a billy graham center
archives exhibit

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“Well, let me tell you something. Now, when you go down there [where the tent was at Washington and Hill Streets], we who remember that as just plain dirt down there and then the sawdust on top of the dirt and then a piece of canvas stuck up in the air, that’s holy ground to us.... That’s holy ground to the people of Los Angeles that know Jesus. It’s now holy ground, to some degree, to the world because it started there.”

Roy McKeown in an oral history interview in 1971
(he was on the staff of Youth for Christ and a member
of the Christ for Greater Los Angeles Committee)

The Christ for Greater Los Angeles Committee, of which McKeown was a member, sponsored a tent evangelistic campaign in 1949 at that spot, led by evangelist Billy Graham. The dramatic events of these meetings first brought Graham to the attention of the general public of the United States. This exhibit tells the story of those meetings, making particular use of contemporary recordings of Graham’s sermons and later recordings of the memories of the local Committee members. Read the rest of the introduction.

This online exhibit displays some of the documents that tell the story of this historic Los Angeles campaign. Above all, it includes a complete set online of the audio recordings of Graham’s sermons from September through November (posted online in the exhibit on the day they were preached), as well as recordings and transcripts of oral history interviews with participants. Letters, photos, minutes, newspaper coverage and other documents are also part of this exhibit. We hope all who visit it will have a better and fuller understanding of this major event in the history of American Christianity. Beyond that, we hope that the presentation of these recordings and documents that reach back into the late 1940s will lead guests to consider for their own lives these messages of salvation and eternal life through Jesus Christ. If you would like more information about what it means to trust and follow Jesus Christ or how to become one of his followers, see our resources for spiritual help.

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© 2009
 Notice: This exhibit is for the enjoyment and education of the users of the BGC Archives Website.   Material in it is protected by copyright and any use, publication or copying is strictly prohibited   without written permission.