Celebrating 50 Years With You

May 6, 2021

As we join NPR in celebrating their 50 years of storytelling and public service, one thing is clear: NONE OF IT WOULD HAVE BEEN POSSIBLE WITHOUT THE SUPPORT OF LISTENERS LIKE YOU. By donating, you are an important part of what makes everything you love from WSHU and NPR a reality.

There is so much more we can all accomplish together. NPR and WSHU have new ideas and ambitions to reach more people with quality programming and trusted news. But we need your support to get there.

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Reflecting: 50 years of stories that informed, inspired, & entertained

In 1971, NPR entered a shifting — yet limited — information landscape.
Credit George Geesey

How NPR Shattered the Old Model of Broadcast Journalism
Monday, May 3, 2021, marked the 50th anniversary of NPR's first on-air original broadcast. In 1971, the three major television networks' evening news shaped the nation's perception of what was important in the world. With no social media, no internet and an abiding trust in media, NPR entered a rather restricted information landscape. All Things Considered did not try to compete directly; instead, to find its place, the program took a shot at a different style of storytelling.

Credit Wally McNamee/Corbis via Getty Images

The 1st NPR On-Air Broadcast
The debut episode of All Things Considered on May 3, 1971, documented all sides of the antiwar protest with a visceral sound portrait, taking listeners to the heart of America's agonies over the war in Vietnam.

Marvin Gaye
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NPR's 50 Favorite Songs of 1971
Bowie, Dylan, Baez, Gaye. Critics widely consider 1971 one of the best years in music history. For NPR's 50th anniversary, public radio stations turn back the clock and reflect on the year's best tracks.

Credit Saul Loeb/Getty Images

The Last — And Next — 50 Years of NPR: 1A Reflects
Featuring interviews with leaders and emerging voices, we look at the last 50 years of NPR, examine its historical weak spots and hear how change is being made in the present and decades ahead.

More great stories celebrating NPR's 50 years are available here.