September 30, 2015 Library of Congress Presents Talks, Film and Tours Focusing on Civil Rights Movement

Library’s Exhibition “The Civil Rights Act of 1964: A Long Struggle for Freedom” Continues Through Jan. 2, 2016

Press Contact: Donna Urschel (202) 707-1639
Public Contact: Stacie Moats (202) 707-0185

The Library of Congress will present events in October and November that examine the civil rights movement and its impact, including a book talk by author Daniel Geary about the Moynihan Report and its legacy, a gallery talk focused on civil-rights advocate Mary Church Terrell, a documentary film featuring rare Oval Office footage to commemorate the 90th anniversary of the birth of Robert F. Kennedy, and highlights tours of an ongoing exhibition.

The programming complements the Library’s exhibition “The Civil Rights Act of 1964: A Long Struggle for Freedom,” which is free and open to the public Monday through Saturday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. in the Southwest Gallery on the second level of the Thomas Jefferson Building, 10 First St. S.E., Washington, D.C. The exhibition will be open through Jan. 2, 2016.

The exhibition, which displays more than 200 items, highlights the legal and legislative challenges and victories leading to the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, shedding light on the individuals—both prominent leaders and private citizens—who participated in the decades-long campaign for equality. The online exhibition is available here.

The book talk and film presentation will be held in the Mary Pickford Theater on the third floor of the James Madison Building, 101 Independence Ave. S.E., Washington, D.C. The gallery talk and tours will take place in the exhibition gallery in the Thomas Jefferson Building All events are free and open to the public. Tickets are not needed.

Book Talk

On Friday, Oct. 16, at noon, Daniel Geary will discuss and sign his book "Beyond Civil Rights: The Moynihan Report and Its Legacy" (2015). Geary, who is the Mark Pigott Assistant Professor in U.S. History at Trinity College Dublin, also wrote "Radical Ambition: C. Wright Mills, the Left, and American Social Thought." The book talk is hosted by the Library’s Interpretive Programs Office.

Gallery Talk

On Wednesday, Nov. 4, at noon, in the exhibition gallery of “The Civil Rights Act of 1964: A Long Struggle for Freedom” in the Jefferson Building, Angela McMillian of the Library’s Humanities and Social Sciences Division will discuss the life and work of Mary Church Terrell, civil-rights advocate, along with related resources available from

Film Presentation

On Friday, Nov. 20, at noon: Commemorating the 90th anniversary of the birth of Robert F. Kennedy, the Library will present “Kennedy v. Wallace: A Crisis Up Close,” a groundbreaking behind-the-scenes television documentary that reveals Kennedy’s role as Attorney General during a 1963 civil rights crisis. The documentary captures Kennedy strategizing for a showdown with Alabama governor George Wallace–the infamous “Stand in the Schoolhouse Door” attempt by the governor to prevent two African American students, Vivian Malone and James Hood, from enrolling in the University of Alabama–and includes commentary 25 years later from Malone and Kennedy’s Deputy Attorney General Nicholas Katzenbach. Rare Oval Office footage shows Robert Kennedy persuading his brother to make a major televised address to the nation on civil rights, a speech that Martin Luther King Jr. deemed “one of the most eloquent, profound, and unequivocal pleas for justice and freedom of all men ever made by any president.” The film presentation is hosted by the Library’s Interpretive Programs Office and the Motion Picture, Broadcasting, and Recorded Sound Division.

Public Tours

Highlight tours of the exhibition are available to the general public at 1 p.m. on Mondays and Fridays. The tours run approximately 45 minutes. Please meet the docent by the visitor information desk near the entrance to the exhibition located in the Southwest Gallery on the second level of the Thomas Jefferson Building. The tours are free and open to the public, no reservations are necessary. For more information or to schedule reserved tours for groups of 10-20 people, please email

“The Civil Rights Act of 1964: A Long Struggle for Freedom” exhibition is made possible by a generous grant from Newman’s Own Foundation, with additional support from HISTORY for both audio-visual and educational outreach.

The Library of Congress, the nation’s oldest federal cultural institution and the largest library in the world, holds more than 160 million items in various languages, disciplines and formats. The Library serves the U.S. Congress and the nation both on-site in its reading rooms on Capitol Hill and through its award-winning website at


PR 15-178
ISSN 0731-3527