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WOOLWORTH PLANS MULTI-CITY DISTRIBUTION OF MARTIN LUTHER KING JR. VIDEO TAPE

WOOLWORTH PLANS MULTI-CITY DISTRIBUTION OF MARTIN LUTHER KING JR. VIDEO
 TAPE
 NEW YORK, Feb. 14 /PRNewswire/ -- Woolworth Corporation (NYSE: Z), in observance of Black History Month, announced plans here today to distribute a video tape about the making of an historic mural depicting the life and achievements of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. to schools, colleges and other educational facilities in New York City and other cities across the nation.
 The 24-minute documentary, sponsored by the large multinational retailer, is entitled "Don Miller and the Making of the Martin Luther King Jr. Mural, an Artist's Tribute." It focuses on contemporary artist Don Miller's creation of the 7-foot-high, 56-foot-long mural that is on permanent display in the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library in Washington, D.C.
 The video tape recounts the extensive research undertaken by Miller in his two years of work on the mural, which was completed in 1986. The video was viewed today at a special screening in Woolworth's headquarters in lower Manhattan by a group of prominent African-American and governmental leaders.
 Harold E. Sells, chairman and chief executive, said, "It is the hope of Woolworth Corporation, in making this video available, that the example of Dr. King's meaningful work will be a positive influence on the lives and values of young people throughout the nation."
 Among the guests at the special screening were Miller; Dr. Benjamin L. Hooks, executive director of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People; Frank Lomax III, executive vice president of the National Urban League; Virgil Ecton, senior vice president of the United Negro College Fund; New York State Lieutenant Governor Stan Lundine; New York Mayor David N. Dinkins, and Joseph A. Fernandez, Chancellor of the New York City Public Schools. Copies of the video were presented to these organizations and to the state and city of New York by Sells.
 The Rev. Wyatt Tee Walker and Dorothy Cotton, close former associates of Dr. King, who were portrayed in the mural and who appear in the video, were also present as were the video's producer-director, Eugenia Wiltshire and its writer, Dr. Clement Price, associate professor of history at Rutgers University.
 Woolworth Corporation's underwriting of the video was its latest and most-extensive effort to communicate the riveting story of the making of the King mural. Four years ago, to mark Dr. King's birthday, the retailing company began its on-going sponsorship of seven travelling exhibits of reproductions of the mural. In 1991, in observance of Black History Month, Woolworth sponsored an extended lecture tour by Miller, including presentations in a number of New York public schools and at predominately black colleges across the nation.
 The artist, who is 68 and a graduate of The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art in New York, was born in Jamaica, and has worked most of his life in Montclair, N.J. He has illustrated over 40 books and has exhibited his work in museums, colleges and galleries in the United States, Jamaica and Africa.
 Woolworth Corporation operates a total of approximately 9,400 stores, consisting of more than 7,650 specialty stores and 1,740 general merchandise stores in more than 40 formats, including Foot Locker, Woolworth, Champs Sports, Lady Foot Locker and Afterthoughts. Woolworth Corporation currently operates stores in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Germany, England, France, Italy, Luxembourg, Belgium, the Netherlands and Australia.
 BACKGROUND
 CREATION OF MARTIN LUTHER KING JR. VIDEO TAPE
 The video tape on the making of the Martin Luther King Jr. mural by the artist Don Miller is a story within a story.
 First and foremost, it is the stirring account of the life and achievements of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., the extraordinary and courageous leader who dedicated his life to the cause of constructive social change. At the same time, it is the story of the extensive research and painstaking attention to detail involved in the creative process as Miller, in a concentrated two-year period, committed his personal vision of the highlights of Dr. King's life to canvas.
 Miller, a prominent New Jersey artist, initially contacted the board of trustees of the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library in Washington, D.C. in early 1984, with the proposal to paint a mural documenting the life of Dr. King. Miller, whose professional career extends over 40 years, conceptualized a work that would capture the sweep of events of the 1950s and 1960s in which Dr. King played a singular role.
 In Montclair, N.J., where the mural was painted, Miller chose as his studio a 2,500-square-foot converted ballroom, large enough to accommodate two 28-foot panels. Over the many months of the project, it became more than a studio. It was the place where many civil rights leaders, who had worked with Dr. King, as well as artists, friends and associates of Miller, assembled to witness the evolution of an idea into an artistic statement. While Miller conducted many oral-history interviews in the studio, he also traveled to places in the South to talk to individuals who had been associated with many of the movement's historic events.
 On his first trip, in June, 1984, he traveled to Montgomery, Ala., where he met with E.D. Nixon, a veteran of the civil rights struggle and the person most influential in selecting the then 26-year-old Dr. King to lead the famous Montgomery Bus Boycott, in 1955-1956.
 Other oral-history interviews were conducted with such other well known figures in the movement as Rosa Parks, the Rev. Ralph D. Abernathy, Mayor Andrew Young of Atlanta, Dorothy Cotton, and the Rev. Wyatt Tee Walker. Their reminiscences and Miller's frequent recourse to books, articles and photographs on Dr. King shaped the artist's interpreting the movement on canvas.
 Miller's long work on the Martin Luther King Jr. mural came to a close just as the nation prepared to celebrate Dr. King's birthday on Jan. 20, 1986. It was unveiled in a ceremony before 9,000 people in Washington, D.C. where it is on permanent display in the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library there.
 -0- 2/14/92
 CONTACT: Frances E. Trachter of Woolworth, 212-553-2394
CO: WOOLWORTH CORPORATION
IN REA
ST: NEW YORK (NY)


-- NY024 -- 9041 02/14/92
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Date:Feb 14, 1992
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