Minstrel shows were quite common throughout the country into the mid-1950s. In Hopedale,
    they were held at the town hall. The early ones were put on by the American Legion, the
    Unitarian Church and possibly other groups. The last one was likely in the early fifties. By
    that time they were being done by the Union Church Men's Club. I think the pictures from the
    top are from that era. The ads are from the program with the 1939 Unitarian Church show.

                                    
Short Stories and Pictures Menu                          HOME   

    These names turned up long after I was given the pictures. However,
    they seem to go with these photos. If you can confirm this or add more,
    please let me know. You can use the email link on the homepage.

    Thanks very much to Rev. Tony Lorenzen of the Hopedale Unitarian Parish for the following, much needed, addition
    to this page.

    I would like to suggest that you add to the page a statement about how Minstrel Shows are racist depictions of
    Black people by white people.  There is a statement at the bottom of the page that minstrel shows were common in
    America for many years, but no statement about them being racist and wrong.

    Given the current news about Virginia Governor Ralph Northam's admission that he wore blackface, it would be a
    great time to make the change and show that the curators of this wonderful historical resource acknowledge the
    racism inherent in Minstrel Shows and blackface and want to apologize for our foreparents' racist behavior.

    The history of blackface and minstrel shows aren't just a relic of a racist past but a problem of the racist present.  

    As a member congregation of the Unitarian Universalist Association committed to combating white supremacy
    culture in our denomination and in our society, my congregation and I hope you will address this issue.

    On behalf of the people of Hopedale we apologize for the harm these minstrel shows caused and still cause.