The Oral History Program is part of the Smithsonian Institution Archives. The purpose of the program is to conduct interviews with current and retired members of the Smithsonian staff who have made significant contributions, administrative and scholarly, to the Institution. The project's goal is to supplement the published record and manuscript collections in the Archives, focusing on the history of the Institution and contributions to the increase and diffusion of knowledge made by its scholars.
The Ira Michael Heyman interviews were conducted as part of the Smithsonian Institution Archives Oral History Program because of his role as a member of the Smithsonian Board of Regents and then as Secretary of the Smithsonian from 1994 to 1999.
The Ira Michael Heyman Interviews were conducted in 1999, 2001, 2004 and 2007 by Smithsonian Archives Historian Pamela M. Henson. The first interview in 1999 was conducted by historian Marc Pachter. This collection consists of six interview sessions, totaling approximately 10 hours of recordings and 331 pages of transcript.
Additional documentation pertaining to Heyman can be found in the Records of the Office of the Secretary.
Ira Michael Heyman (1930-2011), law professor and tenth Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, received his A.B. in government from Dartmouth College in 1951, and his J.D. from Yale Law School in 1956. Heyman was a professor of Law at the University of California at Berkeley from 1959 to 1990 and also served as Vice Chancellor (1974-1980) and Chancellor (1980-1990). He served on the Smithsonian Institution Board of Regents from 1990 to 1994 and as the tenth Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution from 1994 to 1999. These interviews of Heyman complement a set of interviews at the Regional Oral History Office, University of California at Berkeley, which document his youth, education, and career at the University of California. Conducted by Smithsonian historian Pamela M. Henson, the Smithsonian interviews cover his role as a member of the Smithsonian Board of Regents, 1990-1994, especially his work on the Commission on the Future of the Smithsonian, and his tenure as Secretary from 1994 to 1999, especially the Enola Gay controversy. It also includes an interview of Heyman by Marc Pachter in 1999.
Smithsonian Institution Archives
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