William Still: Film and Discussion

The Underground Railroad: The William Still Story - Film & Discussion

  willstllThe film blends stories, characters and context with evocative reenactments, new historical perspectives and sometimes shocking accounts. The predominant "voices" in the documentary are those of William Still and a selection of freedom seekers whose stories help define the era. Their actual words are often used, taken from letters and memoirs. William Still was chairman of the Philadelphia Vigilance Committee, a secretive organization that offered runaway slaves desperately-needed assistance.  Still was among the most significant figures in the abolition of slavery The Underground Railroad, a complex network of freed slaves, white abolitionists, sympathizers and safe houses that stretched from Philadelphia to what is now southern Ontario, delivered and estimated 40,000 men, women and children from bondage. Still carefully interviewed fugitive slaves who came to him for help, recording where they came from, the names of family members and how they escaped. His book is regarded as the most authentic account of some of America’s most heroic stories. It was an extraordinary risk to keep such records, risking his own freedom to be able to tell the stories of those who had the courage to run. While there is no denying the contribution of white abolitionists, particularly Quakers, the evidence shows that in an overwhelming number of cases the “conductors” operating these safe houses were themselves former slaves, or the children of former slaves. The film is 60 minutes and will be followed by a discussion on the Underground Railroad in Philadelphia, how that experience relates to the Civil Rights Movement 100 years later and to issues today. The Underground Railroad is an amazing example of a grass roots, mass movement of people confronting oppression, taking action, and changing the world we lived in.

This Program is free, open to everyone and will take place at:

  Monday September 29, 5:30pm Walnut Street West Library 201 S 40th Street Tuesday September 30, 7pm Community Education Center 3500 Lancaster Avenue Thursday October 2, 5:30pm Breslin Training Center 1199C Hospital Workers Union 100 S. Broad Street, 10th floor Saturday October 4, 2pm Wynnefield Branch Library 5325 Overbrook Avenue Saturday October 4, 2pm Lovett Branch Library 6945 Germantown Avenue Sunday October 5, 2pm Joseph E. Colman NW Regional Library 68 West Chelten Avenue Sunday October 5, 2pm First Unitarian Church of Philadelphia 2125 Chestnut Street Wednesday October 8, 3:30pm Cecil B. Moore Branch Library 2320 Cecil B. Moore Avenue Thursday October 9, 4pm Lucien E. Blackwell West Philadelphia Regional Library 125 South 52nd Street Monday October 20, 5:30pm David Cohen Ogontz Branch Library 6017 Ogontz Avenue   Share
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Posted in Hidden History, Underground Railroad In Philadelphia
2 Comments » for William Still: Film and Discussion
  1. Nancy and John Cotter says:

    Do we need to register in advance?

  2. Kat Eyerly says:

    You do not need to register for the Film & Discussion. Just show up! 🙂

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