Red Tape Paperweight
- National Archives Store Exclusive
- 4 1/4 X 3 1/4 inches
- This item is currently sold out but we are accepting orders. We expect to have more available in January.
Rise above the bureaucracy and put your desk in order with this stunning red tape paperweight. Made from shatterproof acrylic, it is crystal clear and houses a piece of authentic United States government red tape like that once used to bind official documents.
The red tape preserved in this paperweight comes from records held in the National Archives. As the Archives works to protect and preserve our nation's records, improvements to storage methods mean that documents are no longer tri-folded and tied together with red tape. Archivists are "cutting the red tape" and protecting our precious artifacts using the newest approved methods of preservation.
By the end of the American Civil War, the practice of binding important documents with red ribbon was common throughout the western world. Civil War veterans' records were bound in red ribbon, and the difficulty in obtaining those records to file pension claims led to the modern American use of the term "red tape."