Valerie Harris (LTA ’08, ACG ’07, ACG ’05) presents “A Highway Runs Through It…A Community History of Darby Township,” documents the history of African Americans in this once rural community on the outskirts of Philadelphia. The feature-length video doc combines vintage photographs, historic and newspaper research, interviews with longtime residents, and a compelling narrative to trace the story of Darby Township’s African American community, from 18th century indentured servitude and post-civil war prosperity, through the Great Migration of the 1920s, to the impact of the redevelopment movement of the late 1950s and eminent domain on Darby Township today. Despite widespread community displacement, the loss of cultural landmarks, and increasing political marginalization, “A Highway Runs Through It….” celebrates the resilience of Darby Township’s African American community, and the enduring spirit that has defined their presence in Delaware County for more than 220 years. View the documentary Friday, October 28 at 7:00pm at First African Baptist Church, 901 Clifton Ave., Sharon Hill, PA. For info, call 610.461.0350 or email Valerie via email@example.com.
Valerie Harris is a writer, teacher and media producer. Since 1995, much of her work has been dedicated to assisting individuals in seeing themselves as active participants in the cultural landscape of their communities. As a companion piece to “A Highway Runs Through It….”. which began as a memoir-writing workshop with seniors in Darby Township, PA, Valerie has collaborated with photo collector, David King, Jr. and photographer/graphic artist, Patricia Gunter to publish “A Highway Runs Through It… A History of Darby Township’s Black Community.” The 100-page pictorial features essays and many of the vintage photographs used in the film.