Full-Length Firing Line Videos Now Available Online

Wednesday, February 15, 2017
William F. Buckley, Jr. and boxer Muhammad Ali discuss the war in Vietnam.

For the first time since acquiring the collection in 2001, the Hoover Institution Library & Archives is hosting, free-of-charge, full-length Firing Line videos online through its digital collections website and YouTube channel. With a roster of guests including Ronald Reagan, Margaret Thatcher, Milton Friedman, Groucho Marx, Tom Wolfe, Jack Kerouac, Woodward and Bernstein, Barry Goldwater, Joan Baez, Hugh Hefner, and others, Firing Line serves as one of the most important and complete records of political and cultural movements in twentieth-century America.

Firing Line episodes from Hoover's collection first became available to a wide audience on Amazon DVD in 2008 and Amazon Prime in 2012. The release of Hoover’s digital collections website in 2016 prompted a shift in platforms for hosting Firing Line content. The digital collections website not only features full-length videos for 359 shows, but also downloadable transcripts for most of the 1,505 Firing Line shows, as well as fully-searchable context and metadata about each show. 

Archivists continue to work with specialized videotape preservation laboratories each year to preserve and make available more Firing Line programs. As more episodes become available in digital format, they will be uploaded to Hoover’s digital collections website and YouTube channel.

Launched in 1966, Firing Line aired for thirty-three years and featured one-on-one debates between Buckley and the world’s leading figures in politics, entertainment, journalism, and academia. The Hoover Institution Library & Archives holds the complete Firing Line archive of original broadcast video recordings, administrative files, program research files, photographs, transcripts, and other materials from the show.

For additional information contact: hoover_visuals [at] stanford.edu.