Public Radio as a Tool for Cultural Engagement in New York in the 60s and early 70s: Digitizing the Broadcasts of WRVR-FM Public Radio

Material Description


The Riverside Church in the City of New York (TRC), Library of Congress (LOC), and WGBH Educational Foundation (WGBH) will digitize 3502 ¼-inch open-reel recordings from WRVR-FM’s 1961-1971 broadcasts for addition, with metadata, to the American Archive of Public Broadcasting (AAPB). The nominated collection reflects WRVR’s culturally significant non-commercial programming, including interviews, speeches, and musical interpretations on matters like civil rights, war, and fine arts, from laypersons to famed scholars, including Martin Luther King, Jr., Malcolm X, and Pete Seeger. The project will preserve recordings outside their current time-sensitive medium, making 4060 hours of audio available. It will enhance study in many disciplines, including theology/religion, political science, and communications, especially related to American Christianity, homiletics, progressive responses to the Civil Rights movement, contemporary issues of race and sexuality, cultural impact of the 1960s, and public radio as a tool for cultural engagement and social media precursor.


Digitizing Hidden Collections

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The Riverside Church in the City of New York


Ms. Ricki Moskowitz
The Riverside Church in the City of New York

Ms. Rachel Curtis

Collaborating Institution(s)

the Library of Congress, and the WGBH Educational Foundation


  • 4060 Audio Recordings