The Newseum is a large “interactive museum of news” built by the Freedom Forum to honor freedom of the press and journalism. It is designed to promote greater public understanding and appreciation for First Amendment freedoms and the rich history of journalism.
Newseum is located in Washington, D.C.
The original Newseum opened in 1997 in Rosslyn, Virginia, where it attracted well over two million visitors from across the world. Later, however, leaders of the Freedom Forum realized that the museum could make a more definitive impact at a new location, and so in March 2002 the Newseum closed its doors. In March 2007, Freedom Forum and Newseum chief executive officer Charles L. Overby announced that the new museum would be located at 555 Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington, D.C., between the White House and the Capitol Building and near the Smithsonian museums on the National Mall. It opened on April 11, 2008.
The Newseum features a seventy-four-foot high marble wall inscribed with the text of the First Amendment, fifteen theatres, nearly 6,200 artifacts, and two state-of-the art television studios. The total cost of the Newseum is $435 million. The building was sold in January 2019 to John Hopkins University for $372.5 million. The building will remain open through 2019.
David L. Hudson, Jr. is a law professor at Belmont who publishes widely on First Amendment topics. He is the author of a 12-lecture audio course on the First Amendment entitled Freedom of Speech: Understanding the First Amendment (Now You Know Media, 2018). He also is the author of many First Amendment books, including The First Amendment: Freedom of Speech (Thomson Reuters, 2012) and Freedom of Speech: Documents Decoded (ABC-CLIO, 2017). This article was originally published in 2009.