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Minnesota TV station uncovers old footage of very young prince


Finally, a historian who had researched Prince’s childhood helped connect Mr. Wagner to Terrance Jackson, who had grown up with him. Mr. Wagner played the clip for him and Mr. Jackson immediately recognized the boy as Prince.

“It’s Skipper!” said Mr. Jackson, using Prince’s childhood nickname.

As short as the interview is, it gives context to causes Prince would later support, such as public education, labor rights and fair compensation for artists, said Elliott H. Powell, professor of studies. Americans at the University of Minnesota who teaches a course. on Prince.

The interview with the young prince was conducted in north Minneapolis, a predominantly black part of the city where young activists led uprisings in the 1960s to protest police brutality, harassment of black youths in white-owned businesses and commercial development that was decimating the neighborhood, Professor Powell said.

“Prince is growing up in this environment and seeing the impact of young black activists,” he said.

His discovery stimulated current teachers, who played “Purple Rain” at one of their gatheringssaid Greta Callahan, president of the teachers’ chapter of the Minneapolis Teachers’ Federation, Local 59. After a nearly three-week strike, the union reached an agreement with the district late last month.

“There was a lot of ‘Of course Prince supported the strike!'” Ms Callahan said in an email.

The interview, Prof Powell said, also shows the influence of two important women in Prince’s life: his mother, Mattie Shaw Nelson Baker, who worked as a social worker in state schools; and Bernadette Anderson, a family friend, PTA volunteer and Minneapolis activist who helped raise Prince.

“This 17-second clip does so much work,” Mr. Ali said.

And it was almost lost, Mr Liddy said.

Many of the station’s old news reels, which were contained in metal canisters and stored on shelves in the basement of WCCO’s former headquarters, were destroyed when a water main burst and flooded the basement around 1981, said former station editor Tom Ziegler. who retired in 2012.

When the station moved to its new location around 1983, he said, he and other employees learned that someone had started dumping the remaining tapes.



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