COLUMBIA, S.C. (WBTV) - The tireless, award-winning works from WBTV veteran journalist Steve Crump will be helping students, scholars and generations of journalists for decades to come.
The Center for Civil Rights History and Research and University of South Carolina Libraries have announced that Crump, along with his wife Cathy, will be donating their papers and films to the university, aptly named the Steve and Cathy Wilson Crump Collection.
“It’s an honor, especially when your body of work is being recognized in an academic environment,” Crump said. “My hope is that researchers will gain knowledge, information and a sense of empowerment by learning more about the people and scenarios that make up these stories.”
For nearly 40 years, Crump has been telling stories from around the world and every corner of the Carolinas, covering both the big picture and small. He’s shown us incredible coverage and insight of pivotal moments and figures in African American history and the Civil Rights Movement.
“This acquisition will allow us to include extraordinary footage from Mr. Crump’s documentaries on subjects like Rock Hill’s Friendship Nine, students who served 30-day sentences after sitting in at a local lunch counter in our Justice for All: South Carolina and the American Civil Rights Movement exhibit,” says Center for Civil Rights History and Research Director Dr. Bobby Donaldson.
UofSC Libraries Dean Tom McNally say the university is honored to receive Crump’s works for the collection.
“The interviews and footage contained in this expansive collection are an invaluable resource for educators and scholars, especially historians of the Civil Rights Movement,” McNally said.
Crump revealed one of his secrets for his extraordinary storytelling.
“When you’re doing stories and documentary projects, you’re almost always too close to the subject matter,” he said, “But when you have the ability to step away, you’re able to see the scope of things.”
That ability to see the scope of things has led to a multitude of awards and live events for Steve Crump.
In February 2019, he received a Regional Emmy Award for a documentary remembering the tragic events of the Orangeburg Massacre in South Carolina.
Crump was recognized as National Association of Black Journalists’ (NABJ) first Journalist of the Year Award recipient in July 2016 for his exceptional coverage of the tragic Mother Emmanuel Church shooting in Charleston, South Carolina.
“To be recognized as the first recipient in a newly-created category is simply amazing and humbling,” said Crump said at the time. “It is recognition not to be taken lightly, because it comes from so many of my colleagues and peers in a profession I value deeply.”
Crump sat down with WBTV’s Jamie Boll two years later to publicly discuss his battle with colon cancer.
Steve returned to WBTV after a nine-month leave of absence with a focus on telling stories that impact the Charlotte community.
A surgical procedure to remove the cancer led to a serious MRSA infection, which caused him to be in the hospital for 51 days. For a time, Steve was on dialysis, breathing through a ventilator and using feeding tubes.
“Let me thank the viewers - for your prayers, your thoughts, your gifts, your cards, your well-wishes - as we continue to go through this journey,” Crump said upon his return. “I could not have done it, could not have remained this positive, could not have gotten to this destination without the help of you guys.”
UofSC will be previewing some of the donated material for the public and hosting a virtual conversation between Crump and WIS Anchor Judi Gatson on Tuesday, February 16, at 6 p.m. titled “Telling the Untold Stories: The Civil Rights Documentaries of Journalist Steve Crump.”
To register for the event, click here.