The Barber’s Diaries

Video Story Treatment: “The Barber’s Diaries”

Video Story Treatment: “The Barber’s Diaries”

The Barber’s Diaries is the story of Charles Everett Ellis, who was a barber in Altamont, a small Illinois town during the 1920s, and the only black man in town. We believe we, as a nation, are at a historic time when such a story carries a profound message.

Read More →

Read More →

On-Location Production of “The Barber’s Diaries”

On-Location Production of “The Barber’s Diaries”

Sisters Wilma Ellis Kazemzadeh (left and Adrienne Ellis Reeves stand on the spot where their family home once stood in the central Illinois town of Altamont. The Ellis family had lived there – the only black family in a white farming community – until the early 1930s.

Read More →

Read More →

Media Coverage: A Barber’s Diary

Media Coverage: A Barber’s Diary

By Jingo! That’s what Charles Everett Ellis might have said about Sunday’s visit of several descendants to his old home town of Altamont. Ellis, who used the term “By Jingo” on a regular basis, was a fixture in downtown Altamont during the first three decades of the 20th century.

Read More →

Read More →

From The Barber’s Diaries

From The Barber’s Diaries

Many mistakes have been made which are daily exacting their certain toll and are holding back my onward progress but with experiences gained in those years transformed into wisdom in the future I yet declare that my next forty years shall not be ineffective in service to my Maker, mankind and my own family.

Read More →

Read More →

Media Coverage of “The Barber’s Diaries”

Media Coverage of “The Barber’s Diaries”

Black barber in Altamont focus of documentary,” writes journalist Bill Grimes for the Effingham Daily News.
His story continues …

ALTAMONT — “Forty years ago today, by Jingo. Looking back over these years have brought many revelations.

Read More →

Read More →

The Inner Mind and Powerful Voice of a Visible Man

The Inner Mind and Powerful Voice of a Visible Man

This is the story of an invisible man who lived at a time of invisible people. Charles Everett Ellis was the only black man living in an all-white small town in Illinois town during a violent period of America’s history, just before the Great Depression.

Read More →

Read More →

The Barber’s Diaries

The Barber’s Diaries

In a time before any thought of the Civil Rights Movement, when race riots erupted across the Midwest, many blacks fled to safety and better jobs in northern cities. One man remained with his family in the small Illinois farming town of Altamont.

Read More →

Read More →

Photo Gallery

Photo Gallery

Here is a collection photos of the Ellis family in Altamont, Illinois, in the pre-Great Depression era, and today. We encourage your comments, and invite you to send your photos related to this project.

Read More →

Read More →

A Story of America

A Story of America

The Barber’s Diaries is the true story of one black man’s journey in America, from the 1920s through the 1970s. A story about perseverance, commitment, family, education, and faith. Working as the sole barber in a time before the Great Depression – surrounded by racial violence in the Midwest and South – Charles Everett Ellis lived with his wife and seven children.

Read More →

Read More →

Top