The National Archives Presents Noontime Programs in May
Press Release · Friday, May 3, 2013

Washington, DC…The National Archives presents a series of noontime programs in May on topics ranging from the Civil War to the 1970s iconic TV series Good Times and the Mary Tyler Moore Show! These events are free and open to the public.

All May noontime programs will be held in the William G. McGowan Theater of the National Archives Building in Washington, DC, and all will be webcast live on the National Archives UStream channel []. Attendees should use the Special Events entrance on Constitution Avenue at 7th Street, NW. Metro accessible on the Yellow and Green lines, Archives/Navy Memorial/Penn Quarter station.

BOOK TALK:  Knights of the Golden Circle: Secret Empire, Southern Secession, Civil War
Wednesday, May 1
The Knights of the Golden Circle was a secret Southern society that sought to establish a slave-holding empire in Mexico, the Caribbean, and Central America and was involved in the secessionist movement. Author David C. Keehn provides the first comprehensive analysis of the society and how they carried out clandestine actions to support the southern cause. Even with the war all but lost, various Knights supported one of its members, John Wilkes Booth, in his plot to assassinate President Lincoln. A book signing will follow the program.

BOOK TALK:  DY-NO-MITE! Good Times, Bad Times, Our Times—A Memoir
Friday, May 3
Jimmie Walker got his start performing comedy in small clubs, and ultimately became a 1970s icon playing J.J. Evans on Good Times. Walker was the first successful young black sitcom star, and his catchphrase—“Dyn-o-mite!”—remains an indicator of the era. In Dynomite!, Walker talks candidly about his rise and the tensions on the set of Good Times that contradict the show’s image of a close-knit blue-collar family. A book signing will follow the program.

BOOK TALK:  Strange Rebels: 1979 and the Birth of the 21st Century
Friday, May 10
Few moments in history have seen as many seismic transformations as 1979. That year marked the emergence of revolutionary Islam as a political force, the beginning of market revolutions that would radically alter the international economy, and the first stirrings of the resistance movements that led to the collapse of the Soviet Union. Author Christian Caryl shows how the world we live in today began to take shape in this pivotal year. A book signing will follow the program.

BOOK TALK:  Sick from Freedom: African-American Illness and Suffering during the Civil War and Reconstruction
Friday, May 17
Freedmen who fled from slavery during and after the Civil War did not expect that their flight toward freedom would lead to sickness, disease, and death. As Jim Downs reveals in Sick from Freedom, the war produced the largest biological crisis of the 19th century. A book signing will follow the program.

BOOK TALK:  Mary and Lou and Rhoda and Ted
Monday, May 20
Jennifer Armstrong tells the story of the making of a classic and groundbreaking TV show. As the first situation comedy to employ numerous women as writers and producers, The Mary Tyler Moore Show became a guiding light for women in the 1970s and helped increase involvement, responsibility, and visibility of women in future television programs. A book signing will follow the program.

GAME SHOW:  The Return of Archives Jeopardy!
Tuesday, May 21
Archivist of the United States David S. Ferriero hosts another edition of Archives Jeopardy! Audience members will be selected to test their historical knowledge and win prizes.

BOOK TALK:  The Guns at Last Light: The War in Western Europe, 1944–1945
Wednesday, May 22
The Guns at Last Light, the conclusion to Rick Atkinson’s Liberation Trilogy about the battle for Western Europe during World War II, describes the final campaign of the European war, from D-day to Germany’s surrender. A book signing will follow the program.

About Searching for the Seventies

Four of the May noontime programs celebrate the photographic exhibition, “Searching for the Seventies: The DOCUMERICA Photography Project.” Located in the Lawrence F. O’Brien Gallery of the National Archives Building in Washington, DC, this exhibit is free and open to the public, and runs through September 8, 2013.

Bad fashion, odd fads, and disco dance music sum up the 1970s for many Americans. But the1970s were much more than leisure suits, streaking, and disco. During the seventies, profound changes took root in American politics, society, environment, and economy.

“Searching for the Seventies” takes a new look at the 1970s using remarkable color photographs taken for the Federal photography project called DOCUMERICA (1971-1977). Created by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), DOCUMERICA was born out of the decade’s environmental awakening, producing striking photographs of many of that era’s environmental problems and achievements, but also captured the era’s trends, fashions, and cultural shifts.

The National Archives is fully accessible, and Assisted Listening Devices are available in the McGowan Theater upon request. To request a sign language interpreter for a public program, please send an email to or call 202-357-5000 at least two weeks prior to the event. To verify dates and times of the programs, call 202-357-5000 or view the Calendar of Events online. To contact the National Archives, call 1-866-272-6272 or 1-86-NARA-NARA (TDD 301-837-0482).

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

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