A GREAT DAY IN HARLEM (photo courtesy Wikipedia)

“A Great Day in Harlem” is the photo at left that portrays 57 notable jazz musicians gathered in New York City in 1958.

The picture is inspiring Fort Worth activist Don Young to attempt his own photo shoot.

The founder of Prairie Fest was among the earliest rabblerousers to fight back against natural gas drillers that flooded into Fort Worth a decade ago to introduce urban drilling to a million unsuspecting people. Young and others adopted the name “fracktivists” to describe themselves in the fight against hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. The process uses millions gallons of water at each drill site, and has been associated with various forms of ground and air pollution, earthquakes, and many other drawbacks.


Young wants to bring together his early comrades in that fight, and take a group photo for the ages.

“I’m in the planning stages of a special event to bring together all the major players who have participated in calling attention to the negative impacts of drilling in the Barnett Shale from 2004 to the present for a group photograph,” Young wrote recently on his Facebook page. “My idea is to make this happen on April 25 at Prairie Fest in Fort Worth. Why Prairie Fest? The event was founded in 2004 as the first major public event to call attention to possible drilling at Tandy Hills Natural Area and the Barnett Shale. I feel it’s important to have a professionally done photo document since we were the first fracking sacrifice zone in the country. We were the first wave of resisters. Please let me know your availability on that date and who you think should be included. Your general thought and suggestions are welcome.”


  1. Man, news travels fast. The idea barely formed in my mind and now it’s in the Weekly. Response has been good, so far, but I will need all the main players to make it happen. That includes Mr. Prince and Mr. Gorman, btw. And don’t give that stuff about journalistic independence. This is different.