The Harlem Oral History Project


The Harlem Oral History was initiated by Sam Walton and Bryant Hayes. To develop the project, they have gathered an advisory board of community leaders and interested volunteers. These include Ron Grele, former director of the Columbia University Oral History Research Office, Dr. Muriel Petioni, a Harlem physician for over 70 years, who currently sits on the board for the Harlem Upper Manhattan Empowerment Zone, and filmmakers Gordon Skinner and Oren Jacoby. Among the valuable interviews recorded to date, are many prominent politicians of Harlem’s last century, including Charles Rangel, Percy Sutton, Basil Patterson, and David Dinkins.

This year, We Care initiated a Youth Media/Leadership Program to train young people in communication skills, including documentary filmmaking techniques, and introducing them to Harlem history and to mentors from the community. They will also begin research for the Harlem documentary film, Uptown Dreams, which will serve as a model for the project and attract national and worldwide interest. Channel 13 WNET has expressed their potential interest to be the presenting station for the film’s national broadcast on PBS.

The Hotel Theresa – 125th St. & 7th Ave.

2 Responses

  1. Paul Cronin


    Dear Sam

    We spoke some years ago when I was working on my documentary film about Columbia University 1968. I wonder if you are still around as I would very much like to chat.

    Many thanks.

    Paul Cronin
    cell (646) 757 0793

    October 30, 2015 at 7:28 am

    • Charlotte Cox

      Good morning,

      Sam, my father in law, passed away in early 2012. Thank you for reaching out. He was certainly a dedicated man. There is a site his son, Songhai, and I put together for him if you would like to visit it.

      August 8, 2016 at 9:44 am

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