Friday, October 31, 2014

Bermuda: Theater Boycott Sculpture - When Voices Rise - Hamilton, Bermuda

Theater Boycott Sculpture
"When Voices Rise"
Hamilton, Bermuda

N 32° 17.648 W 064° 47.185

Short Description: 

The sculpture "When Voices Rise" commemorates the 1959 theater boycott in Bermuda that resulted in the end of segregation in Bermuda. It is located on Church Street the west side of the Hamilton City Hall grounds.

Long Description:

On June 15, 1959 a boycott began when flyers were circulated urging black Bermudians to boycott movie theaters to protest their segregated seating policies. The movement gained momentum. On July 2, 1959 the theater owners announced an end to the racially segregated seating policies.

A plaque on a wall behind the sculpture gives the details of the event and the sculpture. It is inscribed:

{Coat of Arms of Bermuda}

"When Voices Rise"

In 1959, a series of peaceful demonstrations concluded which
marked the end of a racially segregated Bermuda and galvanized
the move towards Universal Adult Suffrage. It was on this site that a 
small, determined yet anonymous group, known as The progressive
Group, met and inspired public objection to segregated seating policies
in the island's theatres.

In 2009, local artist Chesley Trott was commissioned by the 
Corporation of Hamilton to create "When Voices Rize", to honour those
men and women who altered the course of Bermuda history.
This statue was unveiled on July 2nd 2009, the 50th anniversary
of this watershed event.

A plaque at the base of the sculpture is inscribed:

"When Voices Rise"
Chesley Trott
b. Bermuda 1930
Collection of the City of Hamilton

The stamp was issued by Bermuda in 2009 as part of a set of four stamps to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the theater boycott in Bermuda.

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