The Blinding of Isaac Woodard 

On February 12, 1946, Sergeant Isaac Woodard, a decorated African American soldier on his way home from three years of military service, was removed from a Greyhound bus in Batesburg, South Carolina, after he challenged the bus driver’s disrespectful treatment of him. The local police chief, Lynwood Shull, took Woodard into custody then bludgeoned him with a blackjack, gouging his eyes and permanently blinding him. News of Sergeant Woodard’s assault aroused the conscience of President Harry Truman, who established the first presidential commission on civil rights and issued an executive order ending segregation in the military. In South Carolina, after an all-white jury acquitted Shull, the presiding judge, J. Waties Waring, set about challenging the judicial system, issuing major civil rights decisions from his Charleston courtroom which formed the legal basis of the Supreme Court’s landmark 1954 Brown v. Board of Education decision that outlawed segregation and jump-started the modern civil rights movement. This two-hour film will present the riveting narrative of the events that changed the course of America’s civil rights history. Based on the critically acclaimed book, Unexampled Courage, by Richard Gergel.