My Mother’s Journey is a 60-minute documentary on the life of Elizabeth “Liz” Hampton. Directed by her son, Dr. Sam Hampton, the film chronicles the pressure that Liz felt as a young, impoverished single mother in the midst of a community smoldering in racial tension. Following the lead of Rochester reformers before her, she is spurred to make change in the community around her, improving her personal position and that of many people like her.
The film profiles her grade school experiences in the South, her early marital years and children, her marital breakup and life as a single parent, the Rochester riots and her civic engagement work, and her later community efforts before she died suddenly following surgery at the age of 62.
Tacoma Film Festival - Tacoma, Washington
Utopia Film Festival - Greenbelt, Maryland
Buffalo Niagara Film Festival - Buffalo, New York
Docs in Progress - Silver Spring, Maryland
The Harley School - Rochester, New York
Solomon Schechter School - Westchester, New York
State University of New York - Geneseo, New York
The Center for Youth Services - Rochester, New York
Bloombars - Washington, DC
Corner Store Arts Center - Washington, DC
Banneker/Douglass Museum - Annapolis, MD
Chautauqua Institution - Chautauqua, NY
Television, Internet and Video Association
2009 Bronze Peer Award for Documentary
Liz Hampton (1937-1999) was born in Birmingham, Alabama. Her father worked in the steel mills, and remarried after Liz’s mother died. Liz and her older sister Mary had little opportunity in the south, and after high school, following the path of the Underground Railroad and many blacks before them, made their way north in pursuit of a better life. They settled in Rochester and Liz found a job at Strong Memorial Hospital, where she met her husband.
Following the birth of her third child, Liz’s marriage to Herman Hampton crumbled, and Liz found herself as a young, poor single parent living in the projects. Suffering from the stresses of raising a family on her own, and dealing with the chronic conditions of poverty all around her, Liz sought significant change. At the same time, racial and economic tension was mounting to a boiling point, breaking out in city rioting in the summer of 1964.
Content and design by Hampton Consulting & Film © 2009 My Mother's Journey