14 feb 1968 & benning library
#OTD Wednesday 14 February 1968 The Benning Branch Library (3935 Benning Rd NE) held a Negro History Week program at 7:30pm. Library patrons saw two films: Frederick Douglass and They Beat the Odds.
The film about Douglass was most likely Frederick Douglass: The House on Cedar Hill, written and produced by Carlton Moss in 1953. The 17-minute documentary "presents a film portrait of Frederick Douglass, the runaway slave who became an editor, orator, and statesman. Includes historical documents, period drawings, photographs, and mementos found in the Douglass home in Washington, D.C."
According to the Evening Star, They Beat the Odds focused on individuals with successful careers.
The Benning Library, which was groundbroken on 23 February 1961, opened on 18 May 1962.
Please comment below. Do you remember seeing the films? On which floor/room would they have been shown? Do you remember the librarians and other staff? Do you know the history of They Beat the Odds film? You may comment privately here.
Photo source: Benning Library groundbreaking, left to right: Dr. Albert W. Atwood; Rev. A. J. Allen; Commissioner Robert E. McLaughlin; Charles M. Rogers; Clark Harmon; Librarian Harry Peterson; J.F. Ransaur, Sr.; Mrs. A.J. Edwards; Commissioner Frederick J. Clarke; and James J. McGrath. Courtesy, DC Public Library Special Collections. Paul Schmick, photographer.
For short docs film buffs, check out the WorldCat link to see which libraries have the Douglass film. University of Maryland, College Park has a copy!
Frederick Douglass: The House on Cedar Hill, IDMB
Frederick Douglass: The House on Cedar Hill, WorldCat
"Tomorrow in Washington: Concerts, Exhibits, Films Mark Negro History Week," Evening Star 13 February 1968.
"First Customers at Benning Library," Washington Post 19 May 1962.
Dorothy I. Heights/Benning Library History