Our Collection

At the Institute’s core is the Gilder Lehrman Collection, one of the great archives in American history. More than 70,000 items cover five hundred years of American history, from Columbus’s 1493 letter describing the New World to soldiers’ letters from World War II and Vietnam. Explore primary sources, visit exhibitions in person or online, or bring your class on a field trip.

Freedom Riders

Welcome to the online exhibition of Freedom Riders created by the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History in partnership with PBS’s flagship history series, American Experience. It was created as a companion to the American Experience documentary “Freedom Riders.”