Cicely Tyson: "Positive Contributions to My Heritage"

To commemorate the beginning of Black History Month, we are celebrating two remarkable American heroes who are forever and inextricably linked in film history.

A Woman Called Moses stars the late, legendary Cicely Tyson in a miniseries honoring the life of Harriett Tubman who summoned the strength and indomitable will to defy and overcome a tyrannous system. 

In her near 70 year career on screen, the Emmy, Tony, and Academy Honorary Award winner explored a broad and deep mix of roles in film, television and theater, many that worked to lift and amplify the black experience. "Whatever good I have accomplished as an actress I believe came in direct proportion to my efforts to portray Black women who have made positive contributions to my heritage."

A Woman Called Moses was produced as a television miniseries and based on the life of Harriet Tubman, the escaped slave who organized the infamous Underground Railroad, ultimately leading scores from enslavement to freedom. 

"There are some marvelous moments and splendid performances in 'A Woman Called Moses,'" says its 1978 New York Times review. "Miss Tyson, gives another of her beautifully controlled performances, combining tremendous energy with intelligent restraint."

In addition to Tyson's tour de force performance as Tubman, the legendary Orson Welles narrates her journey: a selfless devotion to the lives of those she freed from oppression.

"Every great dream begins with a dreamer," Harriet Tubman once said, "Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world."

Cicely Tyson was one such groundbreaking dreamer that did just that. “I’m a woman and I’m Black. I wait for roles. First, to be written for a woman and then, to be written for a Black woman. And then I have the audacity to be selective about the kind of roles I play. Aren’t you amazed I’m still here?”

We wish she were but the legacy left for us to enjoy and from which to learn and grow will have to do. May this American treasure rest in peace, changing the world as she looks on.

See Miss Tyson now as "A Woman Called Moses."

TheArchive channel is dedicated to aficionados and lovers of story, craft, and silver screen fun – streaming rare, retro, and 4K restored films and classic TV. From indies and series, to Oscar winning documentaries, unearthed MOWs, and a killer horror library, TheArchive delivers forgotten, never-before-seen gems for free. MarilynKarloff, and Orson Welles stream alongside ReeseKeanu, and Samuel L. Jackson. Find true stories of QueenHendrix, and Sinatra, an LGBTQ library, MLK bios, and world history docs. TheArchive has the movies and shows you either saw, should’ve seen, or should be watching now!