First Episode Of 'All Things Considered' Is Headed To Library Of Congress : The Two-Way The NPR program's inaugural 1971 broadcast has been added to the National Recording Registry, alongside other "aural treasures" like Judy Garland's "Over the Rainbow." Take a listen to the first show!

First Episode Of 'All Things Considered' Is Headed To Library Of Congress

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Now let's consider something else here. Or maybe let's consider a few more things. Or actually, how about all the things? - which is what NPR's afternoon news show has tried to do for more than four and a half decades.


ROBERT CONLEY, BYLINE: From National Public Radio in Washington, I'm Robert Conley with All Things Considered.



That's how the first broadcast of All Things Considered started on May 3, 1971. We're hearing it now because that broadcast is one of 25 recordings being added to the National Recording Registry at the Library of Congress.

STEVE LEGGETT: The selection was meant to kind of highlight the diversity of America's recorded sound heritage.

GREENE: Steve Leggett helps run that registry, which has been preserving audio since 2002.

MARTIN: There's a lot of music in the registry - all kinds, from a Radiohead rock song to old field recordings of folk and traditional music. There are famous speeches, even a comedy album by George Carlin.

LEGGETT: We have made a big push the last few years to improve the preservation of radio programs. And All Things Considered and NPR has just had such a seminal importance, you know, in American culture, in politics and just keeping people informed the last 40 years plus.

GREENE: When All Things Considered launched in 1971, the news of the day was a massive Vietnam War protest in Washington, D.C. And host Robert Conley told listeners they would hear the news covered differently.


CONLEY: Rather than pulling in reports from all over town, we thought we might try to take you to the event to get the feel, the texture, the sort of day it's been.

JEFF KAMEN, BYLINE: And here come the police.


KAMEN: One demonstrator knocked down by a motor scooter policeman.

Sergeant, excuse me. Jeff Kamen, National Public Radio - is that a technique, where the men actually try to drive their bikes into the demonstrators?

UNIDENTIFIED POLICE SERGEANT: No, it's no technique. We're trying to go down the road, and the people get in front. What are you going to do? You don't stop on a dime.

GREENE: Taking you to the scene. That first broadcast was heard on about 90 public radio stations. Other topics considered that day include an interview with a former nurse who had become a drug addict, a reading of World War I poems...

MARTIN: And a barber in Ames, Iowa, who shaved women's legs - 75 cents for the first leg, a quarter for the other. Those stories and more will be preserved at the Library of Congress's National Recording Registry.


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