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The Great Speckled Bird: Great Speckled Bird 50th Anniversary Events

Great Speckled Bird 50th Anniversary

The first issue of the Great Speckled Bird was published on March 15, 1968. Atlanta's only underground paper marked its 50th anniversary with events planned throughout 2018. See below for more information on the events. 



A Great Speckled Bird 50th Anniversary Playlist is available on YouTube.


Monday, April 16 | Labor Forum, WRFG 89.3FM, 4:00pm. Andrew Reisinger and Traci Drummond, who are working on the Great Speckled Bird Oral History Project (part of Georgia State University Library's Special Collections and Archives) will be on air to talk about the history of the Bird, the importance of keeping and telling history, and understanding Atlanta's activist past. Labor Forum airs every Monday at 4:00PM.

Thursday, April 19 | Hidden Midtown: Radical Roots, 6:30pm.  Join us at Atlanta History Center Midtown to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the founding of one of the most influential independent newspapers in the country. Meet the original journalists, view a pop-up exhibit documenting the paper's history, and go on a scavenger hunt to Midtown sites associated with the paper and its most captivating stories. Visit the Atlanta History Center website for more information and to purchase a ticket.  

Friday, April 20 | Atlanta Studies Symposium. The sixth annual Atlanta Studies Symposium will be held at the Robert W. Woodruff Library at Emory University. This year's theme is "Atlanta: City + Region." Former Bird staffers Stephanie Coffin, Nan Orrock, and Steve Wise will be presenting on "The Great Speckled Bird Newspaper: Reflections on its Impact in Atlanta." The Atlanta Studies Symposium is free and open to the public. Click here for more information about registration and to see the full program.   


Saturday, June 2 | Great Speckled Bird Anniversary Celebration. 4:00-9:00pm. Join former Bird staffers for an evening of celebration! The meeting will open with music from Sing Out Defiance, followed by a conference, "Media Now & Then," with the following lineup:

  • Speaker Hamilton Nolan, senior writer for Splinter News and recipient of the Richard B. Jablow award from from the 70th Annual Writers Guild in New York
  • Keynote Speaker Amy Goodman of Democracy Now
  • Panel of Great Speckled Bird veterans speaking on "Media Then"

Tickets can be purchased in advance for $10 or at the door for $12. The event is open to the public and will be held at Chosewood Hall, 420 McDonough Boulevard SE, Atlanta, GA 30315.

Friday, June 29 | Lost in the Stacks, noon-1:00pm. Andrew Reisinger and Traci Drummond, of Georgia State University, will be on Georgia Tech's "original research-library rock'n'roll radio show!" to discuss the Great Speckled Bird Oral History Project. Lost in the Stacks airs Fridays at noon on WREK 91.1. 


Tuesday, August 7 | Atlanta Studies Summer 2018 Meetup, Manuel's Tavern, 7-9PM. Traci Drummond and Andy Reisinger will discuss the history of The Bird, the origins and evolution of Georgia State’s digitization and oral history projects to preserve and document the history of the Bird, the community-based collaboration of these projects, and things they’ve learned about the paper, the people involved in producing the paper, and the history of Atlanta during the 1960s and 1970s through these projects. Click to see the Facebook invite.