American Archive of Public Broadcasting Features Film & Media Archive’s “Great Depression Interviews”

Washington University Libraries’ Film & Media Archive has contributed the digitized series The Great Depression Interviews to the American Archive of Public Broadcasting (AAPB). The series is now featured on the AAPB website.

Led by the Library of Congress and the WGBH Educational Foundation, the AAPB is an organization that seeks to become a focal point for the discoverability of historical public media content and to coordinate a national effort to preserve significant public broadcasting materials.

The collaboration with AAPB has expanded the Film & Media Archive’s audience and made more accessible an important archival collection.

About The Great Depression Interviews

From the stock market crash of 1929 to the beginnings of World War II, The Great Depression Interviews shares unforgettable stories of struggle and survival during the worst economic crisis in American history. It features more than 100 hours of digitized conversation about the Great Depression.

The interviews were conducted by Henry Hampton’s production company, Blackside, Inc., from 1991-1992. They aired as a seven-part series, debuting on PBS stations in 1993 and receiving critical acclaim. The series won an Emmy Award and a duPont-Columbia Award.

The interviews spotlight a wide range of writers, activists, and historians, including Maya Angelou, actor and director Ossie Davis, poet Miller Williams, and child-welfare activist Trude Lash. The participants reflect on topics such as the U.S. economy, racism, poverty, immigration, and Presidents Herbert Hoover and Franklin Delano Roosevelt.

The series is part of the Henry Hampton Collection, which is housed at the Film & Media Archive. Each video and transcript represents the entire interview conducted by Blackside, Inc., including portions that did not appear in the final program. For more information, contact the Film & Media Archive.

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