Broad Street History Project

Produced by: 
Directed and edited entirely by local high school students from Scribe's Documentary History Project for Youth
Year: 
2003
Duration: 
83 min

From the Naval Yard to Progress Plaza, from the Civil War to Yellow Fever -- these are the themes of The Broad Street History Project, ten video documentaries produced by middle and high school students as part of Scribe Video Center's Documentary History Project for Youth. The series celebrates the exciting and often unknown stories of Broad street, Philadelphia's longest thoroughfare, with a history dating back to the days of William Penn and even earlier.

Mentored by historians, academics, archivists, librarians, community leaders, journalists, architects, and mural artists, the young filmmakers have crafted this series of short documentaries that use Broad Street as a springboard to explore the social history of Philadelphia. An original part of Penn's 1683 design of Philadelphia, Broad Street has for more than 300 years embodied Philadelphia's rich mix of ethnicities, social classes and land uses. These ten works bring to life the excitement and importance of Broad Street.

The shorts that make up this compilation are:

BROAD STREET STORIES
Directed by Julian Harris and Omar Estrada, 9 mins., 2003

CENTER SQUARE: A BRIEF HISTORY
Directed by Corey Cohen, 8:20 mins., 2003

THE CIVIL WAR
Directed by Brooke Asman, 7 mins., 2003

THE NAVAL SHIPYARD: THE IMPACT OF WOMEN AND THEIR TOOLS
Directed by Marchelle Smalls and Scribe Video Center, 13 minutes, 2003
A short documentary video about WWII female laborers at Philadelphiaís Naval Shipyard. Former shipyard workers share their stories of hardship, discrimination and the dire consequences of working with toxic materials. They also speak about their accomplishments as proud pioneers in a male-dominated industry.

NORTH AND SOUTH: LIFESTYLES ON BOTH SIDES
Directed by Kitty Garrett, 12 mins., 2003

PHILADELPHIA: A CITY DESTROYED BY DISEASE, REPAIRED BY COMMUNITY
Directed by Jodi Leigh Cantor, 7 mins., 2003

PROGRESS PLAZA
Directed by Taren Hall, 7:34 mins., 2003

A SEARCH FOR THE TRUTH: A STORY ABOUT SETTLERS AND NATIVE PEOPLES
Directed by Eric Willie, 4 mins., 2003

THE STORY OF THE DIVINE LORRAINE HOTEL
Directed by Christina Ortiz, 7 mins., 2003

UNIVERSAL FREEDOM: THE ARTS, THE PEOPLE AND THE DREAM
Directed by Rayna Guy and Melissa Rowe, 8:36 mins., 2003

Student filmmakers and the schools they attended during their participation in Scribe's Documentary History Project for Youth are Brooke Asman (Central High School), Jodi Cantor (Central High School), Corey Cohen (Central High School), Krystle Colon (Stoddard-Fleischer/Dobbins HS), Omar Estrada (Camden County Tecnical Schools), Kitty Garrett (Ben Franklin High School), Rayna Guy (Central High School), Taren Hall (Camden County Technical Schools), Julian Harris (University City High School), Christina Ortiz (Stoddard-Fleischer/Mastbaum ATVS), Melissa Rowe (CAPA), Marchelle Smalls (Parkway Center City High School), and Eric K. Willie (Central High School).

Film and video makers Sarah Poindexter, Erica Pennella, Pablo Colapinto, Shakti Jaisang, Christina Choe and Jessica Lakis served as Project Facilitators. Dr. Charles Hardy was the project's chief historian, Dr. Steve Parks served as humanities consultant, and Maria Cortese was the Project Coordinator for the overall Broad Street History Project.

Press: 

November 25, 1999 - "Coming Soon: Broad Look at Philadelphia's Most Famous Street" by Elisa Ludwig, Philadelphia Weekly's [behind the lines], Philadelphia, PA
June 19-25, 2003 - Screen Picks, Philadelphia City Paper, Philadelphia, PA

Public Screenings, Broadcasts and Festivals: 

May 29, 2003, Premiere at the Prince Music Theater, Philadelphia, PA, part of the Prince's Youth Media Jam 4
June 20, 2003, Street Movies screening at Project Home, Phildelphia, PA
June 21, 2003, Street Movies screening at Whole Foods Market, Phildelphia, PA
August 2003, USS Battleship New Jersey, Camden, N.J.
October 19 & October 22, 2003, Broadcast on WHYY TV-12, Philadelphia, PA