Snow birds have a picnic on the beach near Sarasota, Florida. January 1941.

General Robert E. Lee, a week after his surrender (which effectively ended the Civil War). April 16, 1865.

College students “stuff” a Volkswagen Beetle, c. 1965. United States.

Lou Gehrig. July 4, 1939. 

Two years after this photo was taken, Lou Gehrig would pass away due to ALS. This photo was taken moments after gaving his famous farewell speech, saying, “I might have been given a bad break, but I’ve got an an awful lot to live for. Thank you.”

Buses leave Washington D.C. after the March On Washington, August 28, 1963. 

This piece was done as a contribution to NPR, covering the 50th anniversary of this event, a major milestone in the Civil Rights Movement.

The All-American. Late 1950s or early 1960s. 

Drought-stricken farmer and family, August 1939.

American family. Approximately 1950.

The view from New Jersey: A man peers across the Hudson River into Manhattan from his perch on the George Washington Bridge on December 22, 1936

On the morning of December 21, 1970, a limo pulled up to the White House and one of Elvis’s bodyguards handed over a letter asking for a meeting with President Nixon. The five-page letter was written on American Airlines stationery and requested a meeting with the president to talk about Elvis obtaining the credentials of a federal agent in the war on drugs.

Secret Service agents alerted Egil (Bud) Krogh, Nixon’s then-deputy assistant for domestic affairs, who was able to talk to the right people to get a meeting with the President. The time was set for 12:30 and at 11:45 Elvis was at the White House northwest gate. Krogh met Elvis and his two bodyguards, Sonny West and Jerry Schilling, and escorted them to the Oval Office reception area.