Learn about the History of the Peace Corps September 25
Press Release · Monday, September 16, 2019

Washington, DC

On Wednesday, September 25, at 7 pm, the National Archives will present a screening and discussion of the new documentary A Towering Task: The Story of the Peace Corps. Following the screening, Alana DeJoseph, the film’s producer/director, and Shana Kelly, producer/screenwriter, will take  audience questions.  

A Towering Task: The Story of the Peace Corps is a feature documentary covering the almost 60-year history of the agency. From the Peace Corps' founding under John F. Kennedy, through tough times during the Vietnam War and a surprising revival during the Reagan administration, to today's Peace Corps volunteers serving at the forefront of some of the most pressing themes facing the global community, A Towering Task takes viewers on a journey of what it means to be a global citizen. Historians, journalists, former staff and volunteers, and host country nationals come together to tell a story of many voices, a story about the enormous challenge of building peace. Narrated by Annette Bening.

The program is free and open to the public and will be held in the William G. McGowan Theater of the National Archives Museum in Washington, DC. 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. Reservations are recommended and can be made online. For those without reservations, seating is on a first-come, first-served basis. The theater doors will open 45 minutes prior to the start of the program. Late seating will not be permitted 20 minutes after the program begins.

Related National Archives’ online resources:

Record Group 490, records of the Peace Corps

Founding Documents of the Peace Corps, Teaching with Documents lesson plan

Creation of the Peace Corps in 1961, Center for Legislative Archives

John F. Kennedy and the Peace Corps, Kennedy Library


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For media inquiries, please contact: National Archives Public and Media Communications at (202) 357-5300 or via email at

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This page was last reviewed on September 17, 2019.
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