Civil Rights in the Sunshine State

The Alvin Sherman Library is currently exhibiting the Museum of Florida History’s Civil Rights in the Sunshine State. This rich and engaging exhibit explores the struggle of African Americans for equality in Florida from Reconstruction in 1877 through the 1970. Civil Rights in the Sunshine State is one of the first attempts to view the Florida civil rights movement through a statewide lens.

This exhibit and its three associated programs are a part of NSU’s Celebration of Black History Month. Each program will be presented in the Alvin Sherman Library’s Cotilla Gallery as well as through Zoom. Light refreshments will be served.  Full program abstracts are below the image. Thank you!

“The Lynching of Rubin Stacy”

Dr. David Kilroy, Chair, Department of Humanities and Politics- – Tuesday, February 15, 5:00-6:30PM

According to records maintained by the NAACP, between 1882 and 1968 there were 4,743 documented cases of lynching across the United States, with the majority of victims being African American.  A combination of their frequency and the system of white supremacy which condoned these mob killings ensured that most victims were soon forgotten. The case of Rubin Stacy, who was lynched by a mob in 1935 on what is today the corner of Davie Boulevard and SW 31st Avenue, stands out though because it was a recorded in a number of searing photographs taken that day. From the NAACP fliers that used these images in support of its anti-lynching campaign to the recent decision of the City of Fort Lauderdale to rename a stretch of Davie Boulevard in his memory, this talk will revisit the story of Rubin Stacy’s murder and photographs which propelled it to national attention.


“Eula Johnson and the Fort Lauderdale Wade-ins”

Ms. Janay Joseph, senior history major at NSU, and Ms. Tara Chadwick, Artist, and Curator of Exhibitions at History Fort Lauderdale – Friday, February 18, 5:00-6:30PM

Prior to the 1961 Wade-ins on Fort Lauderdale Beach, and a landmark district case, public facilities in Broward County were segregated. Eula Johnson was the first woman president of the Broward chapter of the NAACP. Johnson, along with Dr. Von D. Mizell coordinated and organized a series of protests called the “Wade-ins” in the summer of 1961 to desegregate the beaches. Both faced white supremacist backlash during and after the protests. The City of Fort Lauderdale eventually sued Johnson and Mizell for “disturbing the peace” during their demonstrations. Johnson and Mizell won their case, which set the precedent for the future desegregation of Broward County. This talk will be led by Janay Joseph and Tara Chadwick on Johnson’s legacy, and the work that can be done today within our current political climate. A preview of the documentary short film “She Had a Dream: Eula Johnson’s Fight to Desegregate Broward County” will also be featured, along with a discussion on the research and production of the film.


“Social Change through Art” – Open Classroom Series

Ms. Kandy Lopez-Moreno, M.F.A., Associate Professor in the Department of Communication, Media, and the Arts – Monday, February 21st, 5:00-6:30PM

Professor Lopez-Moreno will discuss how contemporary artists use art as a form of social activism to challenge the historic use of images as a tool to marginalize women of color. This discussion is the first of the multi-part Open Classroom Series.  The Open Classroom Series, a collaboration between the Farquhar Honors College and the Alvin Sherman Library, features open conservations with scholars from various disciplines.  These academics will share their expertise on important issues and provide insightful perspectives rarely seen in the media. Farquhar Honors College Dean Andrea Nevins will host and moderate the discussion.