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Home Events - Lakeside Ohio Education Historic Portrayal Historic Portrayal: Ida B. Wells-Barnett

Historic Portrayal: Ida B. Wells-Barnett

Thanks to Women in History Ohio, a nonprofit dedicated to the education of all people through the dramatic re-creation of the lives of notable women in history, we will be visited by Ida B. Wells-Barnett, portrayed by Sherrie Tolliver. This Historic Portrayal will take place at 7:30 p.m. Monday, June 24 in Orchestra Hall.

Wells-Barnett was known nationally and internationally as a “crusader for justice.” She traveled throughout the United States and foreign countries raising awareness of the oppression of African Americans and women.

Born on July 16, 1862, in Holly Springs, Mississippi, she was orphaned at the age of 16 when her parents died as victims of the Yellow Fever Epidemic of 1878.

She received her education and early training at Shaw University, now Rust College. Wells-Barnett became a teacher, journalist and public speaker and was one of two women who signed “the call” for the formation of the NAACP.

She was a religious woman who read the Bible regularly, read Shakespeare and loved classical music. She married Ferdinand Barnett, owner of the Chicago Conservator.

In recent years, her hometown honored her legacy by naming the post office the Ida B. Wells Station, and a postage stamp was issued by the U.S. Postal Service commemorating her crusade for human rights.

Tolliver joined Women in History Ohio in 1994 and has accumulated a rich cadre of characters.

Tolliver’s favorite characters are “the ones who have a rags-to-riches theme in their lives. These women inspired me because they triumphed over incredibly difficult circumstances. At a time when being poor, black and female usually meant most doors of opportunity were closed they dared to dream big dreams and refused to take ‘no’ for an answer. These women chose to pursue excellence and they did it with vision, courage and compassion for others. They blazed trails for others, and all of them were dedicated to empowering, encouraging and educating women and men, so that they, too, could achieve their dreams.”

Tolliver has a Bachelor of Fine Arts in acting from New York University where she minored in African American history. She has extensive training in dance, theater and music.

Currently, she works as an early childcare educator and performs as an actress and standup comic.

She has taught drama at the Cleveland School of the Arts, the Beck Center and the Jerry Leonard Youth Theater.

She has performed at the Cleveland Playhouse, Cain Park’s Alma Theater, Karamu House, the Front Row Theater, Jewish Community Center’s Variety Tale Theater and Kennedy’s Cabaret at Playhouse Square.


Jun 24, 2024


7:30 pm




Orchestra Hall
Orchestra Hall
122 West 2nd Street, Lakeside, Lakeside Marblehead, OH, USA

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