Firing Line Broadcasts

From 1966 to 1999, the television series Firing Line with William F. Buckley Jr. was a venue for debate and discussion on political, social, and philosophical issues with experts of the day. The broadcast collection includes administrative files, program preparation materials, photographs, transcripts, sound recordings, and videotape copies of the 1,505 programs. Support for videotape preservation has been provided by the Mericos Foundation and the National Television and Video Preservation Foundation.

Firing Line Broadcast Records, Box 110, Hoover Institution Archives

Peter Robinson reflects on Firing Line

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Firing Line Broadcasts

More than 350 full programs and transcripts of all programs freely available online

Firing Line Broadcasts Finding Aid

Program descriptions, list of related materials, links to video clips on YouTube, and links to complete video programs on Amazon.com

Glue deposits on videotape

Firing Line 2-inch videotape preservation

Of the fifteen hundred Firing Line episodes, more than four hundred are recorded on 2-inch quad videotape, the first and oldest broadcast-quality videotape format. These videotapes come spooled on an open reel about a foot in diameter, and each videotape in its case weighs nearly twenty pounds. Specialized videotape preservation laboratories are used to assess, treat, and transfer the content of these 2-inch videotapes to modern videotape formats, as shown in this slideshow.

Slideshow
Cover of a publicity handout, 1967

Images from the Hoover Institution’s Firing Line collection

William F. Buckley Jr. hosted Firing Line on television from 1966 to 1999. The show is a window on twentieth-century American culture, politics, and television; one can see such guests as Ronald Reagan, Clare Booth Luce, Barry Goldwater, Malcolm Muggeridge, David Susskind, and Hugh Hefner discuss topics as varied as liberalism, religion, Alger Hiss, feminism, and the U.S. presidency.

Slideshow
William F. Buckley's Firing Line television series

Firing Line episodes available through Amazon Instant Video

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

More than one hundred seventy programs from William F. Buckley’s Firing Line television series are now available on Amazon Instant Video, which offers instant streaming on compatible devices.

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William F. Buckley's Firing Line television series

Firing Line episodes available for the first time through Amazon Instant Video

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Thirty-two programs from William F. Buckley’s Firing Line television series are now available on Amazon Instant Video, which offers instant streaming of the programs on compatible devices. Featured guests on those programs, which date from 1972 to 1999, include Newt Gingrich, Ronald Reagan, Thomas Sowell, Margaret Thatcher, Joan Baez, Christopher Hitchens, and Daniel Patrick Moynihan.

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William F. Buckley, Jr. meeting audience members Mrs. Fred Harris and her mother

Resolved: That Firing Line Fans Want to Know Why All Episodes Aren't Available

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

There’s a long answer and a short answer to this question. Because the short answer—“because not all of them have been preserved yet”—only leads to more questions, here’s the long answer....

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William F. Buckley's Firing Line television series

Is Firing Line the New Sex? (with apologies to Mary Eberstadt)

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Since its publication in Policy Review last year, Mary Eberstadt's exploration of the effects of unlimited sex and food on advanced nations, "Is Food the New Sex?" has been a perennial favorite on the web.

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Cover of a publicity handout, 1967

Firing Line clips are now available on Hoover’s website

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Clips of William F. Buckley’s Firing Line television series are now available on Hoover’s website and on YouTube.

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Cover of transcript for “Ten Years of Firing Line: 1966–1976: Part I” (program number S0251), Firing Line broadcasts, Hoover Institution Archives.

Firing Line Transcripts on Hoover Website

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Sixty Firing Line transcripts are available on Hoover’s Firing Line database, with more to come.

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Firing Line with William F. Buckley Jr.

Firing Line with William F. Buckley Jr.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

A select group of television broadcasts from the Firing Line collection held in the Hoover Archives is now available as DVDs.

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Contact

Contact L&A For assistance contact hooverarchives [at] stanford [dot] edu or 650-723-3563

Celebrating 50 Years of William F. Buckley Jr.’s Firing Line

Buckley Online Website

William F. Buckley's published work from 1951 to the present, including articles, books, columns, reviews, and speeches, is available on the Hillsdale College Buckley Online  website.

Resolved: That Firing Line Fans Want to Know Why All Episodes Aren't Available

Hoover Archives Staff Participate in Society of California Archivists’ Conference

Without a doubt one of our most popular collections at the Hoover Institution Archives is the Firing Line Broadcast Collection; as a result we get a lot of comments about it through the website. Read more.