The American Archive of Public Broadcasting is a project to preserve for posterity the most significant public television and radio programs of the past 60 years. The American people have made a huge investment in public radio and television over many decades, calculated at more than $10 billion. The goal of the American Archive is to ensure that this rich source for American political, social, and cultural history and creativity will be saved and made available once again to future generations.
In August 2013, the Library of Congress and WGBH received a grant from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting to engage in the first phase of a long-term project to preserve public media. During this first phase, the Library and WGBH oversaw the digitization of approximately 40,000 hours of programs selected by more than 100 public broadcasting stations throughout the nation. Dating from the 1950s to the 21st century and emanating from all regions of the nation, these programs are now available to scholars, researchers, educators, students, and the general public at the Library’s audiovisual research centers and at WGBH. In the future, the American Archive plans to expand by targeting important collections of materials from stations and archives that were not included in the initial phase.
The AAPB PBPF will play an important role in the ongoing American Archive mission by providing preservation plans and resources for public media organizations.