Trouvadore Documentary Project Planning
Houston PBS with Windward Media is planning to develop a one-hour documentary for NOVA entitled "Trouvadore, the Last Voyage of an African Slave Trader." The film will chronicle the scientific archaeological excavation of an illegal slave ship that wrecked in the British West Indies in 1841. Planning activities will include archival research and consultation with archaeologists, DNA and curriculum specialists and local descendents of the slave ship. Deliverables will include an advanced treatment for the documentary and script outline. The Trouvadore will be the only slave ship ever recovered that was actually carrying slaves at the time it sank in 1841. The project will show how modern science can help uncover and interpret this event as well as the trans-Atlantic slave trade of which it was part. The PI will work with archaeologists from Ships of Discovery (Corpus Christi, Texas) and the Turks and Caicos National Museum. DNA studies of possible descendents will be carried out in cooperation with the National Human Genome Center at Howard University. Because NOVA has indicated its support for this project, the documentary that results from this grant will have the potential to reach significant audiences. In addition, the products of this planning process will further efforts to produce a web site, a traveling exhibition and ancillary materials. A report summarizing the results of the research during this phase will make the findings available to others as well.
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