February 22, 2007 Veterans History Project Celebrates Women's History Month with Film Series on Women at War

Press Contact: Tom Wiener (202) 707-0977; Jeffrey Lofton (202) 707-6432
Public Contact: Veterans History Project (202) 707-4916

Women are among the millions of Americans who have served their country in wartime. Their contributions will be celebrated during Women’s History Month with a film series titled “Women at War,” sponsored by the Library of Congress Veterans History Project within the American Folklife Center.

All films will be shown at 7 p.m. on Fridays throughout the month of March in the Mary Pickford Theater, located on the third floor of the Library’s James Madison Building, 101 Independence Ave. S.E., Washington, D.C. All shows are free and open to the public, but seating is limited and reservations are suggested [www.loc.gov/pickford, (202) 707-5677].

The series, programmed by Christel Schmidt of the Library’s Motion Picture, Broadcasting and Recorded Sound Division in cooperation with Tom Wiener of the Veterans History Project, depicts the experiences of women who served the nation during the major wars of the 20th century. The series offers feature films, shorts and television episodes that dramatize the events of World Wars I and II, and the Korean, Vietnam and Persian Gulf wars.

Established by Congress in 2000, the Veterans History Project in the Library’s American Folklife Center is documenting and preserving first-hand accounts of the nation’s veterans and their families. To date, the project has amassed more than 45,000 individual submissions. Of these, approximately 3,000 are women’s stories. For information on how to participate in this effort, visit the project’s Web site at www.loc.gov/vets.


March 2: “Mad Parade” (1931)
Evelyn Brent heads the all-female cast in this feature film about women canteen workers toiling in a chateau near the frontlines in France during World War I. Also showing this evening is “100% American,” a short silent film starring Mary Pickford in a story promoting the sale of war bonds.

March 9: “Ladies Courageous” (1944)
This World War II drama stars Loretta Young as a pilot in charge of the Women’s Auxiliary Flying Service. Also showing this evening is “Women in Defense” (1942), a short film scripted by First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt and narrated by Katharine Hepburn.

March 16: “Flight Nurse” (1953)
The Korean War is dramatized in this film starring Joan Leslie as a nurse torn between two GIs. An episode titled “Inga” from the popular TV series “M*A*S*H” completes the evening. It centers on the arrival of an assertive woman doctor played by Mariette Hartley.

March 23: An episode from the acclaimed TV series “China Beach,” starring Dana Delaney and Marg Helgenberger, anchors this program devoted to the Vietnam War. Also showing this evening is a report titled “Woman Doctor in Vietnam,” which aired in 1966 on the CBS news program “The 20th Century.” It profiles American physician Pat Smith, who ran a hospital for Montagnards near Kontum.

March 30: The series concludes with “Courage Under Fire” (1996), a feature film starring Meg Ryan as a Persian Gulf War helicopter pilot whose death in a skirmish in a remote area of the desert comes under investigation by an officer played by Denzel Washington. He soon finds out that no two stories about the late servicewoman match. Matt Damon and Lou Diamond Phillips co-star.


PR 07-032
ISSN 0731-3527