Sources of Country Music

The Sources of Country Music, 1975  – Thomas Hart Benton


In partnership with the American Library Association, the National Endowment for the Humanities is distributing large, high-quality reproductions of great American art, free of charge, to schools and libraries nationwide. The program is called Picturing America and its goal is to give Americans a deeper appreciation for our country’s history by introducing them to its great art. These masterpieces are now on display at the McCormick County Library.

            Picturing America is composed of forty, carefully selected works of art spanning several centuries – all by American painters, sculptors, photographers, and architects. They provide creative ways to explore our nation’s history and ideals. What better way to see the courage of a great leader than through Emanuel Leutze’s Washington Crossing the Delaware? How better to appreciate the power of American democracy than through Norman Rockwell’s Freedom of Speech? Architectural landmarks like the Brooklyn Bridge and Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater convey our sense of optimism and ingenuity. American landscapes, such as Albert Bierstadt’s Looking Down Yosemite Valley, display our nation’s fascination with the West and the influence of the frontier.

            These and thirty-five other masterpieces enable viewers to transcend the present and witness the dramatic unfolding of our history. Picturing America brings our nation’s art and history directly to curious minds of all ages, all over the country. The program itself is an example of democratic education. Neither income nor geography is an obstacle to participation. And it is designed to appeal to everyone. The images are appropriate for children and adults, and the narrative qualities of the selected works of art allow them to be appreciated by both skilled and untrained eyes. The McCormick County Library invites you to take advantage of this opportunity to deepen your understanding and appreciation of America’s cultural landscape.

            The Picturing America collection will be on display for several months in the library. The library is normally open Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 11 am until 8 pm, Friday from 9 am until 6 pm, Saturday and Sunday from 1 pm until 5 pm. The library is closed on Mondays. For more information call the library at 864-852-2821.