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UNCG Archives Supports Smithsonian Channel Documentary on the Greensboro Four

The University of North Carolina at Greensboro has long been a primary source of archival information on the Greensboro Sit-ins.

Now UNCG archivists are working with the Smithsonian Channel to supply background and images for a new documentary on the Sit-ins, which began in February 1, 1960.

The Martha Blakeney Hodges Special Collections and University Archives sent Smithsonian more than 30 images and transcripts of oral history interviews with several UNCG (then Woman’s College) alums who were involved in the Sit-ins during that first week.

“Seizing Justice: The Greensboro 4” premieres on Smithsonian Sunday, July 25, airing at 8 p.m., 9 p.m. and 11 p.m. The premiere comes on the 50th anniversary of the day Woolworth’s desegregated its lunch counters.

The Greensboro Sit-ins began when four young black men from North Carolina A&T State College sat down at the Woolworth’s lunch counter in downtown Greensboro and asked to be served. Their actions sparked a six-month peaceful protest that played a pivotal role in the Civil Rights movement.

“We have material no one else in town seems to have,” says Hermann Trojanowski, interim university archivist. “People have come to us for years, particularly this year before the 50th anniversary.”

Trojanowski worked with Smithsonian from mid-April to mid-May, devoting an estimated 20 hours to the project.

For more on “Justice,” visit
And watch the end credits closely to catch UNCG University Archives and Manuscripts.