Quintella Harrell,10, (center) demonstrating with fellow students, Selma, Alabama in March of 1965 by Dan Budnik.
Dr. Quintella Harrell, 60, stands on the front porch of her mother’s home in Selma, Alabama, on March 5, 2015.
Two photographs separated by fifty years. Dr. Quintella Harrell looks back to her ten-year-old self, Selma and the fight for civil rights. The photograph depicts a small girl staring directly at the photographer, her arms steadfastly locked with a group of her peers. Quintella B. Harrell was ten years old when this photograph was taken by photographer Dan Budnik–and it is one of the most striking images in his work on the civil rights movement and the marches from Selma to Montgomery, Ala., in his recently published book, “Marching to the Freedom Dream” (Trolley Books $80).
Quintella was one of many children who took part in the protests and Mr. Budnik’s vivid photographs captured many of the young, hopeful faces of the struggle. He writes: “These young students, considering the threat of violence they faced, acted very heroically. One young lady in particular stands out in my mind to this day – Quintella Harrell, a demonstrator for voter registration who was only ten. Her face had that resolve, and to me, she personified inevitable change.” Dr. Harrell, reached by phone, chuckled when she recalled showing the photograph to her daughter, who told her “That’s that look on your face!” “I’m not a quitter” she says “it was a look of perseverance.”
This week’s Friday Final Lines wrap up the experience of artist-activist William R. Christopher in 1965 following marching in Montgomery, AL.
Christopher, his partner George Tooker, and colleague John Scotsford traveled to Montgomery to march to Selma and honor Rev. James Reeb.
According to the project description: “In March 1965, artist-activist William Christopher traveled to Selma, Alabama, in support of the Civil Rights Movement. In the previous week, state troopers had attacked protest marchers in Selma, and a white mob inflicted a fatal beating on James Reeb, a Unitarian minister. On March 15, Christopher attended Reeb’s memorial service, at which Martin Luther King Jr. delivered the eulogy. Afterwards, Christopher joined the crowd that marched with Dr. King to the Selma courthouse to lay a wreath in Reeb’s honor.”