Struggle & Hope
By Kari Barber
Following the Civil War, all-Black towns emerged in what is now modern-day Oklahoma. By 1905, Black families seeking to make a new start, enjoy fellowship and get a reprieve from widespread racism, acquired one and a half million acres of land in the state.
Initially founded in an effort to convince the United States to create an all-Black state, most of these towns have since been swallowed up by nearby counties and cities...a few cling heroically to life. Residents now fight to ensure that their towns retain independence and character. Local community members and historians - Boley Municipal Judge Henrietta Hicks, Oklahoma Historical Society board member and Clearview resident Shirley Nero, historian Bruce Fisher, and musician and Taft native Dr. Harold Aldridge - give contemporary commentary as the story unfolds. A local authentic soundtrack links the past to the present as they search for a way forward.