May 25, 2001
Press Contact: Craig D'Ooge, Library of Congress (202)
Public Contact: Veterans History Project (888) 371-5848
Ellen McCulloch-Lovell Appointed to Head Veterans History Project
Ellen McCulloch-Lovell has been appointed director of the Veterans'
History Project, a project of the American
Folklife Center in the Library of Congress to collect and
preserve oral histories and documentary materials from veterans
of World War I, World War II, and the Korean, Vietnam and Persian
As Memorial Day approaches, the Veterans History Project is inviting
all the major veterans service organizations and major history
associations to be official partners.
Members of Congress will receive an information package this week,
with suggestions of ways they can help promote the project during
The Veterans History Project was created by Congress late last
year in legislation sponsored by Senators Max Cleland and Chuck
Hagel and Representatives Ron Kind and Amo Houghton. The legislation
passed unanimously, and was signed into law by President Clinton
on October 27, 2000 (P.L.
The project will receive video and audio-taped and written accounts,
as well as letters, diaries and photographs from war veterans
and those who served in support of them. This will become the
first national collection of these materials.
Ms. McCulloch-Lovell comes to the Library's American Folklife
Center with 30 years experience creating cultural and historical
programs in the public sector and has served as senior staff in
the U.S. Senate. Most recently, she was director of the White
House Millennium Council, which ran a number of national programs
and partnerships to commemorate the millennium. She also led "Save
America's Treasures," a national preservation initiative
that was supported by Congress and attracted millions of dollars
in private contributions for hundreds of sites and artifacts,
such as the Star-Spangled Banner, the Thomas Edison National Historic
Site, the cliff dwellings of Mesa Verde, and the USS Missouri.
She was executive director of the President's Committee on the
Arts and the Humanities where she published a number of policy
studies, including Creative America, the 1997 report to President
Clinton on ways to strengthen cultural life in America. From 1983
to 1994 she served as Chief of Staff to Senator Patrick Leahy
Ms. McCulloch-Lovell came to Washington from Vermont in 1983,
where she had directed the Vermont Council on the Arts, the state
arts agency. There she was responsible for its annual appropriations,
private fund raising, information services and grant-making, including
grants to community arts councils, individual artists and artist
residencies in schools.
Lovell said "I am eager to lead the Veterans History Project
because I find it so compelling. With 1,500 veterans dying every
day, their stories die with them. We need to capture these memories
so that future generations may learn from those whoserved."
The Library of Congress announced the project on Veterans Day,
2000. A web site was created to introduce the project, give potential
partners and volunteers guidelines, and tell individuals how they
can participate at www.loc.gov/vets/.
Representatives from the major veterans organizations, military
history offices, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, the
Office of the Secretary of Defense and the Oral History Association
were briefed and consulted in late January, 2001.
The American Folklife Center was created by Congress in 1976
and placed at the Library of Congress to "preserve and present
American Folklife" through programs of research, documentation,
archival presentation, reference service, live performance, exhibition,
public programs, and training. The Center includes the Archive
of Folk Culture, which was established in 1928, and is now one
of the largest collections of ethnographic material from the United
States and around the world.
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