In celebration of Emancipation Day in Florida May 20, the Lee County Black History Society is offering free screenings of “Invisible History: Middle Florida’s Hidden Roots.” The movie will be shown at Roberto Clemente Park and Dunbar Community School.

On Friday, May 13 at 7 p.m., the movie will be shown in the park and on Saturday, May 14 at 3 p.m., the movie will be shown in the community room at the park at 1936 Henderson Ave., Fort Myers. Space for the showing in the community room is limited, and participants should pre-register at 239-332-8778 or at On Friday, May 20 at 6 p.m., the movie will be shown at the Dunbar Community School, 1857 High St., Fort Myers.

Florida State University College of Motion Picture Arts Filmmaker in residence Valerie Scoon’s documentary, “Invisible History: Middle Florida’s Hidden Roots,” sheds light on the little-known history of plantations and the enslaved in North Florida.

“The Lee County Black History Society is a unifying organization, which instills in all generations hope and pride in Black culture,” said society Chairman Charles Barnes. “This movie and other activities planned with partner organizations to commemorate emancipation in Florida and the United States are important to the complete understanding of our community and our culture.”

Emancipation from slavery was proclaimed in Tallahassee on May 20, 1865, 11 days after the end of the Civil War, and two years after the Proclamation first issued by President Abraham Lincoln freed those enslaved in southern states. The movies lead up to Juneteenth, the oldest nationally celebrated commemoration of the ending of slavery in the United States and a federal holiday.

The Lee County Black History Society will also join with the Dunbar Festival Committee in the Juneteenth Community Festival’s Family Day in the Park on Saturday, June 18 from noon to 6 p.m. at Roberto Clemente Park.

For information, contact the Lee County Black History Society at 239-332-8778 or at

About Lee County Black History Society

The Lee County Black History Society, Inc. (LCBHS), a nonprofit organization, was founded in 1994 by Janice Cass. The LCBHS, Inc. is comprised of an 11-member Board of Directors which meets on the second Tuesday of each month. The meeting is open to the public. Cass’s objectives for establishing the LCBHS was to provide a way for African Americans in Lee County to recognize and celebrate Black History Month, as well as creating the Williams Academy Black History Museum. Black History Month, Legends Gala, Juneteenth and Holiday in the Park are events presented each year by LCBHS through partnerships with other community-based organizations, churches and private citizens. For information, visit