National Archives

National Archives

National Archives, keeper of our country’s records for almost 100 years, wanted to take a key story of the Civil War, the voyage of the CSS Alabama, and make it appeal to tweens.

Timbuktoons was contacted to develop comic book styled illustrations for an interactive exhibit along with an exhibit teaser video.

We produced illustrations for an interactive display, a comic book and motion comic for the Discovering the Civil War exhibit.

The illustrations all correlated to specific archived documents chronicling the journey of the confederate “pirate” ship from construction to its final battle.

The illustrations were so well received that Archives commissioned two follow-up projects to be produced and sold along with their traveling exhibit: a 16-page comic book and accompanying motion graphic novel on DVD.


  • Use relevant style and media formats to connect history to a middle-school target age
  • Write in script form the story of a key Civil War battle from numerous historical documents
  • Balancing historical accuracy with creative storytelling



  • 15 action comic styled panels for an interactive display
  • animated teaser for the CSS Alabama exhibit featured on the Washington Post website
  • a 16-page comic book with accompanying motion comic on DVD




Awards: Gold Addys: Voyage of the Alabama Trailer (Ads for the Arts & Sciences, video); Voyage of the Alabama Illustrations (Ads for the Arts & Sciences, interactive)
Special Judges Award: Voyage of the Alabama Illustrations

Services: Visual development, asset creation, illustrations, animatics, 2D animation production, compositing and effects.
Software: Adobe Illustrator, Flash, Toonboom Storyboard Pro, After Effects