University of Connecticut

Events Calendar

Film-Finding Samuel Lowe from Harlem to China

Monday, March 5, 2018
6:00pm – 9:00pm

Storrs Campus
Student Union Theatre

Film screening (90 min) and discussion, led by Professor & Associate Vice Provost for Research Michelle Williams, on mixed race issues.

Three successful black siblings from Harlem discover their heritage by searching for clues about their long-lost Chinese grandfather, Samuel Lowe.

Retired NBC Universal executive Paula Williams Madison and her brothers, Elrick and Howard Williams, were raised in Harlem by their Chinese Jamaican mother, Nell Vera Lowe. Nell encouraged them to realize the rags-to-riches American dream, resulting in their growth from welfare recipients to wealthy entrepreneurs. In order to fulfill a promise to their mother to connect to her estranged father's people, they embark on a journey to uncover their ancestral roots.

The three travel to the Toronto Hakka Chinese Conference where they connect to members of the Chinese Jamaican community. As the mystery of their grandfather's life unfolds, the trio travels to Jamaica, learning that their grandfather had a life there similar to their own, starting with humble beginnings in Mocho, Clarendon Parish, and ending with successful business ownership in the affluent St. Ann's Bay. But in 1933, he left Jamaica, returning to China for good.

Taking family tree research to an epic proportion, the siblings and 16 of their family members travel to two Chinese cities, ShenZhen and GuangZhou. Together, they visit their family's ancestral village, finding documented lineage that dates their family back 3,000 years to 1006 BC. The trip culminates in an emotional and unforgettable family reunion with 300 of their grandfather's Chinese descendants.

At its heart, this is a story about familial love and devotion that transcends race, space and time. (

This event is free and open to the public.

Co-sponsored by the Asian American Cultural Center, the MIXED Program, the African American Cultural Center in observance of Black History Month and HAPA, the Half Asian People's Association at UConn.


Asian American Cultural Center (primary), International Student & Scholar Services, Together, UConn Master Calendar

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