WWS Calendar

Woodrow Wilson

Princeton Exhibit Examines Contested Legacy of Woodrow Wilson

Apr 4, 2016 (All day)
Bernstein Gallery


Open to the Public

In the Nation's Service? Woodrow Wilson Revisited
April 4, 2016 - October 28, 2016

Exhibit Hours
Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Groups of 10 or more are asked to schedule a tour by contacting Elisabeth Donahue at 609-258-5988 or edonahue@princeton.edu.

Democracy demands dialogue. This is why the contested legacy of Woodrow Wilson forms the focus of a new exhibition at Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs.

Opening April 4, the show, “In the Nation’s Service? Woodrow Wilson Revisited,” documents not only the positive but also the negative aspects of Wilson’s tenure as 13th president of Princeton University and 28th president of the United States.

The exhibit, which will run through Oct. 28, will be located in Robertson Hall’s Bernstein Gallery and is available online beginning April 4.

The exhibit also encourages participation through the use of the #RevisitWilson hashtag, which will appear on digital screens at the gallery space. You can read a recap of posts on Storify.

Among historians, Wilson is consistently ranked as one of the country’s great presidents, noted for his successful domestic legislative agenda in his first term and international achievements in his second. At Princeton, many entities bear Wilson’s name, honoring his important contributions to both the institution and the nation.

Yet, Wilson was also a highly divisive figure in his time, alienating many and denying others the fullness of their humanity on racial grounds. Under his watch, Princeton University remained a bastion of white Anglo-Saxon Protestantism, and, as U.S. president, the federal civil service was segregated, closing one of the few paths to African American advancement.

The exhibition on Woodrow Wilson draws on modern scholarship, newly digitized resources and Princeton’s special collections to paint a more complete picture of Wilson than is often presented, highlighting the ways in which he failed a great number of Americans. Through correspondence, writings, photographs, newspapers and other documents that place Wilson in historical context, visitors will gain a fuller understanding of his complexities and why he continues to evoke both admiration and opprobrium nearly a century after his death.

The exhibit is sponsored by Princeton University in partnership with the University’s Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library, a division of the Department of Rare Books and Special Collections, and the University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs

Questions? Email revisitwilson@princeton.edu.