A dramatic reading of newspaper ads by emancipated slaves searching for family members in the 19th century
Last Seen: Voices from Slavery's Lost Families
Monday, February 18, 2019, 8:00pm
Directed by Valerie Joyce
American slavery tore apart families—separating wives from husbands, children from parents, siblings from siblings. After the Civil War, emancipated slaves searched for these lost loved ones by placing hopeful and often-heartbreaking newspaper ads. Villanova University’s Department of History and Department of Theatre present a dramatic reading of the ads during “Last Seen: Voices from Slavery’s Lost Families” on Monday, Feb. 18, 2019 at 8 p.m. at Villanova Theatre in Vasey Hall.
Director: Valerie Joyce
Scenic Designer: TBD
Costume Designer: TBD
Lighting Designer: TBD
Sound Designer: TBD
Stage Manager: TBD
The performance is a product of the “Last Seen” project, a collaboration between Villanova University’s Judith Giesberg, PhD, professor of History, and genealogists at Mother Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Philadelphia. Dr. Giesberg and her collaborators—including Villanova graduate students—uncovered and digitized more than 3,000 of former slaves’ Information Wanted ads and created an online database. The project, which has been featured on numerous media outlets including the CBS Evening News and NPR, has become a critically important tool for researchers, students and individuals looking to piece together their own family history. Visit informationwanted.org to learn more.