National Archives Celebrates 40th Anniversary of The National Endowment for the Humanities
Press Release · Thursday, April 6, 2006

Washington, DC…The National Archives celebrates the 40th Anniversary of the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) with a special series of free public programs April 18-22, 2006. The series themed "American Life and the Humanities" will kick off on Tuesday, April 18, with a panel discussion moderated by Archivist of the United States Allen Weinstein featuring NEH Chairman Bruce Cole and former Chairmen Joseph Duffey and William Ferris. It also features a four-night documentary series, in which filmmakers and historians will offer a retrospective on four classic PBS series which had underwriting support from NEH.

The NEH is an independent grant-making agency of the United States government dedicated to supporting research, education, preservation, and public programs in the humanities. Among a host of accomplishments, it has introduced millions of Americans to award-winning documentaries that enrich our nation's cultural and civic life. The National Endowment for the Humanities, the Center for the National Archives Experience, and the Charles Guggenheim Center for the Documentary Film at the National Archives celebrate NEH's 40th anniversary with programming that features a selection of these prominent documentary films and the artists who created them.

All of these programs will take place in the William G. McGowan Theater of the National Archives Building in Washington, DC, located on the National Mall at Constitution Ave. and 7th Street, NW Admission is on a first-come, first-served basis; the theater doors will open 30 minutes before the start of each program. The National Archives is fully accessible. If you need to request an accommodation (e.g., sign language interpreter) for a public program please e-mail or call 202.357.5000 at least two weeks prior to the event to ensure proper arrangements are secured.

American Life and the Humanities
Tuesday, April 18, at 7 p.m.

The National Endowment for the Humanities and the Center for the National Archives Experience present a panel discussion on "American Life and the Humanities." Panelists will include NEH Chairman Bruce Cole and former Chairmen Joseph Duffey and William Ferris. Archivist of the United States Allen Weinstein will moderate the program and Q & A session with the audience.

The Civil War: The Universe of Battle, 1863
Wednesday, April 19, at 7 p.m.

The Civil War remains the highest rated and most celebrated documentary in public television's history. Emmy® Award-winning filmmaker Ken Burns will introduce Episode 5 of this landmark film, which focuses on the events surrounding the Battle of Gettysburg. He will be joined for a post-screening discussion by Civil War and Abraham Lincoln scholar Harold Holzer.

Broadway: The American Musical
Thursday, April 20, at 7 p.m.

The six-part documentary series Broadway: The American Musical chronicles the Broadway musical throughout the 20th century and explores the evolution of this uniquely American art form. Series producer, writer, and director Michael Kantor will introduce Episode 4, Oh What a Beautiful Mornin', which describes how the partnership of Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II changed the face of Broadway forever. He will be joined in a post-screening discussion by Laurence Maslon, who authored the companion book to the series.

Ike, Part One: Soldier
Friday, April 21, at 7 p.m.

Dwight D. Eisenhower Eisenhower was both a war hero and a President. The documentary Ike, from the PBS series The American Experience, explores both facets of his complex and fascinating life. Part One: Soldier looks at Eisenhower's military career. Executive producer Austin Hoyt will be joined by Eisenhower scholar Duan Van Ee to screen and discuss the film.

The Fight
Saturday, April 22, at 7 p.m.

The June 22, 1938, rematch between African American heavyweight Joe Louis and his German opponent Max Schmeling was was much more than a boxing match. As the 2004 documentary The Fight reveals, it was a historic event freighted with symbolic significance, both a harbinger of the civil rights movement and a prelude to World War II. Writer/director Barak Goodman and author/consulting producer David Margolick (Beyond Glory: Max Schmeling vs. Joe Louis and a World on the Brink) will participate in a post-screening discussion of Goodman's film.


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