This year marks the 20th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States. As the nation’s record keeper, the National Archives holds many documents and photographs related to the events of September 11.
9/11 Commission Records
The National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States, known as the 9/11 Commission, was an independent, bipartisan commission created by Congress. The Commission’s mandate was to provide a “full and complete accounting” of the attacks of September 11, 2001 and to provide recommendations as to how to prevent such attacks in the future. When the 9/11 Commission closed on August 21, 2004, it transferred legal custody of its records to the National Archives. The Commission encouraged the release of its records to the fullest extent possible in January 2009. A large percentage of the Commission’s records are national security classified files. The National Archives maintains a list of documents released since the records were opened in 2009.
9/11 Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Records
Following the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) (Record Group 237) compiled records from its staff and aviation facilities to support internal and external investigations of the events. The records consist of 126 cubic feet of textual, audio, and electronic files relating to the actual terrorist attacks, the FAA’s involvement in the monitoring of United Airlines Flights 175 and 93 and American Airlines Flights 11 and 77, and the Federal Government’s subsequent actions in the aftermath of the attacks.
Learn more about the 9/11 Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Records at the National Archives and view the Finding Aid.
View the processed FAA records in the National Archives Catalog.
9/11 Photograph Collection
In the days following the September 11 terrorist attacks, White House photographers took over 50,000 photographs capturing the horror and heroism, the courage and compassion surrounding the attacks.
View the collection of 9/11 photographs from the George W. Bush Presidential Library, and a selection of photographs in the National Archives Catalog.
9/11 Fireman’s Son Sees Dad on National Archives Instagram
On the 18th anniversary of the 9/11 tragedy, the National Archives shared a Catalog image from President George W. Bush’s visit to Ground Zero on September 14, 2001.
The son of a 9/11 fireman saw the photo on the National Archives Instagram account and asked: “Hello, I just came across this picture that you posted and the firefighter in the middle is my dad. Is there any way you can send me the original photo?” Learn more about this remarkable story and connection on National Archives News.