THE PRICE FOR FREEDOM | THE PLAY
THE LIVES AND DEATHS OF HARRY T. AND HARRIETTE V. MOORE
The first civil rights martyrs, 1951
There are many well-known figures whose names have become synonymous with the civil rights movement of the 20th century. Many that have truly paid “The Price for Freedom”. Martin Luther King Jr. Rosa Parks. Malcolm X. Medgar Evans. Emmett Till. The list sadly goes on. Two names that are not as easily recognized by most are the very first martyrs of the civil rights movement – and the only married couple to be assassinated for the cause. Educator, activists, and civil rights leaders Harry T. Moore and his wife Harriette V. S. Moore.
At 10:20pm, on a foggy December 25th in 1951, a bomb exploded under their small shotgun style home on the outskirts of Mims, Florida – directly under their bedroom. It was both Christmas day, and Harry and Harriette’s 25th wedding anniversary.
Harry T. Moore died on his way to the hospital in Sanford, FL in a car being driven by his brother-in-law George Simms. Harriet’s death came 9 days later, just after saying final goodbyes to her husband at the mortuary.
The story of the Moores is one that is equal parts civil rights history, and a personal tale of love, commitment and family. Sadly, it is a story that has for decades receded into dim memory. And yet the voices of these two pioneering leaders in the early struggle for civil rights call out through the decades not to be forgotten.
We wish to thank Gregory Marquette, the author of the book "The Bomb Heard Around The World" which inspired this play, "The Price For Freedom". In addition, we would like to offer thanks to the staff of the Harry T. and Harriette V. Moore Memorial Cultural Complex, Inc - including Sonya Mallard and Carshonda Wright, as well as U.S. Congressman Charlie Crist for continuing to believe.
Producer Walter T. Shaw, the founder of Top Cat II Productions has spent the last 4 years painstakingly chronicling and archiving the life and assassination of Harry and Harriette Moore, and now joins with playwright John DiDonna to bring this tale of affecting personal tragedy and poignant historical sacrifice to the stage with their new work “The Price for Freedom”. In bringing this story to life, it also serves to chronicle the beginnings of the NAACP in Florida, the case of the Groveland Four, as well as the very start of what we now know as the modern Civil Rights Movement.
JD Jackson is an Actor, Audiobook Narrator, Educator and devoted family man. He honed his craft at Temple University, where he received his MFA. He's enjoyed success in the Film/Television industry, guest starring on such shows as House, ER, Law & Order, & Third Watch. He has won several awards for his audiobook narration, including several Earphones Awards, has been nominated for multiple Audie Awards including a nom for Best Male Narrator of the Year, and was recently inducted into Audiofile Magazine's Golden Voices Hall of Fame. The Bomb Heard Around the World is a book on the lives and deaths of Harry T. and Harriette V. Moore. It is available in hardcover and has recently been published as an audiobook. JD Jackson is the acclaimed narrator chosen for the project.