PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Fifty years ago, a battle for civil rights spread across America.
But few photographers captured the struggle like Teenie Harris of the Hill District.
His timeless work is now on display at the Carnegie Museum of Art.
“This is film footage that my father took of the March on Washington,” said archivist Charlene Fogge-Barnett.
Fogge-Barnett refers to film clips she has donated to the Carnegie Museum of Art, where she helped organize images shot by the legendary photographer.
The exhibit, “Teenie Harris Photographs: Civil Rights Perspectives,” marks the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights movement in Pittsburgh.
“This is one of what we call our classic Teenie Harris photos,” she points out, “and it depicts men and women gathering at what is now know as Freedom Corner.”
The photo depicts Pittsburgh leaders like Jimmy Joe Robinson, Nate Smith and Byrd Brown. Names etched in history. Faces captured in black-and-white. There’s a photo of Charlene’s father, Bishop Charles Fogge, was also a leader of the local movement. If it was happening in Pittsburgh, Teenie Harris was there.
The Carnegie Museum of Art owns more than 80,000 images.
“We’ve scanned in close to 65,000 of the black-and-white photography, which spans from the late 1930s to the late 1970s,” the archivist says.
This exhibit includes 25 of those photographs. Teenie Harris spread his message for the famed Pittsburgh Courier.
As Teenie told us on a visit 25 years ago, “It’s not what you can do for yourself, it’s what you can do for your people. And I’ve done something.”
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