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Duke University hosts A Celebration of the Lives of John Hope and Aurelia Whittington Franklin, to honor the late historian and his late wife on the anniversary of their marriage on June 11, 1940. UNC-TV presents this event from Duke Chapel including high-profile speakers such as President Bill Clinton, who appointed John Hope Franklin to chair a national task force on race and attorney and civil rights leader Vernon Jordan, Franklin’s longtime friend.
The Franklins’ son and daughter-in-law, John Whittington and Karen Roberts Franklin, arranged the celebration, which incorporates a number of other speakers including a variety of Franklin family and friends, as well as an array of musical performances.
William Jefferson Clinton, 42nd President of the United States
Vernon Jordan, attorney and long-time friend
Other guest speakers:
Vivian Mildred Corbett Bailey, childhood friend of Dr. Franklin
Richard H. Brodhead, president, Duke University
Thavolia Glymph, professor, Duke University
Evelyn Brooks Higginbotham, professor, Harvard University
David Levering Lewis, professor, New York University
Emily Mann, director, McCarter Theatre, Princeton, N.J.
Genna Rae McNeil, professor, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
Mary Duke Biddle Trent Semans, trustee emerita, Duke University
Cynthia Gibbs Wilson, niece of John Hope and Aurelia Franklin
Musical performances include:
Fisk University Jubilee Singers
Aurelia, In Memoriam (1999) by T.J. Anderson
Eric Pritchard, violin, Duke University
In Memoriam John Hope Franklin (2009) by T.J. Anderson
James Ketch, trumpet, University of North Carolina
And for more on the early life and times of this civil rights pioneer, don't miss a special encore presentation of the first installment of the UNC-TV series, Biographical Conversations with John Hope Franklin.