Fallen Journalists Memorial Update: Prominent Historians, Scholars and Journalists Support Site for Memorial Near National Mall in Washington

Why does a memorial to fallen journalists and a free press deserve a location near the National Mall in Washington, D.C., and within view of the U.S. Capitol?

As American historian Michael Beschloss wrote, “Throughout our history, brave journalists have been so essential to keeping the flame of American democracy alive that it is astounding to me that, before now, they have never been properly honored by a national memorial.”

Beschloss is one of nine prominent historians, scholars, journalists, and other experts who submitted essays to the National Capital Memorial Advisory Commission (NCMAC), in support of a prominent site for the Fallen Journalists Memorial Foundation.

The Fallen Journalists Memorial Foundation is proud to receive the support of leaders across the country as it works to build the first memorial on public land in Washington celebrating America’s commitment to a free press and commemorating the journalists who have lost their lives in service to that cause.

The essays were submitted as part of the federal government’s site selection process, which will determine where in Washington the Memorial will be located. The essays help to demonstrate why the Memorial is deserving of a position in “Area I,” the area nearest the National Mall. (See Area I outlined in the graphic below).

Foundation President Barbara Cochran said: “We want to thank these individuals for lending their voice and expertise to this effort. We are proud to share their insightful and eloquent essays with our supporters around the country and the world.”

Those contributing essays were:Michael Beschloss, American Historian; Clarence Page, Columnist and Member of the Chicago Tribune Editorial Board; Paul Goldberger, Contributing Editor at Vanity Fair; Leonard Downie Jr., former Executive Editor of the Washington Post and Professor of Journalism, Arizona State University; Earnest L. Perry Jr., Ph.D., Associate Dean, Missouri School of Journalism; Amanda Bennett, Former Director, Voice of America; Rick Hutzell, Former Editor, Capital Gazette; Tom Rosenstiel, Professor of Journalism, University of Maryland; and Carl Bernstein, Journalist and Author.

Below please find Barbara Cochran’s opening statement to NCMAC followed by links to each of the nine essays.

Statement to the National Capital Memorial Advisory Commission
By Barbara Cochran, President, Fallen Journalists Memorial Foundation

Journalists Keep the Flame of Democracy Alive
By Michael Beschloss, Presidential Historian

Even in the Face of Danger, Journalists Keep Watch
By Clarence Page, Columnist and member, Chicago Tribune Editorial Board

Memorial Will Show the Public Why a Free Press Matters to Them
By Paul Goldberger, Contributing Editor at Vanity Fair, architecture critic

Holding Power Accountable Is Key Mission of Free and Fearless Press
By Leonard Downie Jr., Weil Family Professor of Journalism, Walter Cronkite School of Journalism, Arizona State University, Former executive editor, The Washington Post

Does the First Amendment apply to me: Press Freedom in the Long Struggle for Civil Rights
By Earnest L. Perry Jr., Ph.D., Associate Dean for Graduate Studies and Research Missouri School of Journalism

America’s Commitment To A Free Press Is A Beacon To The World
By Amanda Bennett, Former Director, Voice Of America

Fallen Journalists Memorial: Recognizing the vital role local news media plays in American communities
By Rick Hutzell, Former Editor of the Capital Gazette in Annapolis, MD

The Press and the Republic Rise and Fall Together
By Tom Rosenstiel, Eleanor Merrill Visiting Professor on the Future of Journalism at the University of Maryland Philip Merrill College of Journalism

Investigative Reporting’s Critical Role in Our History
By Carl Bernstein, Journalist and Author