From Amos 'n' Andy to Civil Rights - The Inclusion of Blackness in Commercial Radio Broadcasts

From Amos 'n' Andy to Civil Rights

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  • May 4, 2021
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Researching the history of racial representation in commercial radio is challenging. Records documenting radio history, particularly airchecks (recorded broadcasts), are scattered, incomplete, or entirely lost. Until recently, comprehensive radio historiographies have given little voice to people marginalized or excluded from the industry. The thousands of audio reels preserved in the Library of American Broadcasting collections, however, provide a more complete account of this history, which enables us to explore patterns of biases and inequality, and trace the development of more inclusive practices. Read more about how the inclusion of Blackness slowly evolved in commercial network radio in various guises between the 1930s and 1960s. 

The Broadcast History Legacy of Joseph E. Baudino

The Broadcast History Legacy of Joseph E. Baudino

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  • May 21, 2020
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The Library of American Broadcasting (LAB) contains station publications, broadcasting trade publications, photographs, and audio recordings documenting the KDKA’s history. This is due to the unique relationship the LAB has with KDKA and Westinghouse. Dedicated in 1972 as the Broadcast Pioneers Library, the LAB was founded by the Broadcast Pioneers Educational Fund, a group of veteran broadcasters who had been involved with radio broadcasting from its beginnings. One of the best illustrations of this relationship was the contribution made by Joseph E. Baudino, who served as the BPL’s president from 1972 to 1978. Read more about "The Broadcast History Legacy of Joseph E. Baudino"

A Pivotal Event for Humankind

A Pivotal Event for Humankind: The Apollo 11 Spaceflight

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  • June 13, 2019
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When Apollo 11 landed on the moon on July 20, 1969, the historic moment was witnessed by an estimated 600 million people around the world. Both television and radio networks broadcast live coverage from the launch on July 16 to the return splashdown on July 24, 1969. Read more about the Library of American Broadcasting collections that celebrate this important historic milestone.

Celebrating 25 Years Together

Celebrating 25 Years Together: The LAB Celebrates 25 Years of Partnership with the University of Maryland

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  • March 28, 2019
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We worked together to collect and preserve the history of the radio and television industries, creating a vital and unique archive, being one of the only repositories to document almost a century’s worth of broadcast history in the United States. Together, we're digitally preserving as many of these materials as possible, ensuring that they remain accessible to current and future generations of researchers from all over the world. Read more about the LAB and UMD partnership

An American Presidency in Crisis

An American Presidency in Crisis: Richard Nixon and the Watergate Scandal

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  • June 7, 2018
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In October of 1973, almost a year and a half after the break-in to the DNC offices at the Watergate Building Complex, President Richard Nixon responded to increasing legal scrutiny. Digitized from the Westinghouse Tape Archive, these voice cuts dating from October 22, 1973, sound remarkably similar to statements being made by government officials today regarding the conduct of the current president. Studying historical patterns of political rhetoric can offer insight into the nature of power relations and the effectiveness of resistance. Read more about "An American Presidency in Crisis"

A Tragedy Remembered, Broadcasting Coverage of the Assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

A Tragedy Remembered: Broadcasting Coverage of the Assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

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  • April 1, 2018
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Civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was shot outside a Memphis hotel on April 4, 1968. The clips featured here show how the day’s reports continuously developed with additional details about the circumstances of the assassination. Read "A Tragedy Remembered"

How Must Carry/Retransmission came to be...and more

How Must Carry/Retransmission came to be...and more

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  • September 18, 2017
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October 5, 2017, was the 25th anniversary of a monumental event in the history of broadcasting. By a vote of 74-25, the United States Senate voted to overturn the veto of President George H.W. Bush on S.12, The Cable Act of 1992. Two critical components of that bill, Must Carry and Retransmission Consent, redefined the television and broadcast industries. Read "How Must Carry/Retransmission came to be...and more"

Demonstrations and the media

Demonstrations and the Media

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  • April 5, 2017
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News broadcasters can play a very important role in interpreting the events around them. Curators of our media collections selected material that demonstrates the ways broadcasters reported past demonstrations. Read "Demonstrations and the Media"

Inaugurations from our past

Broadcasting at Presidential Inaugurations

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  • December 19, 2016
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For nearly a century, broadcasters have been instrumental in capturing and reporting on Presidential inaugurations. Explore this history using our collection. Read "Broadcasting at Presidential Inaugurations"

Election Result Coverage Through the Years

Election Results Coverage

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  • September 28, 2016
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Over the years, as technology and the ability of broadcasters to spread news quickly has changed, the ways in which we consume breaking election coverage has also changed. Here are just a few examples of important elections and the methods by which Americans received election results. Read "Election Results Coverage"

Giants of Broadcasting 2016

Giants of Broadcasting 2016

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  • September 1, 2016
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The Giants of Broadcasting & Electronic Arts was created by the Library of American Broadcasting Foundation to identify those professionals who have demonstrated outstanding excellence in four creative disciplines. Read more about this year's nominees and find event information.

This device isn't a spaceship, it's a time machine. It goes backwards, and forwards... it takes us to a place where we ache to go again. It's not called the wheel, it's called the carousel. It let's us travel the way a child travels - around and around, and back home again...

- Don Draper -

Early Women in Broadcasting

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  • June 01, 2015
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Women made significant contributions to the development and expansion of American broadcasting through the mid-20th century. The Library of American Broadcasting preserves the collections of many of these leading ladies. Read more about "Early Women in Broadcasting"

...It is more likely that the initial, direct attack would have come from within. And if it had, we can be sure that one of the enemy's first moves would have been the attempt to seize America's broadcasting facilities.

- "Blueprint for Bundists", WWII Radio -

Make it simple, but significant. -Don Draper

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  • June 01, 2015
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Librarians working with the LAB collection help answer a variety of research questions, often from scholars, historians or students. Sometimes they receive requests to help out with special projects, such as a television show or movie. Read more about this reference request

Girl

WWII Radio

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  • June 01, 2015
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The role of radio in WWII was extensive and varied. It represented freedom won and freedom lost, as well as the inextricable link between war and the marketplace. Read more about "WWII Radio"