Liberia ’77

by valrac4_a3kqdy

Canadian brothers Jeff and Andrew Topham spent their childhood in Liberia because their father worked there. The family moved away from Liberia in 1977, several months before the coup and the two civil wars that followed. Thirty years later, the brothers—who are both photographers—returned to Liberia on a personal journey to reconnect with this part of their past, bringing with them their father’s photos from those years. Their goals were to try to find their housekeeper James, who had helped raise them, and to reshoot at the locations of the original photos.

Once back in the nation of their childhood, their personal journey took on a larger scope after they learned that the people of Liberia had been forced to destroy all photos during the war. Now the brothers have begun an initiative to collect images of Liberia from the years before 1977 to give to the National Museum in Monrovia to help rebuild the visual records of the country’s history.

The video above describes the project and the documentary about their journey, Liberia ’77.  The documentary will air on Ontario’s TVO this Wednesday, May 23, at 9 p.m. To find out more about the collection of photos from pre-war Liberia, please visit their website here.

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