Press/Journalists

Press Release
January 20, 2011

National Archives Launches New "Inside the Vaults" Video short

Presidential historian Michael Beschloss marks 50th anniversary of Eisenhower’s Farewell Address

Washington, DC…The National Archives marks the 50th anniversary of President Dwight D. Eisenhower’s Farewell Address with the latest “Inside the Vaults” video short [http://tiny.cc/Ike1].

The National Archives' produced 3:17 “The Writing of Eisenhower’s Farewell Address” video short shows the creation of this legendary address, and reveals newly-discovered documents with surprising details into the evolution of the crafting of this famous speech. The video features Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum Director Karl Weissenbach discussing handwritten notes, drafts and President Eisenhower’s “reading copy” of one of the most famous speeches in American history, along with excerpts of President Eisenhower delivering remarks.

Presidential historian Michael Beschloss offers insights on the lasting impact of Eisenhower’s warning of the “military-industrial complex,” and explains how this speech was Eisenhower’s own: “These new papers give us written evidence that this was not just some caprice of Eisenhower’s or something by some speech writer… He wanted to give this speech for a long time, two years” “One test of how well a president speaks is how long the speech lives. Here we are 50 years later, we’re still talking about this speech,” Beschloss – who is also vice president and board member of the Foundation for the National Archives – added.

Background on “Inside the Vaults”

“Inside the Vaults” is part of the ongoing effort by the National Archives to make its collections, stories, and accomplishments more accessible to the public. “Inside the Vaults” gives voice to Archives staff and users, highlights new and exciting finds at the Archives, and reports on complicated and technical subjects in easily understandable presentations. Earlier topics include the conservation of the original Declaration of Independence, the new Grace Tully collection of documents at the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Presidential Library, the transfer to the National Archives of the Nuremberg Laws, the creation of Kennedy’s Inaugural Address, and the launch of a new National Archives user-friendly search engine. The film series is free to view and distribute on our YouTube channel [http://tiny.cc/Vaults].

Created by a former broadcast network news producer, the "Inside the Vaults" video shorts series presents “behind the scenes” exclusives and offer surprising glimpses of the National Archives treasures. These videos are in the public domain and not subject to any copyright restrictions. The National Archives encourages the free distribution of them.

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For Press information, contact the National Archives Public Affairs staff at 202-357-5300.

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