Photographer's Note

The Newseum

The Newseum features 14 exhibition galleries exploring news history, electronic news, photojournalism, and how the media covered historical events such as the fall of the Berlin Wall and the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. One of the museum’s 15 theaters is a 4-D experience filmed in 3-D and includes seat movement and other physical special effects. One hundred miles of fiber optic cable links up technologies that include two broadcast studios, a 40-by-22-foot high-definition LED screen, a 90-foot-long video news wall, 48 interactive kiosks where visitors can experience being in roles required to bring the news to the public such as photojournalist, editor, reporter or news anchor.

The largest gallery includes five theaters and is built around the museum’s collection of more than 30,000 historic newspapers tracing more than 500 years of news. Eighty international newspaper front pages on display are enlarged and updated daily. Visitors have electronic access to more than 500 front pages.

The Internet, TV, and Radio Gallery highlights the growth of radio, television and Internet news including an exhibit on newsman Edward R. Murrow, a digital news center that looks at how technology transforms journalism, and an original documentary that looks at the people and events from the “golden age” of television news, 1947-1969. Visitors can watch television news and compare press freedoms in more than 190 countries illustrating the dangers reporters face while reporting the news.

Other interesting exhibits in the museum include the 9/11 Gallery, perhaps the first permanent museum exhibit devoted to the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. It shows how the media in New York, Pennsylvania, at the Pentagon and around the world responded to one of the biggest news stories of the century. The Berlin Wall Gallery contains eight 12 foot high sections of the original Berlin Wall - one of the largest collections outside of Germany. Artifacts including a clay brick with cuneiform writing (1255-1235 B.C.) and a statue of Thoth, the Egyptian god of scribes (750 B.C.), illustrate some of ways news traveled before the invention of the printing press in the 15th century.

Books and documents illustrate the origins of freedom of the press. The oldest of 19 works dates back more than 500 years to a 1475 printing of Thomas Aquinas’ “Summa Theologica,” a work that combined philosophy and theology. Other publications on display include a 1542 printing of the Magna Carta, Thomas Paine’s “Common Sense,” and a 1787 first pamphlet printing of the U.S. Constitution.

The large LED screen seen in the center of the picture can be raised or lowered when events are held in the room. Hanging from the ceiling on the right is a replica of ATS 1, a news satellite which made possible the first live global TV broadcast. The chopper appearing to soar over the atrium is a Bell Jet Ranger news helicopter.

This Week ABC News chief Washington correspondent, George Stephanopoulos, reports live from the Newseum. His studio is located there.

Visitors can easily spend a full day enjoying this interesting place.

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Additional Photos by Betty Jones (BWJ) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 473 W: 0 N: 919] (3094)
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