The following is from the Executive Director of the National Archives Foundation. In this time of civil unrest, calling for social justice and an end to racism, we can all learn from and be inspired by Civil Rights activist Representative John Lewis.
Dear National Archives Foundation Friends and Family,
There’s an important story being written in our country today. The National Archives Foundation cannot ignore the social unrest across the nation, and we’ve chosen to take a break from our regularly scheduled Archives at Home newsletter series. This week, we are taking time to watch, listen and learn as history unfolds before us. Below, we have provided a few resources as you reflect on current events and the past.
The Foundation’s job is to support an institution whose responsibility is to serve as our country’s memory by preserving the records that tell our collective story. The Foundation helps audiences look at our modern world through the lens of what has come before.
Facing social justice issues is not a new conversation for the United States nor the National Archives. Examining the heavy history of yesterday provides us with the context, nuance and complexity of the moment and serves as a launch point for meaningful, honest conversations.
A few years ago, we hosted a series of programs called the “National Conversations on Rights and Justice.” At each event, we opened the program with an important video featuring U.S. Representative John Lewis and narrated by Cokie Roberts. I invite you to watch and reflect on the power of our past as we grapple with our days ahead. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-jC_B7w6oks&feature=youtu.be&goal=0_267af3e1d5-985fbd2608-54226782&mc_cid=985fbd2608&mc_eid=65485466b8
National Archives Foundation
- Visit the DocsTeach website. “Rights in America” includes lesson plans, Archives records and student activity discussions about race in America.
- Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture has created a portal of resources to help people explore race, racism and racial identity.
- In 2015, the National Archives Foundation honored Pulitzer Prize winner Taylor Branch with its Records of Achievement Award, in recognition of Branch’s lifelong work to chronicle the life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and the Civil Rights Movement. Learn about Branch’s work in our tribute film from that evening.