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HIST 7900 Theory and Practice-special collections resources: Special Collections-Brown Media Archives

special collections and related service point resources

About Brown Media

The Walter J. Brown Media Archive & Peabody Awards Collection was started in 1995 and currently preserves over 250,000 titles in film, video, audiotape, transcription disks, and other recording formats dating from the 1920s to the present. Our mission is to preserve, protect, and provide access to the moving image and sound materials that reflect the collective memory of broadcasting and the history of the state of Georgia and its people.

The Peabody Awards Collection contains nearly every entry for the first major broadcast award given in the United States. Entries begin in 1940 for radio and 1948 for television, and we receive at least 1,000 new entries every year --programs by local, national, cable, and international producers. The collection provides a cultural cross-section of television from its infancy to the present day, featuring news, documentary, entertainment, educational, and children's programming. Georgia history is highlighted in three newsfilm collections. The WSB Newsfilm Collection focuses on Atlanta but covers the entire Southeast; the WALB Newsfilm Collection contains raw news footage from Albany and surrounding areas from 1961 to 1978; and the WRDW Newsfilm Collection features footage of the Augusta area from 1961-1976.

Our non-broadcast collection of amateur film, video, and audiotape highlighting Georgia people, places, and musicians includes the Andrew Avery Home Movie Collection; the Kaliska-Greenblatt Home Movie Collection; the Georgia Folklore Collection of field recordings of Georgia folk musicians made by  the Georgia Folklore Society; and the Foxfire Collection, among others.


The Peabody Awards Collection

The Peabody Awards Collection includes outstanding radio and television programs in all genres: children's programs, documentaries, news, educational programs, entertainment, and public service. There are over 60,000 programs described in the Peabody database. Over 3,000 programs are digitized and can be viewed streaming on the UGA campus. Older programs have analog user copies available in the UGA Libraries Media Department, located in the basement of the Main Library. Please note that Media Archives does not have copyright in these materials. These materials may be viewed but may not be duplicated or reused.

The WSB, WALB, WTOC and WRDW Newsfilm Collections

Newsfilm and News Video collections contain raw news footage as shot in the field as well as complete, ready-for-broadcast packages, often together on the same reel or tape.  Raw news footage may be color or black and white; sound or silent; edited or entirely raw. UGA holds the collections of WSB (Atlanta), WALB (Albany), WTOC (Savannah), and WRDW (Augusta), covering the state of Georgia and the Southeast from 1949-1981. Media Archives has licensing rights to these collections and is able to provide clips for use in student projects.

Newsfilm was used in broadcast for television newscasts from 1948 until the 1970s. Local stations relied heavily on their cameramen to capture local news stories - there were no feeds between stations because the technology to do so was not yet in place. Cameramen would go out and capture the stories on 100-foot reels, return to the studio and process this reversal film stock (film stock that passed through the camera and was broadcast ready after a one-step development process). The film would then be viewed and edited, and put on a film chain (device that included one or more film projectors aligned to TV pick-up camera ) ready for the news broadcast. Search for newsfilm using our Newsfilm Database linked above.

News Videotape: Stations began to switch from film to video in the late 1970's. UGA has WSB's News Video collection dating from 1977-2008, as well as news video collections from WRDW, WTOC, and WJBF. Over 20,000 hours of raw news footage are preserved in these collection.  To search news collections on videotape use the BMAC link below.

Walter J. Brown Media Archives Collections (BMAC)

Brown Media Archives collections WSB News Videotape collection. The WSB materials in BMAC run from 1977-1989. See an archivist for assistance with materials dating from 1990-2008.

Highlights of our collections also include town films, including footage of Athens, Borman, Swainsboro, Cordele, and Fitzgeral, Georgia, home movie and amateur film collections, including footage from as early as 1917 in the Pebble Hill Plantation Film Collection as well as footage of rural Georgia in the Andrew Avery Home Movie Collection and footage of the B-52s in the Keith Bennett Home Movie Collectioninterviews in collections such as the Arnold Michaelis Library of Living History, the Del Ward Collection, and the Nixon-Gannon Interviews, as well as footage of the University of Georgia in the UGA Public Affairs Film & Videotape Collection and the UGA Athletic Dept Football Films, and Georgia music and folklore in the Georgia Music Hall of Fame Collection and Georgia folklore collection. These collections can be searched and browsed at the link above. 

This database is presently available on campus. For off campus access, use UGA's VPN. Directions are available at


Requesting and Using Materials

University of Georgia students may use footage from collections for which Brown Media Archives holds licensing rights for their coursework at no charge. 

Students wishing to use this footage must sign a licensing agreement with Media Archives. This agreement obligates students to give proper credit to the Archives for footage used and to renegotiate the licensing agreement if other uses beyond coursework are desired.

Footage requests should be submitted at least three weeks in advance of your deadline.

Much of the footage in our collection can already be viewed online through our databases, but some must be requested to be digitized. Here is a guide to requesting materials: 

Subject Guide

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Kathleen Carter
she / her
Special Collections Libraries
300 South Hull Street, Athens, GA 30602

Subject Guide

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Mary Miller
Richard B. Russell Building
UGA Special Collections Libraries
300 S. Hull St.