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Octavius Catto Series - Opening Panel Discussion

Thursday, February 1

Community History Parkway District

Octavius V. Catto was a 19th century civil rights activist, scholar, athlete, and community leader. In September 2017 a coalition of community activists, scholars, and public servants had the joy of dedicating a memorial at City Hall to this local hero, making him the first individual African American to be honored with a statue on public land in Philadelphia.

This February, the Free Library of Philadelphia is proud to collaborate with History Making Productions to bring screenings of their short dramatic documentary, Octavius V. Catto: A Legacy for the 21st Century to neighborhood libraries throughout Philadelphia. Each screening will include workshops or discussions with a rotating caste of experts involved in this celebration of Catto and his achievements.

Join us at the opening event of the series for a panel discussion featuring Catto scholars Dan Biddle and Murray Dubin authors of Tasting Freedom: Octavius V. Catto and the Battle for Equality in Civil War America.

All attendees will receive a free copy of a lush broadsheet newsprint biography, Octavius V. Catto: Remembering a Forgotten Hero, and will have the opportunity to purchase newly released paperback copies of Tasting Freedom: Octavius V. Catto and the Battle for Equality in Civil War America. 

Free RSVP Tickets are available at

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Venue Information

Free Library of Philadelphia
1901 Vine Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103
215-686-5322 phone

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The Water Works behind the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Photo by Erin DiSerafino.