s, Metal, Prints, Photography, Fotografie, History Photos, Photography Business

GPO’s laboratory in the 1920s. Employees tested type metal for any impurities before it could be melted into printing type.

GPO headquarters on North Capitol Street in Washington, DC. Historical Photos, Washington Dc, Louvre, America, Street, Building, Travel, History Photos, Buildings

GPO headquarters on North Capitol Street in Washington, DC. in 1904.

GPO trucks outside agency headquarters in Washington, DC in the early ready to make deliveries to Congress. Flea Market Finds, Historical Photos, Washington Dc, The Outsiders, Old Things, Street View, Trucks, Collections, History Photos

GPO trucks outside agency headquarters in Washington, DC in the early 1900s ready to make deliveries to Congress.

During National Library Week in Public Printer Harrison and Superintendent of Documents Carper Buckley (both on the right) join Defense Secretary Melvin Laird (center) and others at the Pentagon promoting military publications published by GPO. Library Week, Pentagon, Secretary, Historical Photos, Printer, Suit Jacket, Public, Join, Military

During National Library Week in 1969, Public Printer Harrison and Superintendent of Documents Carper Buckley (both on the right) join Defense Secretary Melvin Laird (center) and others at the Pentagon promoting military publications published by GPO.

GPO stables in 1903 on H Street in Washington, DC. This is how employees used to deliver government information to Congress. Stables, Historical Photos, Washington Dc, Louvre, America, Street, Building, Travel, Horse Stables

GPO stables in 1903 on H Street in Washington, DC. This is how employees used to deliver government information to Congress.

GPO's Plant in the Employees are working with tabulating card presses. Large Prints, Historical Photos, Letterpress, Book Art, History, 1930s, Plant, Image, History Photos

GPO's Plant in the 1930s. Employees are working with tabulating card presses.