National Archives Hosts Press Preview of "Big!" Exhibit March 11th
Media Alert · Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Washington, DC

WHAT:  A special press “sneak preview” to launch the National Archives major exhibition “BIG! Celebrating the 75th Anniversary of the National Archives,” featuring big records, big events, and big ideas. At a time when many people struggle to see documents and images on smaller and smaller screens, “BIG!” presents the nation’s original record in its full-scale glory. From the 13-foot scroll of the Articles of Confederation (the first constitution of the United States) to the size 22 sneaker of basketball legend Shaquille O’Neal, the items in the exhibition are pieces of the American story—writ large.

The exhibition opens to the public on Friday, March 13, in the Lawrence F. O’Brien Gallery of the National Archives Building in Washington, DC.


  • Acting Archivist of the United States Adrienne Thomas
  • Curator of BIG!” exhibit Stacey Bredhoff
  • Paleontologist Paul E. Olsen who discovered the dinosaur track which is on display in the exhibit

WHERE:  National Archives Building, Lawrence F. O’Brien Gallery, Washington, DC
Media should use the Special Events entrance located at Constitution Avenue and 7th Street, NW.

WHENWednesday, March 11, 2009
Breakfast: 8:30 a.m.
Program: 9 a.m.

The exhibition will be on display through January 3, 2010, and is free and open to the public. The National Archives is located on the National Mall on Constitution Avenue at 9th Street, NW. Spring/Summer hours, beginning March 15, are 10 a.m. – 7 p.m., daily. Admission is free.

Please Note: No Artificial Light May Be Used in the Exhibition.

Background on Paleontologist Paul E. Olsen: In 1968, dinosaur tracks were found in an abandoned quarry in Roseland, New Jersey.  Two teenage boys jumped on their bikes and went to investigate.  Working on their own, they uncovered thousands of fossilized dinosaur tracks.  The boys launched a campaign to preserve the site as an educational park, and sent a cast of one of the dinosaur tracks to then-President Richard Nixon.

One of those boys, Paul E. Olsen, is today one of the nation's foremost paleontologists and a professor at Columbia University.  He will be joining us to speak about his BIG! discovery and how it changed his life.

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



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