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Preston Lauterbach: The Secret Life of Ernest Withers

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

In conjunction with the Ernest Withers: Picturing the Civil Rights Movement 1957-1968 exhibition now on display, the Heritage Center is hosting Preston Lauterbach, author of Bluff City: The Secret Life of Photographer: Ernest Withers.

In this gripping narrative history, Preston Lauterbach examines the complicated political and economic forces that informed Withers’s seeming betrayal of the people he photographed. Withers traversed disparate worlds, from Black Power meetings to raucous Memphis nightclubs where Elvis brushed shoulders with B.B. King. He had a gift for capturing both dramatic historic moments and intimate emotional ones, and it may have been this attention to nuance that made Withers both a brilliant photographer and an essential asset to the FBI. Written with similar nuance, Bluff City culminates with a riveting account of the 1968 riot that ended in violence just a few days before Dr. King’s death.

A Q&A and book signing will follow.

  • Organizer Name: JSAAHC
  • Phone: (434) 260-8720
  • Email:
  • Website:
  • Type: Lectures
  • Time: September 17, 2019 - 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM
  • Venue:JSAAHC Auditorium
  • Duration:120 Minutes (Approximately)
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