WATERTOWN, MA—Legacy of Courage Film Premiere Set to Advance Massachusetts Stories of Black Activism in the Commonwealth  

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:  October 19, 2022

Contact: Judith Katz, Director of Development, 617-804-2356, judy@primarysource.org

What: World Premiere & Panel Discussion: “Legacy of Courage: Black Changemakers Past, Present, Future!” Free Admission

Where: Framingham State University – The Forum at the McCarthy Center

When: Thursday, October 27, 2022, at 7:00 PM

Primary Source is proud to announce that it has received funding from MassHumanities and its Advancing Massachusetts Stories initiative to launch the ground-breaking film Legacy of Courage: Black Changemakers in Massachusetts Past, Present, Future! This film was created by the Justice George Lewis Ruffin Society’s Long Road to Justice (LRJ) and was produced by the award-winning Northern Light Productions

This film chronicles the actions taken by African American changemakers over four centuries of confronting racial injustice as they aspired to a freer and more equal society. This 20-minute film uses archival sources, animation sequences, and interviews with scholars and youth activists to tell an inspiring story. Each “chapter” focuses on the agency, tenacity, and cooperative spirit of those who waged this struggle. Their actions are a template for young changemakers today who inherit this legacy– taking their first steps to help bend the long arc of history toward justice.

The film is accompanied by a dynamic teachers’ guide that will support educators and students to learn important Massachusetts stories and become inspired to advocate for positive change in our society. Students will learn that the pursuit of racial justice in Massachusetts has had a long history, and despite setbacks, the struggles of Black activists have moved our state toward racial equity. 

This project includes a world premiere event at Framingham State University’s Forum at the McCarthy Center on Thursday, October 27, at 7pm. Following the film screening, a panel discussion that includes the youth activists appearing in the film, the creative team, and educators will discuss why the stories of Black activism are important and how teachers can use the film to educate students and inspire activism. 

Primary Source will be conducting professional development sessions for educators in early 2023 so they are equipped to use the film and the accompanying teacher materials in their classrooms. The film, teacher materials, and professional development programs will be publicly available so teachers can use these resources to instruct about African American history and activism in pursuit of civil rights in Massachusetts. 

MassHumanities and Expanding Massachusetts Stories
Mass Humanities, a non-profit based in Northampton, conducts and supports programs that use history, literature, philosophy, and other humanities disciplines to enhance and improve civic life throughout Massachusetts. Since its founding in 1974, the organization has provided millions of dollars in support of thousands of humanities projects across the Commonwealth. Established as the state-based affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), Mass Humanities is an independent programming and grant-making organization that receives support from the NEH and the Massachusetts Cultural Council as well as private sources. For more information, visit www.masshumanities.org.

Primary Source 
Primary Source is an education nonprofit based in Watertown that for 33 years has worked with teachers to foster students’ knowledge, skills, and dispositions for thoughtful and engaged citizenship. Our value proposition is that we can have the greatest societal impact by working directly with teachers. Since our founding in 1989, we have grown in both scale and depth, now working with more than 2,500 educators each year in Massachusetts and beyond. For more information visit www.primarysource.org

Justice George Lewis Ruffin Society’s Long Road to Justice
Long Road to Justice seeks to educate viewers about the struggles, sacrifices, and successes of African Americans in seeking justice in Massachusetts since the arrival of the first slaves in 1638. It created a permanent exhibit that was installed at the Edward W. Brooke Courthouse in 2018 and the Legacy of Courage film in 2021. For more information visit https://www.masshist.org/longroad/05ruffin/ruffin.htm