Backyard HistoryCommunity News

Alexandria’s July 28 African American Short Film Festival Alive with Gripping Documentaries

Raised in privilege but degraded by persistent racial prejudice, Mary Church Terrell fought for the basic human right to be treated equally. (Courtesy photo)

On Saturday, July 28, 2018 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. the Alexandria Black History Museum will host a short film festival at The Lyceum featuring the works of two award winning studios in Washington D.C. and Richmond, Virginia. These directors highlight the stories of notable African American figures, demonstrating that African American history is America’s history.

The first two films are presented by Robin Hamilton, an Emmy-award winning journalist, television host, moderator and writer. Currently based in Washington, Robin is a correspondent for the local Tribune affiliate’s newsmagazine program, NewsPlus and has hosted DC50-TV’s award-winning, Black History Month series for the past four years. She wrote, produced and directed her first film, This Little Light of Mine: The Legacy of Fannie Lou Hamer, a famed Civil Rights activist. Her second documentary, Dignity and Defiance: A Portrait of Mary Church Terrell discusses the life of this 19th century crusader against racial injustice. The film also highlights the need to preserve Terrell’s former home in Washington, D.C., its dilapidated state poses a risk for destruction.

Documentary filmmakers Hannah Ayers and Lance Warren are presenting two short films. An Outrage, which premiered in 2017, discusses lynching in the American South. It has won multiple awards, including Audience Award at the Indie Grits Film Festival and the Jury Award for Best Short Documentary at the Middlebury New Filmmakers Festival. Their second film was produced with a grant from the Virginia Foundation for the Humanities. The Hail-Storm: John Dabney in Virginia, the forgotten story of a celebrated 19th century African American restaurateur in Richmond.

Join historian C.R. Gibbs as he moderates discussion in the second half of the film festival. He is the author/co-author of six books and a respected lecturer. Mr. Gibbs has worked with Smithsonian Institution museums and is a D.C. Humanities Council scholar.

Check for event information and to register, as some events have limited space and fees vary.  For more information about Historic Alexandria, visit

Mary Wadland

Mary Wadland is the Publisher and Editor in Chief of The Zebra Press, founded by her in 2010. Originally from Delray Beach, Florida, Mary is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Hollins College in Roanoke, VA and has lived and worked in the Alexandria publishing community since 1987.

Related Articles

Back to top button