Eastern Correctional Institution Inmates Start Black History Mon - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

ECI Inmates Start Black History Month with Frederick Douglass Performance

Posted: Feb 01, 2018 9:42 PM Updated:
Black History Month Celebration in the Eastern Correctional Institution  (WBOC PHOTO) Black History Month Celebration in the Eastern Correctional Institution (WBOC PHOTO)

WESTOVER, Md.- Eastern Correctional Institution in Westover kicked off Black History Month on Thursday with a special performance. Actor Bill Grimmette brought back to life the iconic abolitionist, and Maryland-native, Frederick Douglass.

"This is a teaching tool," said Grimmette. " You can read about history in a thousand places but a living history performance gives you a different perspective."

The uplifting performance focused on the power of education.

"I want to inspire people to read more," said Grimmette.

The actor says the story of Frederick Douglass is one that the inmates can relate to.

"Imagine you have a life sentence since birth, that's what slavery was like," he explained.

The performance was followed by a Q&A session where the inmates got the opportunity to learn even more about the actor and the character.

"It was wonderful," said Joseph Scott, one of the inmates in the audience. "It was powerful and educative."

Other inmates said this was a great opportunity to honor the role of African Americans in the history of the nation learning lessons from those who came before them.

"History is important, if you don't know where you've been you're probably not gonna know where you're going and you're destined to repeat yourself," said Tony Chatman-Bey, another one of the inmates who enjoyed the presentation.

The event was organized by Maryland Humanities in partnership with ECI.

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