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Hidden in Full View

The story of the Georgetown neighborhood of Salisbury, Maryland, at the 90th anniversary of the lynching of Matthew Williams

Out of the archive, racist plans are laid bare.

On December 4, 1931, a mob of white men in Salisbury, Maryland, lynched and set ablaze a 22-year-old Black man named Matthew Williams. For nearly a century, the lynching of Matthew Williams has lived in the shadows of the more well-known incidents of racial terror in the Deep South:

Watch the Trailer
Watch the Trailer

About the Film

poster advertising the film: Hidden In Full View

Hidden In Full View introduces the story of the lynching of Matthew Williams in Salisbury, Maryland.  The story of townspeople who stole a life, terrorized Black residents, destroyed the Black business district, listened to testimony from 124 witnesses to the brutal lynching, and yet held no one accountable. To this day. 

This film is the first in a series that follows the story of brave descendants and witnesses willing to use the truth to fuel restorative justice.

Dr. Charles Chavis, Director of the John Mitchell Jr. Program for History, Justice, and Race has been working for 5 years to research and document racial terror lynchings on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, including Salisbury. His work is being documented in a forthcoming book The Silent Shore, which will be published in January 2022. Professor Chavis also serves as the Vice-Chair of The Maryland Lynching Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

#breathewithme and George Mason University will continue to tell the true stories of racial terror and oppression hidden in plain sight in an ongoing series of documentary shorts.

Upcoming Screenings

Watch on demand! The film (7.5 minutes) is now available on Vimeo. Follow the link to unlock a screening.

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Please let us know if you would like to organize a screening & discussion in your area.

Prior Screenings

4 Dec. 2021 · 1-3pm ET
Online event

The Maryland Lynching Memorial Project and #breathewithme Revolution held the World Premiere of Hidden in Full View. This was followed by a community conversation on social justice and the role of the truth to fuel restorative justice moderated by Prophet, co-founder of #breathewithme Revolution, and the Black Music Action Coalition, joined by several distinguished panelists.

30 Mar. 2022 · 2-3:30pm ET
Online event

Hidden in Full View and The Silent Shore: A Story of Truth, Racial Healing, and Transformation. Please join Charles L. Chavis, Jr., for a virtual screening sponsored by the American Library Association (ALA), the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL), the Association of Research Libraries (ARL), the Society of American Archivists (SAA), the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH), and the 1890 Land-Grant Institutions and Tuskegee University Library Deans/Directors Association, Inc.


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