Hi, My name is Maria and our company, Break of Dawn Productions, has released a feature length historic true crime documentary about the notorious Lawson Family Massacre of Christmas Day 1929 in Stokes County, NC.The film is entitled 'A Christmas Family Tragedy', and explores the legends and myths surrounding the murders and what they mean to the remaining family and community now, deep in the heart of Mayberry country.I found your site while reviewing some of the most popular, highly rated websites that review materials such as ours, and I hope we can interest you in our project.
On Christmas Day, 1929, a widely respected, affluent tobacco farmer named Charlie Lawson brutally murdered his wife and 6 of his 7 children with both ends of a shotgun and a rifle before killing himself; his eldest son, Arthur, aged 18, was sent to the store to buy more shotgun shells just before the violence broke out. Within days, newspapers carried the story coast to coast and 5,000 people attended their funeral. But that was just the beginning… Never so much a 'who-dunnit' as a resounding 'Why?!', this mystery has inspired classic bluegrass murder ballads, ghost stories, family feuds, house tours that lured over a half million people at a quarter a head through it’s doors during the Great Depression, and overcapacity crowds for annual multimedia presentations retelling the story in the last decade.
But a heritage of silence follows the mystery, often with deadly consequences, in a bucolic rural community unable to come to terms with its darker side.The ballad used to be sung by batterers as a warning to their wives and kids to behave or else; now it is starting to be sung as a warning to abusers, as to where their malevolent actions will inevitably lead with the aid of The Squirrel Nut Zippers’ Katharine Whalen, who donated a cover of the ballad to our film and it’s forthcoming soundtrack.
To demonstrate our commitment to using history as a tool to build a better future, we're setting aside a healthy percentage of the profits of this film to benefit local domestic violence organizations, beginning with Stokes Family Violence Services, where we look to get the county's first battered women's shelter over the hump and into operation before the beginning of the 2007 school year.
I'd love to send you a copy of the film, in the hopes that perhaps you can post a review with a link to our site on your site.If so, please send me an address where we can mail a copy. In the meantime, I can email a press kit to further familiarize you with our project. From the beginning of the Great Depression, this legend has attracted massive interest from coast to coast, and we’re finding it’s stronger now than ever. I think many of your readers will be interested as well.The film is now available on DVD at www.bodproductions.com as well as playing at special screenings throughout the south, in addition to festivals TBA. Thanks, Maria Hodges, research director, Break of Dawn Productions