The Early History of the Friends of the Kennedy Center (1965–1971)

Founding members of the Friends of the Kennedy Center Ethel Garrett, Polly Wisner Fritchey, and Jane Thompson, along with Avis Howard Thayer Bohlen and Ambassadors Llewellyn Thompson and Charles Bohlen attend the annual Friends luncheon in the Grand Foyer in 1971. Photo by unknown, courtesy of the Kennedy Center Archives.
Ballot mailed to Kennedy Center Trustees to approve the resolution creating the Friends of the Kennedy Center, 1965. Courtesy of the Kennedy Center Archives.
Friends Founding Chairman Lily Polk Guest, an integral part of the Friends’ founding, with Kennedy Center General Director William McCormick Blair, Jr. and other staff members at the construction site, 1969. Photo by unknown, courtesy of the Kennedy Center Archives.
The Kennedy Center Information Center behind the Tom Sawyer Project’s painted fence panels, circa mid-1960s. Photo by unknown, courtesy of the Kennedy Center Archives.
Left: Students from the Peabody School watching the installation of marble at the Kennedy Center, 1968. Right: Peabody School students performing a Christmas Pageant in the Kennedy Center Information Center, 1968. Photos by Hans Trebor Associates, courtesy of the Kennedy Center Archives.
Friends touring the Kennedy Center construction site, circa late-1960s. Photos by unknown, courtesy of the Kennedy Center Archives.

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