Black Summer Theatre's History Retold
Olive Tomlinson (as told to Linsey Lee)
Editor’s Note: Olive Tomlinson spoke with Linsey Lee, oral history curator for the Martha’s Vineyard Museum, about her recollections of Liz White’s Shearer Summer Theatre, one of the first summer theatre groups on the Island after World War II. An actress who felt stymied by the stereotyped African American roles available to her on Broadway, in the summers Liz returned to Oak Bluffs where her family owned and operated Shearer Cottage, a popular inn for vacationing African Americans.
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Long Legacy of Open Doors Shearer Cottage Turns 100
Ivy Ashe

The day before the centennial celebration of Shearer Cottage in Oak Bluffs, Gretchen Tucker Underwood noticed that the landscaping around the 100-year-old red inn on Rose avenue was not quite ready for the impending party.

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At Shearer Cottage, Blacks Were Welcome

My grandfather, Charles Shearer, was born into slavery. Henrietta Shearer was of Native American and African American descent. They were both educated at Hampton University.

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