Thank you to everyone who joined us at the Carroll Arts Center on June 19th for the premiere screening of the documentary “The Rock of our Ancestors”
The documentary explored the history, and challenges faced by small, local African-American churches and revealed how our local houses of worship are not only a source of strength and comfort, but also vessels of history; some tracing their roots back over 100 years. For these parishioners, the loss of the church is the loss of their legacy. It is not simply a building or that is at risk, it is the very heritage of their ancestors and the identity of an entire community that is at stake.
The project was initiated by the Rev. Douglas Sands of White Rock Independent Methodist Episcopal Church. Rev. Sands served as Executive Producer for the documentary and thanks his inspiration and tireless efforts, the story of Carroll County’s small churches is being told, in the words of their parishioners. CMC Operations Director, Aaron Chiusano, CMC Intern, Ms. Joan Keith and History Project Coordinator, Marion Ware were producers of the documentary.
The opening reception featured good food and fellowship among attendees and participants from a number of different church congregations. Thanks to Lynn Wheeler and the Carroll County Public Library who provided a beautiful display that included artifacts, courtesy of Michael Eckard, as well as books and posters featuring articles in CCT. The artifacts included an engraving of “The First Reading of the Emancipation Proclamation before the Cabinet,” engraving by A.H. Ritchie, 1866 (painting created by F.B. Carpenter at the White House in 1864).
Special thanks to Sandy Oxx, and the Carroll Arts Council staff for hosting the event. Ms. Dawn Briscoe for leading us in the National Anthem, to all of the choir members under the musical direction of Ms. Joan Holley. Our appreciation also goes out to Ambassador Blango Ross for giving the benediction, and CMC Board Chair William Eckles and Mr. Leo Eaton for their recognitions.
The evening was also an opportunity to honor Ms. Marion Ware for her 20 years of service to the Community Media Center and its mission to serve the residents of Carroll County and her commitment to the Carroll County History Project.
Fairview United Methodist Church
Gospel Spreading Church of God
Johnsville United Methodist Church
St. Luke’s United Methodist Church
Strawbridge United Methodist Church
Union Memorial Baptist Church
Union Street United Methodist Church
West Liberty United Methodist Church
White Rock Independent Methodist Episcopal Church
Carroll Community College
Carroll County Genealogical Society
Carroll County NAACP
Carroll County Public Library
Community Foundation of Carroll County
Historical Society of Carroll County
Hoffman, Comfort, Offutt, Scott & Halstad, LLP
JeannieBird Baking Company
Papa Joe’s Mexican Restaurant, Westminster
St. Paul’s United Church of Christ, Westminster
Suzanna Brosey, Stephanie Ciarrocchi, Leah Conigland, Mike Fell, Gina Haynie, Patrick J. Minor, Cody McLaughlin, Chris Miller, Josh Pasteur, Martin Pukownik, Brigid Shifflett, Sherry Taylor, Richard Turner
We continue to collect histories and information about our local churches. If you have information, historical photographs or would like to share your story please contact us at (410) 386-4415.
Stay tuned for more details about distribution plans for “The Rock of our Ancestors” including online and broadcast dates.
in the meantime, please enjoy this slide show from the live event.