Chapin Library to Host July 4 Reading of Declaration of Independence, Frederick Douglass Speech

Media contact: Gregory Shook, director of media relations; tele: 413-597-3401; email: [email protected]

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass., July 3, 2019—The Chapin Library of rare books at Williams College will host the annual July 4 reading of the Declaration of Independence by actors from the Williamstown Theatre Festival at 1:30 p.m. The event is free and open to the public.

Actors (including Warner Miller, Thomas Sadoski, and Priscilla Lopez) will read from the second floor outside balcony of Sawyer Library. Visitors should gather on the library quad west of Sawyer Library and between Schapiro and Hollander halls. In case of inclement weather, the event will take place inside Sawyer Library.

Since 1987, Williams College and the Williamstown Theatre Festival have made it an annual tradition to celebrate Independence Day by reading the Declaration of Independence, the British reply of September 1776, and the Preamble to the U.S. Constitution. This year’s reading will also include a selection from “What to a Slave is the Fourth of July,” a speech by Frederick Douglass.

Additionally, all of the Chapin Library’s collection of the Founding Documents will be on view together with historic documents relating to the American women’s suffrage movement. Visit the Chapin Gallery between 12 and 1 p.m., or 2 and 3 p.m., on the second floor of Sawyer Library (Room 406).

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For building locations on the Williams campus, please consult the map outside the driveway entrance to the Security Office located in Hopkins Hall on Main Street (Rte. 2), next to the Thompson Memorial Chapel, or call the Office of Communications 413-597-4277. The map can also be found on the web at www.williams.edu/map

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